What is Transformational Branding? 8 Strategy Examples
Transformational branding, folks, is not for the faint-of-heart or those clinging to the trends of the marketing world like a barnacle on a ship's hull…
No, transformational branding the next-gen, rocket-fuelled, all-in concept that is going to thrust your brand into the stratosphere, create loyal followers, and have your competitors weeping into their spreadsheets.
In this guide to transformational branding, we’ll cover what it is, how to implement it, and 8 different transformational branding strategies you can get started with today. We’ll also provide examples of brand transformation in action to help you get inspired and motivated, ready to create your own inspiring brand transformations.
Let's dive into the thick of it, shall we?
What is transformational branding?
First up, let's get clear on what transformational branding is. It's not just slapping a new logo on your website or getting a flashy slogan (though, let's be real, who doesn't love a slogan that sticks like bubblegum?)
Transformational branding is about changing the very essence, the DNA of your brand; it's about taking a good, hard look at your brand's core and not just giving it a nip-tuck, but an extremely powerful, distinct glow-up.
To illustrate this point, let's use the analogy of a caterpillar (your current business) morphing into a butterfly (your transformed brand). You're not just adding wings to a caterpillar and calling it a day. You're changing its core, its very being — and that can only happen when you allow it to.
Now, don't get me wrong, caterpillars are great, but butterflies? They're show-stoppers. And with the right brand transformation strategy, your brand can be too.
Brand transformation objectives & benefits
- Reduce client and/or employee turnover to a minimum 🔄
- Boost your brand power to infiltrate larger or more sophisticated client segments 🎯
- Explore new markets, whether geographical or vertical, to expand your reach 🌍
- Stay resilient against the shifting economic and governmental pressures ⛔
- Resolve any negative product or service perceptions for a stellar reputation 🌟
- Create innovative products, new lines of business, or even an entirely new company to make waves! 🚀
Transformational branding in 2023 & beyond
In 2023, and looking forward to 2024, we know that the modern business landscape is a highly competitive place, and a transformational brand strategy is the way to stand out.
Companies are relying more heavily on creative and strategic approaches to build their brand identity and capture their target audiences. By creating unique experiences that continuously engage an audience, companies can differentiate themselves from competitors in powerful ways — and create loyal customers in the process.
From the direct benefit of increased sales to the long-term rewards of building a lasting, standout brand identity, brand loyalty, and emotional connection with your target audience, transformational branding is the power tool that all brands should consider.
And with the current rising power of hype marketing, it's important to note that while building ‘hype’ may work for those global brands, a successful brand transformation doesn't necessarily mean taking part in the hype-race.
For smaller brands, it could simply mean embracing (or creating!) your brand's core values and brand personality — and learning how to harness their power to attain repeat business with your target customers.
Hype marketing in action? Barbie, 2023 (Source)
8 transformational marketing & branding strategy examples to consider
Strategy #1: The Narrative Shift
The first strategy is The Narrative Shift. This is about changing your brand story. It's moving from selling products or services to selling experiences or values. What is your brand’s purpose? Yes, you provide a certain product or service—but what lives at the heart of your brand?
For example, Apple isn't just selling computers. They're selling innovation, creativity, and a lifestyle. They've tapped into a narrative beyond the product, and it’s working pretty darn well, don’t you think?
With a targeted brand purpose, updated brand guidelines, and competitive offerings to solidify the narrative shift in your brand, your audience will see you as more than just another company.
Top tip: add in a sprinkle of influencer marketing and your new brand narrative will have an even bigger impact.
Strategy #2: The Value Proposition Overhaul
Next, we have the Value Proposition Overhaul. This is not just tweaking your unique value proposition; it's about tearing up the rulebook and writing a new one. It's about redefining your customer's problem and how your product can solve it.
By carving out a niche in the market, you can create an emotional connection between your company and its customers. You’re no longer selling a drill; you're selling the ability to build or better yet, the sense of accomplishment from a successful DIY project.
