A lot of the work I do as a brand architect and graphic designer is creating meaningful, cohesive visual brand identities for small businesses, entrepreneurs, and nonprofits. After supporting hundreds of clients as they launch their updated branding, it’s become clear what it takes to optimize the process.
Deciding to rebrand your business is no small thing. If you’ve invested in a rebrand and are trying to figure out how to make the absolute most of your rollout strategy, this article is for you!
Every business is different, but here are a few crucial considerations everyone should have on their radar when introducing new branding.
Offer hints at the new branding to generate excitement.
Whether you realize it or not, your brain associates certain visual elements with brands you encounter regularly. The same colors, fonts, and logos over and over in your scroll become the familiar face of a business! Introducing new branding without warning can confuse your followers. That’s why I suggest easing them into the news.
You can drip little bits of info here and there in advance of your launch date to give your followers a heads-up that changes are coming. Beyond preparing them, so they don’t miss things, this strategy also helps them feel like insiders who are more connected to your brand.
Teasers on social media might include things like:
- Behind-the-scenes posts or stories about the process of working with your designer
- Sneak peeks of new merchandise or packaging
- Clever “coming soon” posts to build hype and anticipation
- Slow introductions of new brand colors or fonts as a way to gradually transition your visuals
Enlist your designer’s help to make sure that you are within new brand guidelines as you make the graphics for these posts.
Plan ahead for new merchandise, print materials, and signage.
Once your new brand is out there, you will want to ditch anything with your old branding.
To avoid waste and be ready for launch, get creative about using the materials you have. You might hold a vintage merch sale to reduce inventory, do some strategic gifting, or send a targeted mailing to use up excess postcards/brochures. After all those efforts, you may still need to recycle some things. The key is not mixing and matching old and new branding.
Prepare well in advance to finalize the design and production of things like:
- Business Cards
- Merchandise and gifts
- Signage if you have a physical location
- Decals if you have branded vehicles
Production and installation timelines depend on factors like product availability and installer schedules, so it’s helpful to have these items in the works before your launch.
Schedule your launch day.
Changing everything over to the new branding on the same day is ideal. Of course, there are always exceptions, and a few things will likely need to happen in the weeks before or after launch day.
The one exception is your website. Launch your updated site a day or so in advance so that you can have some trusted supporters poke around and identify any issues that need fixing before you send lots of traffic.
Create a clear plan and checklist that outlines what needs to happen and who is responsible for each item. Launch day is an all-hands-on-deck effort, so enlist the help of your team.
You’ll want to create your newly branded digital assets in advance, saving them in an organized way so you can upload and make things live on the big day.
“Having a launch day checklist is your best friend when it comes to having a successful launch day. Outlining all of the creative, technical, and marketing tasks that need to be done ahead of time will ensure that you won’t miss something, which will help you have a more stress-free launch.” – Melissa from Murgio Enterprises
Here are some of the many things to include on your launch day checklist:
- Email templates
- Social media profiles
- Google Business Listing
- Profiles on professional subscription sites
- Profiles on review sites
- PDFs, lead magnets resources
- Bumpers and title cards of branded video assets
- Email signatures
- Social media ads
- Invoices, contracts, or other client workflow assets
Align your team around your rebranding story and visual brand guidelines.
If you have a team, every member of it should understand why you rebranded and be able to tell the same story about your new visual brand identity.
To get everyone on the same page, consider a meeting or series of meetings to solidify rebranding talking points. You can also create a one-pager summarizing these to share with everyone. Be sure to also share the Brand Identity Guide from your designer or a condensed version with just the basics for quick reference.
Ensure your team is prepared by sharing the launch day timeline and installing the necessary logo files and fonts on everyone’s devices. Communication is vital so that everyone who represents your brand feels confident and so no one lets the cat out of the bag too soon!
Spread the news about your new look!
Once you have switched over your branding in every possible place, it’s time to let people know about it!
Always think about making your announcement in concentric circles. As mentioned above, your team should know the reason for the rebrand before publicly sharing the news. From there, it’s time to announce things to your clients, subscribers, social followers, and networking groups. Your emails, social captions, and blog posts are all opportunities to share the reasons for your rebrand and stories about the experience.
You could simply send an email and schedule some social posts announcing the change. Or, you could get creative with contests, giveaways, an unveiling event, or gifts to add to the enthusiasm. Enlist the help of referral partners and related businesses to help boost the signal on your posts and get more people familiar with your new look sooner.
Are you considering a rebrand this year? I’d love to help.