CEOWORLD magazine - Latest - Tech and Innovation - Rebranding for all the right reasons

Tech and Innovation

Rebranding for all the right reasons

Companies often spend considerable resources over many years building their corporate brands. So why would anyone risk all that on a rebrand? It may seem perilous to purposefully alter how your company shows up in the marketplace, and potentially throw away brand equity in the process.

But it turns out there are some really good reasons to undergo a rebrand. Whether the work includes a name change, a design overhaul, a completely new personality, or all of the above, a rebrand can be the perfect strategy to launch the business into a new phase of growth. An opportunity to be known for something bigger and better than before. 

If you’re considering a rebrand, here are some indicators the timing may be right for you. 

Right reason #1: Big change in business strategy 

When your company undergoes significant changes, such as repositioning, entering new markets, or making substantial advancements in products or services, it’s crucial to align your brand strategy with your new business strategy. The existing brand systems, including messaging, personality, and visuals, may no longer be in sync with the new direction of the company. A strategic rebranding effort will provide you and your team with the necessary tools to effectively communicate the value of your business and its offerings, ensuring that your brand fully supports your evolving business strategy.

In fact, the rebrand itself can serve to signal important changes to stakeholders. When a business goes through significant transformations, some changes worth touting may seem invisible. A rebrand tells the world “there’s something new here,” and can help create conversations around the new direction of the business. When Andersen Consulting went through massive business transformation at the turn of the century, it was the announcement of the new name Accenture that signaled a new era had arrived.

Right reason #2: Making the most of a merger or acquisition 

Mergers and acquisitions often necessitate a rebrand to address overlapping services, conflicting messaging, and to help sales teams struggling to sell the combined offering. A rebrand can make the most of M&A activity, serving as a unifying force and aligning the brand identity of the newly formed entity to the promise you saw when undergoing the merger or acquisition. 

TransUnion recently refreshed its brand and aligned its business product portfolio under seven solution groups, consolidating thousands of products gained through organic investment and acquisitions. The effort was significant, but ultimately simplified the offering and has made it more accessible to business customers. 

“Our brand strategy follows our business strategy. Our acquisitions gave us the ability to deliver on an enhanced value proposition, so it was important to communicate that in the market,” says Rachel Klein, VP Global Brand and Marketing at TransUnion. 

Right reason #3: Your business has evolved; your brand has not

It’s not uncommon for visionary leaders and capable teams to drive the business forward—bigger clients, more employees, new offerings, new markets—only to realize down the line that the brand expression no longer reflects the current state of their company. In such cases, the name, marketing materials, website, and sales collateral may no longer accurately represent the company’s current state, and it may even hold the business back. 

Saylite, formerly known as Texas Fluorescents, experienced this situation in a lighting industry transformed by LED. Jon Sayah, President at Saylite, stated, “At the time of our rebrand, we’d seen more change in the previous five years than in the five decades before. Our name was confusing to the marketplace since it reflected our roots in fluorescent lighting. We had moved way beyond that.” In this case, rebranding was necessary to align the brand with the company’s reality and create a brand that reflects their evolved business.

Rebrand or not rebrand? That is the question

Rebranding is not a decision to be taken lightly. It’s a considerable challenge that even on a good day may take more time, resources, and attention than planned. And if your team or partners may be doing the heavy lifting, as CEO the weight of the decision rests on your shoulders.

But when done well and for the right reasons you may find it’s one of the most consequential initiatives you’ve undertaken. And it definitely helps you sleep at night.

Written by Charlene Gervais.
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CEOWORLD magazine - Latest - Tech and Innovation - Rebranding for all the right reasons
Charlene Gervais
Charlene Gervais is a Partner and Consultant with Bluegreen Branding. She specializes in brand strategy consulting for B2B brands in the tech and financial space, especially those at critical inflection points such as rebranding during M&A, or launching new products and services.

Charlene Gervais is an opinion columnist for the CEOWORLD magazine. Connect with her through LinkedIn.