A strong brand transformation can take this unique value and transform it into a complete brand experience, enticing customer loyalty and connecting customers to a larger purpose. It’s about creating a personal connection with your customers that extends beyond the product itself.
Strategy #3: The Customer Experience Redesign
Next, there is the Customer Experience Redesign. This is about reimagining how your customers interact with your brand. From the first touchpoint to the last, every step should be a delightful experience that makes the customer feel special.
It's like going on a first date, you want to impress and leave them wanting more.
To redesign the customer experience, you can start by thinking about what makes your business unique and how it stands out from the competition. From packaging to point-of-sale experiences or even something as simple as a thank you email after sales, every interaction should be designed with thought and purpose.
Strategy #4: The Brand Research Pipeline
For transforming brands, a comprehensive Brand Research Pipeline is essential. This takes the form of customer surveys, focus groups, and interviews to accurately gauge what customers desire from a brand, why they choose one brand over another and how their values align with your own.
A research pipeline ensures that you are in tune with trends and have a deep understanding of your target market. To craft yours, you need a structured approach, one that includes key performance indicators (KPIs), customer segmentation and audience insights.
You should also consider UX research — user testing, usability studies and customer feedback — to ensure your brand is accessible on multiple platforms.
Finally, data analysis is the cornerstone of any research pipeline. Use data-driven insights to inform your marketing campaigns and drive meaningful ROI. With a robust research pipeline in place, brands can confidently evolve with their customers’ needs and remain competitive in a fast-changing market.
Strategy #5: The Brand Identity Remodel
The Brand Identity Remodel allows you to truly take your brand identity to the next level. To do that, you need to dig deep into what sets you apart from the competition. Rebranding is not just about aesthetics; it's about creating an experience that customers can remember for years.
Your brand identity (and subsequent brand image) will also need to stand out from the competition. Utilise brand story-telling, design a unique brand name, logo and tagline, and create on-brand social media visuals that capture the essence of your company.
This will all ultimately help you differentiate yourself from the rest and create a unique emotional connection with customers.
Strategy #6: The Brand Strategy Framework
The power of a brand lies in its brand strategy. So, when transforming your brand, you need a strategy that covers all the main branding elements to keep you on track along the way.
Huddle’s 7-step Brand Strategy Framework incorporates all aspects of a successful transformation, from developing an overarching brand strategy and vision to creating a unified customer experience.
The 7 steps of our strategy framework include:
- Branding specialists
- Competitor analysis & user research
- Brand vision statement
- Visual identity
- Digital design
- Content strategy
With the right branding strategy in place, you can transform your brand and create a powerful emotional connection with your customers. Not only will it help you stand out from the competition, but it will also give you the opportunity to reach new markets and build a truly loyal customer base.
Brief our branding experts today to start transforming your brand.
Strategy #7: The Digital Design Revamp
Your digital design is a crucial aspect of branding, as it’s often the first impression a customer will have of your brand — or at least the most important one. You want to make sure that it is modern, eye-catching and conveys exactly what makes your company unique.
A Digital Design Revamp involves reimagining the entire digital design journey from start to finish, through every touchpoint. This includes creating new website templates, implementing new UX and UI designs, redesigning the digital content for your brand and updating your brand guidelines across all digital channels to reflect this.
With the latest innovative branding technology and professional expertise, teams can make the entire revamp process smoother and more efficient.
Strategy #8: The Brand Promise Relaunch
From your marketing department to your CEO, everyone needs to be on the same page about your brand promise. Often, marketing strategy and business values become misaligned. To fix this misalignment, your brand must understand what it stands for, then create (and deliver on) a promise that aligns with those values.
The Brand Promise Relaunch is designed to refocus your teams on the core values of your company and rebrand them into actionable strategies that all stakeholders can get behind.
