Following on from my blog post last week about logos not being the only element of your brand identity, this week I’d like to defend your logo. Yes, it may be time for you to think about rebranding your business, but that doesn’t have to mean a brand new logo. You can absolutely keep the logo you have. One way to rebrand is to change the style of your brand. Read on to find out what I mean.
Changing the look & feel of your brand identity
Your brand identity is partly your logo, but it’s also your colours, fonts, shapes, patterns, illustrations and photography. These are all the elements that make up your brand style. And there’s a lot you can do with these elements to renew the look and feel of your brand. Maybe it’s your colours that need a refresh or maybe your fonts are dated. Perhaps you need to invest in new brand photography. Perhaps you don’t have that many photos on your website and this is something you’ve thought about changing. Having professional photography done might be the change that makes all the difference. So, you see, it’s not the logo alone that sets the tone of the brand. It’s the sum of all of these components that creates the style of your brand - and a style update might be all you need in terms of rebranding.
If you’re dead set on changing your logo, maybe it would be enough to change the colour of it, or perhaps change the font? If your logo has an icon, perhaps an update of the icon is the way forward. What I’m trying to say is: Changing your logo doesn’t qualify as rebranding. A rebrand can be achieved in many different ways and is usually the sum of many small (or big) changes.
Communicating your brand’s key messages through your new identity
Whilst your brand identity is the first thing people notice about your business, equally important are your brand’s key messages. Many small companies will change the style of their brand or their brand identity, but then forget to align it with their values, their mission, their brand story etc. And that’s when inconsistencies can start to happen. Focusing on what’s important to you, your business and your customers is so important. Does the new brand identity communicate your values? Does your identity reflect your brand story? Are your new colours evoking the same feelings with your ideal clients as your old colour scheme did? Aligning your identity with your key messages is essential to keep your brand coherent and consistent. Don’t lose focus on what’s important. Once you lose the focus - the consistency - you lose the connection you had with your customers.
Keep the loyalty of your customers after rebranding
One way to get around this potential problem is to go through your branding as a whole. Go back and look at all your key messages – are they still up to date? Are they still communicating what you’re all about? Chances are you’re feeling the need to rebrand, because some aspects of your business have changed. Look at your whole brand strategy and change it accordingly. To keep your customers on board and get new leads, you need to keep communicating who you are, what you do and why you do it. If you’re unsure of the answer to either of those questions, because things in your business have changed, then your new brand identity is not going to have the impact you were hoping for.
Mood board the #%*! out of it
I said it last week, and I’m happy to repeat myself: mood boarding and branding go hand in hand. Mood boarding the vision for your brand could help you pick up on any inconsistencies before you start rebranding. Collect together anything and everything you like the look and feel of for the rebrand: colours, fonts, images, logos, textures, patterns and shapes. Pull out words from magazines that convey your message. Screenshot things from websites you like and print them out.
Look at your pile of colours, words, images and textures and keep everything that lives up to your core values and that have the look and feel you want. Glue them on to your piece of card. You’ll soon start to see a coherent vision take shape. Who knows, maybe you’ll find that your “old” logo fits right into that new vision, and you won’t need to change it at all. Either way, having gone through this exercise will enable you to make a conscious decision on what needs to happen next.
If your business has gone through some big changes lately and you feel your brand no longer communicates who you are, get in touch and we can discuss what your next move should be.