Rebranding is a big job but one which can pay dividends. If you’re thinking about it, here are my 5 tops tips to guide you through the process – both before and during.


  1. Be clear on why you’re doing it

This might sound like I’ve started with an obvious point but you do need to think about what you need your rebrand to achieve.  Are you trying to target a new market?  Do you need to shed an old, out-dated or even tarnished image or reputation?  Do you just fancy a change?  All of these (and more) are valid reasons but if you have a defined goal it will keep you focussed throughout the rebrand process, not only in terms of results but also at the times when it feels like really hard work (“Why did we start this?!”) and you need some motivation to keep going.


  1. Do your homework

Research, research, research.  You can’t do too much research so BEFORE you press the GO button on your rebrand, spend as much time as you possibly can fact-finding.  Questions you should be asking include: What do my staff like/dislike about our existing brand? What do my clients like/dislike about our existing brand?  What values do we need the new image to represent? If the rebrand includes a rename, what domain names are available (and will our new name translate into relevant other languages, or be abbreviated to something inappropriate)?  What colours/images/straplines do our competitors use (and what do we like/dislike about these)?


  1. Write a checklist of everything that currently carries your branding

Again, if you can do this before you decide to rebrand, this information will be vital.  Write that list – everything from the physical building signage to your social media profiles, from printed stationery to corporate clothing – and price up what it will cost to replace ALL OF IT.  This is likely to be a scarily large number but forewarned is forearmed; it might help focus your mind on whether you actually need to rebrand entirely. It will also help decide if you want a ‘soft launch’ of new branding (a phased or gradual approach) or if it really needs to be an ‘all-or-nothing’ everything in one go approach.


  1. Write a proper implementation plan

Yes, I know, I’m preaching to the choir here but bear with me.  It is worth going to the lengths of working out what tasks need to be done and in what order they need to happen (yes, probably a Gantt chart!) and build in some contingency time so you really understand how long this process is going to take.  This will also help you to identify where you critical success factors are; for example, it may be possible for your web designer to build 90% of a new website without knowing what you new logo (or corporate colours?) are but it certainly won’t be able to launch without that.  It perhaps goes without saying that you need to build in any external deadlines too; if you regularly exhibit at an industry exhibition, are we starting the process with enough time to have completed it by then? If you’re working with a professional for your rebrand, they should be able to help you schedule the tasks.


  1. Remember to take everyone with you on this journey!

Rebranding is a journey and one that you are unlikely to be taking alone.  Depending on the size of your organisation, you may have a project team who are actually taking part in the development and implementation stages with you but you are also likely to have a wider interested audience: other staff, shareholders and partners, customers, even neighbours and your wider business network.  Think about what they will need to know about the rebrand for them to understand and ‘buy in’ to it and build in to your plan the time to tell them.  Your customers, for example; are you going to give them any warning of the rebrand or just spring it on them as a big surprise on launch day?