This strategy helps you align all your key stakeholders on the purpose of your brand, engage with customers in new ways and create a unified message across all channels. It incorporates everything from new marketing strategies, creative content and advertising campaigns to fresh brand guidelines, website redesigns, social media updates and more.
By implementing this strategy, you can ensure that everyone in your organisation understands what your brand stands for, and how they can deliver on that.
4 examples of brand transformation in action
Example 1: Future Platforms
The above brand identity guidelines are just one piece of the brand transformation journey that Future Platforms have undergone.
With a rebrand centred around a core Brand Identity Remodel strategy, Future Platforms were able to create a modern, clean look that was both professional and attractive. Utilising the power of visual identity, they were able to differentiate themselves from their competitors and create an emotional connection with customers.
The end result was a transformation that improved customer engagement and generated more leads for the business.
Example 2: Hope & Homes For Children
Hopes & Homes For Children’s rebranding campaign is the Narrative Shift strategy in action.
By combining powerful visual and messaging concepts (centred around ending the institutionalisation of children worldwide) with a bold, confident, disruptive and surprising narrative, the brand transformed into a showstopping giant in the industry.
They have since been shortlisted for Third Sector Awards in the "Excellence in Brand Development" category.
Example 3: AvaTrade
The Value Proposition Overhaul strategy is perfectly illustrated in the Be More Bolt campaign by award-winning online trading platform AvaTrade.
While the ideas of Usain Bolt and stock trading may seem like chalk and cheese, this brand transformation integrates them into one powerful visual narrative. Yes, they are selling a trading platform. But this brand campaign sells much more than that:
“Be More Bolt: With AvaTrade’s support and winning mindset, traders can get up and running fast.”
By redefining their value proposition and selling a “winning mindset” as opposed to a mere product, AvaTrade became more than just a trading platform. The Be More Bolt campaign allowed AvaTrade to stand out in the increasingly crowded trading marketplace.
With an eye-catching logo and clever use of Usain Bolt as a metaphor for success, the company was able to connect their value proposition with potential customers on a deeper level, while also conveying their core message: that with AvaTrade, budding traders will receive much more than just a platform.
Example 4: VibeIQ
With a comprehensive brand identity remodel and complete Digital Design Revamp strategy, VibeIQ were able to create a more unified, recognizable brand identity that better represented their core values and resonated with customers.
This transformation helped them stand out from the competition, attract more customers and generate greater leads for their business. With the support of Huddle's branding specialists, VibeIQ was able to navigate these complicated transformation journeys with ease.
Huddle's transformational branding services provide a second-to-none solution for brands undergoing a transformation journey.
By combining powerful visual and messaging concepts with clever brand storytelling strategies, companies can build an emotional connection with their audiences, create a unified brand identity and differentiate themselves from competitors in the process.
With Huddle's experienced branding specialists to guide you through every step of the transformation journey, you can be sure that your brand will go further and truly stand out.
Whether you’re looking for a complete revamp or just want to refine certain aspects of your brand identity, we can help.
Brief us today to get your brand transformation underway!
Transformational branding: FAQs
What is an example of brand transformation?
One great example of brand transformation is the rebranding of Future Platforms, a software development company. By utilising a comprehensive Brand Identity Remodel strategy, they were able to create an entirely new look and feel that better reflected their core values and resonated with customers.
What is transformational marketing?
Transformational marketing is a strategy that has become increasingly popular in today’s market. It involves taking a comprehensive approach to brand transformation by utilising a range of strategies that market the transformation of your brand.
Transformational strategies could include the Brand Identity Remodel, Digital Design Revamp, Narrative Shift and Value Proposition Overhaul. These strategies help brands build a more unified, recognizable brand identity that resonates with their customers.
What is a transitional brand?
A transitional brand is a company that is in the process of changing and evolving its identity. This typically involves modifying their visuals, messaging, positioning and other elements to better align with their core values and reflect their new direction. Transitioning brands often go through various stages of transformation until they reach their desired destination.