B2B Rebranding: How To Get It Right
With the ever-changing landscape of business, staying ahead of the competition requires more than just a great product. It requires an effective branding strategy that will draw customers in and keep them coming back for more.
That's why B2B rebranding is such an important part of any business' success. In this guide written by our branding experts, we'll explore how to get it right when it comes to B2B rebranding - from understanding what you should consider before making any changes and the importance of identifying your motivations for rebranding, to what exactly you can do to get it right.
We'll also provide tips on establishing what type of rebrand you need, so by the end of this guide, you'll have all the knowledge necessary to make sure your next B2B rebranding effort is a success!
Brand refresh vs rebrand: which do you need?
First things first: there are numerous types of rebranding projects that a business can undertake. Identifying which one your company needs can be tricky, but it's also crucial for ensuring that you get the results you want.
Generally speaking, a brand refresh is an evolution of an existing identity and involves varying degrees of change to bring a company up-to-date or address customer feedback. In comparison, a rebrand is typically more radical and often requires a brand overhaul touching on all aspects of a company's identity.
But which one do you need for your own brand?
Well, it's important to consider what your goals are and how much change you're willing to make. Is the goal to refresh an existing identity that has lost its potency, or do you need to make a more dramatic shift in order to make a meaningful impact?
If you're not sure, it could be worth consulting with an experienced branding agency who can help you identify the right type of rebranding project for your company.
Why rebrand in the B2B industry?
Rebranding in the B2B industry is an important part of staying ahead of the competition and ensuring that your customers are engaged with your brand. It allows you to evaluate existing customer relationships, update your brand messaging to be more relevant, and provide a refreshed visual identity to make sure you stand out from the crowd.
For business-facing companies, rebranding can also help you to better reflect your services, showcase new products or offerings, and update existing marketing campaigns.
Rebranding is a major decision, so make sure you do it for the right reasons and give it the focus and attention it deserves. It's a big investment - but if done correctly, can prove hugely beneficial in the long-run. Below we've outlined just a few more reasons you might want to consider a rebrand for your company.
To improve your overarching brand experience
Brand identity is out: brand experience is in.
Brand experience is the entire lifecycle a consumer goes through when interacting with your brand. More than a visual identity or tone of voice, your brand experience is the collective sentiments and impressions a customer has whenever they come into contact with your company.
Rebranding can help you improve overall brand experience by addressing any issues consumers may have had before, or by introducing new ways of engaging with customers to make sure they're more likely to return in the future.
To drive the business case for utilising your brand
New branding can give you the opportunity to re-communicate your elements of value: what you do, how you do it and why businesses need it.
With your brand vision up-to-date and refreshed, you can then use your new branding to drive the business case for using your services.
A good example of this is introducing a new colour palette or logo, which could open up fresh opportunities for marketing and PR campaigns that are more likely to be noticed by businesses. Updating messaging in line with your brand refresh can also help you better articulate the value you offer and the true benefits of doing business with you.
To drive sustainable market share growth
Branding isn't some mystical subject without any quantitative benefit. Highly-effective branding can ultimately drive your bottom line and market share.
This doesn't mean a new logo or new brand name is going to be a fix-all to your B2B organisation's problems - but a full rebrand can really support sustainable growth for your business, when done right.
So if you need hard facts to support buy-in from leadership on a B2B rebrand, keep this in mind.
Why not to rebrand your B2B organisation
To help you really assess your motivation for rebranding, here's why not to rebrand your B2B business.
Because your competitors are doing it
Rebranding your B2B organisation just because competitors are doing it can be a huge mistake.
It's important to consider the core values of your company and how they align with its brand positioning before making any drastic changes. Rebranding should be done strategically, taking into account what is best for the long-term success of your business - not just for short-term gains.
It's also important to remember that successful rebranding requires a significant investment of time, money and resources - so it should always be done with careful consideration. If you’re going to go through the process, make sure the end result will be worth it and your company can reap the rewards it deserves.
Because you're bored
If you're looking for a flippant boost to your entrepreneurial spirit, it's best to opt for a life coach. No, seriously. Don’t get caught up in the shiny new object syndrome and rebrand just because you're bored.
Rebranding should never be done on a whim - it requires strategic foresight and an understanding of how your company needs to evolve with market changes. Rather than opting for a complete rebrand, consider testing out small tweaks or refreshes to stay relevant and up-to-date.
If your audience is bored, on the other hand, the rebranding process could actually prove useful to you. Boredom can be an indication that your company is no longer relevant to the market, and a rebrand may help you recapture attention. But consider it carefully before jumping in.
Because you're new to the company
Seriously... Don't be that guy. The one that overhauls everything they can in an attempt to 'make their mark' on the company. No-one wants to work with those people.
