Brand repositioning, or rebranding, is a process typically undertaken by organizations whose role in the marketplace has evolved over time. Its purpose is to change perceptions – both internally and externally. Internally, processes are improved and employees are united under a consistent message, or brand promise. Externally, the brand’s delivery of its new brand promise provides customers with a stronger sense of who the brand is and what it stands for.
Organizations who undertake a rebranding do so with the intent of building brand equity, increasing customer acquisitions, improving customer retention, strengthening customer loyalty/advocacy and increasing profitability.
If your organization’s role in the marketplace has evolved and you are looking to improve its performance across these metrics, then perhaps its time to consider a brand repositioning. Here are five tips for a successful makeover:
• Start with a plan that includes targeted milestones and an expected ROI
A specific schedule of who will achieve what by when, along with the expected incremental sales increase for every dollar spent on the rebranding, will ensure timely, actionable and measurable results.
• Test your rebranding recommendations on a small subset of your target audience
The stakes of any rebranding effort are simply too high for anyone to ignore the need for testing. The impact of any repositioning recommendation should be measured among sample test and control groups before full-scale activation. Declining sales after recent rebranding efforts by brands like JC Penney and Tropicana underscore the importance of testing.
• Listen to your customers and non-customers
Organizations who listen only to their best customers learn why those customers stay with them and nothing about why disgruntled customers leave, or why those who are not current customers might be difficult to acquire.
• Leverage the experience and knowledge of your employees
Marketers who lack cross-functional experience (e.g., sales, operations, customer service, etc.) or institutional knowledge (e.g., company, industry, markets, etc.) will find it difficult to make informed rebranding decisions and are less likely to obtain lasting organizational buy-in for the rebranding effort.
• Avoid the temptation to start over
Organizations who have met with success in the past have obviously done some things right. Successful rebranding efforts build on those achievements, and the agencies whose creative talents fueled their progress, instead of discarding them.