A highly recognisable brand that is instantly tied to a quality product or reliable service is the Utopia that businesses aim for. And we know it’s a long haul to get your brand well known. But those elements of the brand that comprise visual recognition – the logo, the colours, the fonts, the secondary language, do need a refresh from time to time. And occasionally they need an overhaul. The trick is to know when.
Marketing experts say that a brand should be invigorated every five or six years. That may mean that logos are tweaked to better work with evolving mediums, taglines reviewed and colours examined. Gone are the days of worrying about a stacked logo taking up too much print space. Now we want something that will bounce out of Facebook or Instagram.
At a minimum, business owners should:
Carry out research to see how your brand is viewed in the marketplace. Is it seen as tired, old-fashioned? Is it recognised at all? What’s the recall on key elements of your look and message?
What you should be doing
- Your research will tell you whether you need a total overhaul of your brand (revolution) of if you can refresh it by making some small but important changes (evolution).
- Engage experts in this space to help you.
- Any messaging that is attached to the brand needs to be considered to see if it still portrays what you do, what your positioning is in your marketplace and that it reflects current society values. Sometimes a small change – for instance from “The place to go…” to “Your place to go…” is all that is needed to turn your tagline into a client benefit message.
- Colours are something that every brand needs to consider carefully. There’s colour psychology where research says that blue reflects trust and dependability, red is excitement and boldness, green is peace, health and nature and yellow is happiness and optimism. What do you want your brand to say?
What not to do
- Brand evolution or revolution is not a job that should be done by an in-house management committee. It needs a fresh eye, and a distance from the emotion your team will have to your brand. You need experts in branding and marketing and how it’s applied. What are the pitfalls if you go down a certain path? You need to test concepts extensively before you go to the expense of making change.