Constantly changing and tweaking your brand will not only end up confusing your employees - but also your customers, creating a lack of trust. People often don't like change, so make sure any rebranding is done for the right reasons rather than just trying to shake things up because you're new.
B2B rebranding: How to get it right
So - you've established that you do in fact need a rebrand - and it's for the right reasons. Now, it's time to get it right.
We've written in detail about How (and How Not) To Rebrand before, but we've built on this below to outline exactly what B2B companies need to do to truly see results - the good kind, that is.
Develop a brand strategy (and execute it!)
This should include a mission statement, brand guidelines, the core values of your company and how you will communicate these to the outside world via your branding. It's also important that this is documented properly, making sure everyone in the organisation has access to it.
With an expert brand strategy in place, the rebranding process will become much smoother and all elements - from the website design to your marketing collateral - will be planned out in detail before you get started.
Work with B2B rebranding experts
The best piece of advice we can give when it comes to the B2B market is to work with experienced rebranding experts. Make sure you have a skilled team of designers on board who understand your vision, as well as expert support with tracking results post-rebrand.
Branding professionals will be able to take your brand vision and make it a reality, understanding the complexities of the B2B industry and how best to market your business in this space. They can also provide valuable insights into what is working (and what isn't!) in the world of B2B branding.
Re-establish your brand's audience and market
Rebranding for B2B companies is a complex process that requires understanding of the customer base in order to be truly successful. For any B2B company, it is essential to develop an intimate connection with your customer base in order to build trust and loyalty. To do this, you must understand who your customers are, what they value, and what they need.
With this in mind, the number one question on your mind during a B2B rebrand should be this: what does your target audience say?
To make sure you’re aiming your rebrand at the right people - and that it aligns with their needs and values - take some time to research them thoroughly. It's also important that your brand is positioned in a way that fits within the wider market context, so you can better compete with other players in this space.
By focusing your efforts on pre-game analysis and strategy, you'll be able to create a rebrand that resonates with your target market and communicates the right message at all the right touchpoints.
Redefine your company's vision, mission, and values
A B2B rebrand is not just about visuals - it's also about brand values. When you're developing a strategy for your business, make sure to include a clear vision of what you want the company to be and how this will manifest throughout your marketing communications.
Your mission should also be included; this should outline what products or services you offer and how you will stand out from competitors. And your values should be what drives your decisions, representing the ethos of the business and affecting internal processes as well as customer experience.
Plan for all outcomes (especially if you’re renaming)
As we've seen in some of the worst rebranding examples we've written about before, things can swiftly go wrong for organisations who don't plan for all possible outcomes.
If you're in the process of renaming your brand, make sure you have thought through all potential reactions and responses to your company's new name - both positive and negative.
Will this new name carry the same brand values? Will the new name maintain brand recognition?
Also, consider how difficult it will be to transition from your current name to the new one - will you have to change all associated websites, domain names and social media handles?
By planning ahead for potential issues, you are much less likely to encounter costly problems in the long run - but more equipped to handle them if they do arise.
Reconsider your brand's slogan
B2B marketing, a brand slogan can be incredibly powerful when it comes to setting your business apart from competitors. Ask yourself whether - in the context of a rebrand - your existing slogan is still relevant and resonates with customers. If not, think about what would work better.
Your slogan should embody your values and be memorable, with the aim of creating an emotional connection with your customers that they will remember. Try playing around with words, characters and imagery to create a catchy phrase that will draw business leaders in and make them want to buy from you.
Reimagine your brand’s visual identity
A new brand identity can be a powerful tool to communicate your company's message and stand out in a crowd. Whether you’re looking for a sleek, modern look or something more traditional and timeless, the right visuals can make all the difference when it comes to rebranding.
Consider different elements such as logo design, colour palettes and typography to create an identity that will stand out and be remembered. And always utilise brand guidelines to ensure your team is consistent in the way they represent your organisation.
Cover all touchpoints
Consistency is crucial in the B2B landscape, so remember your digital and content, too! Your rebrand should cover all digital touchpoints, from your website and blog to emails and social media - making sure that the look and message you are aiming for is clear across all channels.
Your creative content strategy should also be closely aligned with your new identity, as this will help create a unified experience across the customer journey. Keeping up with trends and using visuals that cater to the needs of modern business leaders is essential here.
Looking for expert B2B rebranding support?
At Huddle, we can help you create an effective, impactful and unforgettable B2B rebranding strategy to suit the needs of your business. Our experienced team of designers, strategists and branding experts work closely with our clients to ensure their brand identity is as effective and optimised as possible - helping them make a lasting impression in a saturated market.
Whether you want to reimagine your visual identity, rethink your brand’s message or create a comprehensive plan for all outcomes, we’re here to help. Contact us today to discuss how we can work together to give your B2B rebrand the edge it needs.