How refreshing your brand can boost your business
And what is a brand refresh anyway?
What would happen if you didn’t revive and replenish your wardrobe every now and then? You’d look dowdy, unfashionable and out of touch. It’s the same with your business brand – if you don’t invigorate it occasionally your business will soon become outdated and you’ll lose your competitive edge.
Times change and the demand for new and different products, service requirements and customer values are continually evolving (the recent changes due to COVID-19 have magnified this) especially in this ever-fluctuating business world. Your brand needs to adapt to keep up with these changes so that you can stay ahead of the game and continue to satisfy your customers.
What is a brand refresh?
Before you panic and scream, “Don’t you know there’s a pandemic – businesses are struggling!” Just hold your horses. You need to understand the difference between a re-brand and a refresh. A re-brand is what you might consider if you were to change your business name, logo, product line completely or you were to merge with another business. It is, in effect, about razing your business to the ground and starting again.
A refresh, on the other hand, is an entirely different animal. It’s exactly how it sounds – like blowing the dust off the business. But it need not be anything significant. The name stays the same and there are visual similarities between the old and new logo. A tweak of your current assets – replenishing the colours, creating a new version of your logo, updating your slogan or cleaning up typography can be enough to breathe new life into your business. A refreshed visual identity, for example, might focus on achieving greater clarity and accessibility with a new headline font or colour palette.
Here at Keskidee Marketing, we recognise the value in revitalising our business. The original black and yellow of the Keskidee bird, after which we were named, never really resonated with me but I loved the bird and its graceful lines. So we refreshed our existing brand with an exciting new colour palette. We’ve spent the last two years gaining clarity on which of our products and services are most useful to our clients. We’ve streamlined our team to include fun and intelligent individuals who share our enthusiasm for marketing and getting results. We’ve ended up with a business that reflects more powerfully our values.
A refresh shows your customers that your business is on the ball, is scrutinising and adapting to the changing marketplace whilst still keeping with the same purpose.
So how do you go about refreshing your brand and bringing it bang up to date? Firstly, take a look at your website. Can you make it a little more contemporary? Do you need to modify your logo? Change the colour palette? Change the typography? It still needs to reflect the heritage and quality of the product, but you can make it more appealing to today’s web consumer. Take a look at the history of the Microsoft logo. Microsoft has advanced, and its logo has evolved with it to reflect the changes to the marketplace, particularly its need to work in smaller online spaces.
As businesses evolve, it’s important that their brands reflect the current marketplace.
Starbucks is a good case in point. We know the brand and its green logo, which echoes its Fairtrade position in the market, and their environmentally-friendly approach. And over the years that logo has evolved to reflect a modern business with its increasing focus on imagery, yet we still recognise the brand.
Why should you refresh your brand?
A refresh of your brand can reflect how your company and product offering has recently grown and improved. It can tell all your existing and potential clients that you are committed to meeting their current needs and values. If you are adapting and changing with the client, then he knows he can trust you to fulfil his needs, this builds customer loyalty.
But a brand refresh doesn’t only keep or create loyal customers but also loyal employees, making them a part of something fresh and contemporary. But make sure they’re clear on every aspect of the refreshed brand, ensuring they use the new assets instead of the old and that they live and breathe your refreshed brand values. Otherwise there’ll be confusion and a lack of clarity which will impact the success of your brand refresh.
Does your business need a brand refresh?
Think about the last time you refreshed your brand – was it years, decades, never? If you can’t remember, then chances are your brand values do not adequately represent your present-day business, or accurately reflect what you offer and who you are. Take a look at the elements that make up your brand; logo, social media icon, typography, colours, photography, illustration. Do they reflect the brand positioning and are they fit for purpose?
Is your branding propelling you forward, or holding you back? Time to get busy making your brand more distinctive, memorable and purposeful. It needs to create an emotional connection with your audience so if this is lacking, don’t hesitate.
Has your audience changed or are you confused as to who your audience is? A refresh can help you to find your focus and target the people you need. Do some research on your typical customer demographics; age, gender, location, purchasing habits, search habits. What will appeal to them visually? How can you build trust in them that this is the right place to come? With this information you can build up a client persona to help you understand your website audience and how they search.
Of course, if the business is going well and you feel you have a handle on developments in your industry then you may not need to refresh at all. You’ve put a lot of work into the business over the years building awareness, recognition and trust in your brand, so if you feel that changing anything right now might be detrimental to the business, don’t change it.
The purpose of a refresh is to ensure your company image keeps up with the changing marketplace as well as imbuing the business with new vitality. It is essential to do this regularly to preserve the integrity of your brand, to maintain your relationship with your existing customers but to also expand your reach to new customers.