Updated Dec. 31, 2020
Creating a new brand is an exciting milestone in the life of a company. The rebranding process itself is challenging and rewarding, but it is just the beginning of an evolution.
A company’s name and logo live on countless platforms, from its business cards to its vehicle fleet. For an existing company, it is almost always unrealistic to “flip the switch” on a new brand and change everything simultaneously. Yet, it’s important to roll out the branding within a reasonable timeframe to avoid confusing the target audience by using multiple versions of the brand in the marketplace.
So, showing the shiny, new brand to the world requires careful planning, implementation and additional expense. With a prioritized brand implementation checklist and budget as a guide, you can implement your new look in a manageable way, while still making a splash. Use this checklist as a guide to consider how to tackle the conversion.
Start with client communication. Tell existing customers the reason that your company rebranded and what the new brand represents. Loyal customers deserve to be the first to know, so the different look does not confuse or concern them. They want to know that it’s still the company and service they trust.
In the blog post introducing Colepepper Plumbing’s “fiery new look,” KickCharge wrote: “We might have done a 180 with our look, but our valued service hasn’t changed a bit. In fact, we believe the new brand and website will only enhance the relationships we’ve built with our customers in San Diego, CA, and across our service area. We are fully committed to leading the industry and adapting our business to best serve our customers—and these changes are a true testament to that.”
In addition to the company blog, spread the word via email (don’t forget to update the logo in the email template, if you have one), and even consider a standard mailing if it’s a good way to reach relevant folks in your market.
A news release is another consideration for your rebranding checklist, if the new corporate identity rollout is announced in conjunction with something newsworthy that’s of public interest, such as celebrating an anniversary, moving into a new office, sponsoring a community event or fundraiser, partnering with another business, expanding services or adding positions on staff.
Business Cards and Stationery
This is a no-brainer. If handing a business card to a lead is a common first interaction for your employees, it must be redesigned with the new brand immediately. Make it count—get creative with use of the logo and brand colors, and think differently. Two-sided cards, rounded corners, unique paper stocks and spot UV printing are some ideas for making business cards beautiful.
It’s simple and relatively inexpensive to implement new branding on letterhead and business forms. Since this stationery is a regular, frequent part of customer interactions, put this item high on the brand refresh checklist.
Though it’s costly, for a retail operation, it’s important for signage to match the brand. Resist the urge to modify the logo’s proportions to fit the available space. Instead, modify the sign accordingly to accommodate the logo, and use the space as effectively as possible. Remember, it’s less important to prominently display a website URL and phone number on signs when the customer is already on site. So, include a sign that’s professionally designed into your brand implementation plan and budget.
Company vehicles are like moving billboards. Take advantage of this unique, yet cost-efficient way to expose your brand to a large number of people. When designed properly, vehicle wraps are highly effective. Ensure that the design stands out with the logo displayed clearly, so that it will not be forgotten.
Ideally, when budget allows, you can make the biggest impact by rolling out rebranded vehicles all at once. This can be cost- and time-prohibitive for a company with a large fleet. Two ways to tackle updating vehicle wraps are to implement the new brand only on new vehicles, or to strip off old lettering and replace it with a redesigned wrap.
KickCharge is so passionate about power vehicle wrap design for home service contractors that it would never consider a brand rollout plan without it. Check out our portfolio of head-turning trucks.
Since your employees are your brand ambassadors, putting the new brand on their uniforms should be a top priority in your brand implementation process. Ensure that they are dressed neatly and professionally. Integrate the brand colors into the design and avoid adding details like the phone number and website address—just the logo will do.
Replace the logo on your company website as soon as the new brand is introduced. Full brand integration should follow soon after, with a website redesign that implements colors, icons and typography that coordinate with the new logo. The new website should relay your brand promise, making the brand shine. Treat the website like the virtual front door most prospective customers enter the first time they interact with you.
Don’t make the mistake of simply swapping your old logo with your new one and calling that a website rebrand. A branded site fully incorporates the new identity visually and in its voice.
Ensure that the new logo is plugged into social media graphics when the brand launches, because social media networks will be an obvious place to announce the change. Remember to update your company’s presence on all of these channels, and consider starting an account with the new brand if one doesn’t already exist—anywhere that is a relevant place for the company to communicate. Social channels include, but are not limited to:
Social media could be the place a potential customer decides to search your company name for the first time to get to know who you are, so it’s important it portrays your brand accurately.
Finally, print collateral, such as brochures and sell sheets, need the new brand implementation. It’s a good opportunity to review more than just their design; do the copy and overall messaging reflect your brand promise and differentiators? Just like in all of the marketing tools listed above, use the new brand as an opportunity to put a fresh face forward in the market.
Rebrand Implementation Checklist
If you’re working on a rebrand implementation plan for 2021, you should prioritize refreshing the following assets with your new look and brand voice:
- Announcement to existing customers (blog post, email, news release, print mailing)
- Business cards and stationery
- Social media
- Print collateral
Still on the fence about making the leap? Check out the eye-popping transformations for these small businesses.
If you want some help, the KickCharge Creative team is your ally. We’ve helped thousands of businesses rebrand, and we’ve done it ourselves, too. Let’s talk about your brand refresh rollout plan!