Rebrand without Sabotaging Your Current Biz!
When you start your business it’s like a wild love affair, it’s new, it’s exciting but sometimes, after a while, things change…
- You’re going through the motions, but the passion just isn’t there.
- You start seeing happy colleagues and wonder what they’ve got going on that you’re missing.
- You’re afraid to change direction because you’re not sure what comes next.
Your relationship with your business is not unlike a romantic relationship.
Sometimes you’re just not a good match, or you begin to grow apart as you grow as a person.
The good news is, breaking up with your business can be much easier than breaking up with a person. And there’s no shame in moving on quickly to your new flame, (or *gasp* even having a dalliance on the side until you’re ready to make the switch).
But how do you morph your business into something new, exciting, and that suits where you are now?
This is when you might want to consider rebranding.
Branding is all about building a reputation around your business that is built on your message and connects with your audience. Rebranding is merely shifting the perception around your existing business and all the work you’ve done up until now doesn’t need to go to waste.
Chances are, if you’re thinking about rebranding it’s not because you want to start a completely new business (like underwater basketweaving). More likely, you want to shift focus around who you’re working with, the services you’re offering, or you have a new mission that you want to incorporate.
In most cases, the work you’ve already done can easily follow you in your new direction.
- Prospects that are already on your list and active in your community.
- Offerings you’ve already created and that could be re-worked with your new message.
- Collateral like a website design or other graphic materials that could be adapted for your new brand.
The truth is, even if you make significant changes to your brand – most people aren’t going to be as confused as you think.
Your audience knows you on a very personal level. As a service provider your brand isn’t identified by a logo on a shelf of other similar products. You’re you no matter what direction your business heads.
If you’ve been doing your due diligence and building a relationship with your audience they will readily follow you in your new direction, and as long as you let them know what’s up they aren’t going to be confused.
On the other hand, those newly becoming aware of you won’t know what your message was before anyway so there is no risk of confusion.
So what’s the protocol for introducing a new brand?
I’ve worked behind the scenes during hundreds of rebrands, and there are always nuances that need to be decided based on your stage of business, offers, and whether your new brand is about “upping your game” or changing your direction completely.
That said, there are certain actions that are universal.
- Begin using your new message sooner than later.
The first step is getting very clear on what your new message is and begin working it into your marketing right away. This happens long before you rewrite your website or change your visual branding components. Because let’s face it, it can take a while for those pieces to be ready anyway.
By sharing your new messaging sooner than later you’re able to test and find what your audience responds best to so you can refine your message. This will go a long way to building your confidence and knowing that your message is going to “land” for the right people after your new website launches.
2. Give your current audience a “peek behind the scenes”
As you create your new brand in the background, talk about the process you’re going through, share why you’re making the changes, and even give “sneak peeks” of milestones as you go along.
This will give you a way to share your new message as mentioned in step 1, AND it makes your audience feel closer to you as they witness your evolution real-time.
When you’re ready to launch, things should go pretty smoothly because your community will have been cheering you on the whole time and are excited for the new things you’re going to offer.
3. Treat your rebrand like a launch.
Revealing a new brand is an exciting time for your business and you definitely want to make the most of it. Use this opportunity to create more visibility for yourself and get in front of more people who don’t already know you.
Some things you can do to create buzz are:
- Get your partners talking about your new message and maybe have them share your new lead magnet or a webinar with their audience.
- Run Facebook Ads that tell the story of your evolution and the big mission you’re committed to.
- Write a press release or pursue other PR opportunities to coincide with your big reveal.
- Do a podcast and/or guest blogging tour and make sure the publishing dates line up with the launch of your new brand.
These are three great things to do that will help you make the most of this exciting time in your business, and I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the one BIG thing NOT to do.
Do not throw out your old website or materials.
If you’ve been in business long enough to require a “rebrand” then chances are you have material that is listed on Google and other websites that bring you traffic. If you delete these things then you’re killing a huge traffic source for yourself.
Have your webmaster help you point your “old stuff” to relevant “new stuff.” So your old domain can be pointed to your new one. Old blog posts can be pointed to your new blog. Old lead magnets or URL’s that you mentioned in talks you’ve done over the years can go to new landing pages that pick up with what visitors are expecting to see, and lead them into what you have right now.
All in all, rebranding is an exciting time in your business. When done right it can be a huge opportunity for increasing your visibility and a catalyst for a quantum leap in revenue!
Holly Chantal is the brand and messaging genius behind many of today’s greatest coaches. She specializes in working with established coaches who have reached an “upper limit” in their business bring their message, offers, and business model into alignment with their next stage of growth. You can find her at www.hollychantal.com.