By Savitha Hira
What are the core essentials of a successful rebranding campaign? Can a seamless integration of progressive consumer mind-sets and evolving business objectives sustain a brand?
A rebranding exercise is born out of various reasons, viz., change in business environment, need to be focussed around a new corporate vision, and the like.
So, what prompts a rebranding exercise? The answer is rhetoric. Changing perceptions of a consumer often necessitate a progressive change in the image of a brand. “The exercise is guided as much by core values that the brand emphasizes and conveys, as by the expectations evoked in the minds of stakeholders,” informs brand consultant Aparna Mehra (Consulting Partner, Brandscapes Worldwide, and Strategy Partner to international branding agency Design Bridge) explaining that rebranding generally means a complete overhaul and includes systematically changing the brand experience in addition to refocusing on the marketing campaigns, level of customer outreach, a rejuvenated physical environment, communication, colours and logo redesign in a 360-degree rebranding endeavour; in short an “image makeover”.
Elaborating on the process of redesign, she says that understanding the core message that the re-engineered brand purports to convey along with peripheral values, if any, become the springboard for the rebranding exercise. This defines the central brand idea and helps formulate a definitive set of creative guiding principles that help the creative in translating the idea into design. Then the logo, corporate colours, signage and stationery are solutions integrated into the overall package. It is a seamless integration and depends on how focused the brand vision or brand position is and how the deliverables are interpreted.
When the redesigned logo emerges out of this exercise, it may need to be tested for its consumer and stakeholder connect; only then does the exercise fructify. Of recent times, is the inclusion of a tag line, which is used as a direct tool that communicates the brand vision to the stakeholder, giving strength to the logo design. “Some success measures for the rebrand that we would generally use are: noticeability, comprehension of the new brand idea, contemporaneity and connect with the target consumer,” she elaborates.
So whether it is to enhance product bandwidth or contemporise a heritage brand, what meets the naked eye in terms of signage and logo redesign has a storyboard backdrop that guides the success story of the redesign activity. “Logo is only one touch-point in the rebranding exercise,” informs Aparna. “For a rebranding to be successful, all touch-points must be in synergy.”
Finally, with companies investing considerable funds in trademark and design registrations, does a rebranding exercise mean a re-take in legal terms too? Manoj Menda, one of the senior-most Patent & Trademark attorneys in India comments, “Legally, one has to re-address copyright, trademark and design issues as soon as one decides on a rebranding exercise. With Trademark renewable every 10 years, generally companies keep it alive – in case the branding exercise is a failure, and the company wishes to revert to their old brand image.” However, this is extremely rare.