So you’ve decided that it’s time for a rebrand - congratulations! A rebrand, or brand refresh, is a highly effective way of altering or updating aspects of your brand in order to connect with new audiences, inspire existing ones, or to set yourself apart from the competition in a rapidly changing marketplace.
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But while it may promise big gains for your business, embarking on the process of a rebrand isn’t easy. This full-scope rebranding checklist – from planning to implementation – is here to help.
There are plenty of challenges involved in rolling out your new look and ensuring that your new brand identity is implemented across the board – in every digital corner where you have a presence.
The best way to tackle the transition is simple: plan ahead and strategize smartly. This simple checklist will help make sure that the process is as smooth, efficient and pain-free as possible. You'll find our rebranding checklist below:
1. Inform and Identify
Inform relevant stakeholders
Don’t let clients, business relationships or staff get caught off-guard by a sudden rebrand. One of the main pitfalls of rebranding is failing to let the relevant people know that it is going to happen, as this causes confusion and mistrust. As you consider and plan your brand makeover, it's important to keep key stakeholders in the loop. Make staff and partners aware that a change is coming before you actually undergo the transition, which will make their jobs easier. It’s also a great way to get critical feedback from your stakeholders and get them involved in the process, which in turn will build those relationships and promote loyalty.
It also helps to get audiences excited by hinting that something big will happen. Keep laying that groundwork all the way up until your brand launch via social media and newsletters.
Identify your new business name or identity
The key factors to think about when engaging designers and outside consultants include:
- What story do I want my brand to tell?
- Who is my audience?
- What is my brand’s long-term goal – can my brand identity grow into it?
- How would my new brand look fit in with new digital and mobile platforms and across my internal content?
Be careful not to chase naming or visual trends that might soon become obsolete. At the same time, don’t be afraid to take a risk – if you want to stand out from the pack, you will need to find a creative way to describe yourself.
2. External Implementation
Update your digital presence:
You’ve done the work, now it’s time to roll it out and transition your website, social media and third-party sites with your new logo, imagery, content text and contact information. Search your brand and monitor it with Google Alerts so that you become aware when it is mentioned and can make changes if anything under the old branding rears its head.
It's a common pitfall of rebranding to assume a logo or name is the main brand element, and fail to update all the relevant aspects accordingly. Don’t miss these crucial tweaks:
- If you have built new pages, remember to update links.
- Revise metadata on web pages where needed: things like page titles, page descriptions and image tags.
- Send updated logos, descriptions and taglines to affiliated partners who link to, or mention, your site.
- Update SEO terms and keywords.
- Update your listings in search directories.
Note: If you're changing your business name and not just your logo, make sure to clarify that the URL, social media handles and trademarks are available.
Announce it to the world
A rebrand isn’t simply an easy switch, where you wake up one day under a new logo and business carries on as usual. Once everything is implemented, it’s important to strategize and execute an effective way to introduce it to the world at large. A good way to do this is to add a blog post or news item explaining the change. Another is to intermittently share social media posts reminding customers of your new brand over the first 3-6 months.
When selling the story of your new brand, it’s critical to communicate how it will improve the experience of your existing customers, while ensuring the elements customers love will remain.
3. Internal implementation
Here is where underprepared rebrands can go disastrously wrong: managers forget that the inside of a business matters as much as the outside. Leaving traces of your old logo behind on internal material looks unprofessional and disorganized.
All business systems and marketing materials much be updated, including:
- Name badges, business cards, email signatures and stationery
- Signs and logos
- Internal documents such as forms, contracts and applications
- Word and PowerPoint templates
- Presentation decks
Does trawling through endless internal documents sound so time-consuming that it’s almost thrown you off the idea of a rebrand? Fortunately, rebranding technology is a key way in which the rebranding process can be smoother, as automation can update all the brand elements necessary, and make sure they are accessible for all employees.
Templafy seamlessly rolls out brand identity updates across templates, documents and related brand assets. It maintains visual compliance across all of your internal content, from presentation decks to contracts, and automatically updates any changes for all users.
Our tool ensures that all users only have access to current and compliant content, and alerts users when they open files with old branding. It’s an easy and fast way to ensure that your new brand is fully implemented across your entire company, helping you dodge mistakes and powering the impact of your rebrand.