The Creative's Guide to Rebranding, Part 2: Reflect & Position
In Part 1 of the Creative's Guide to Rebranding, we discussed how to know if it’s time for a rebrand. If you’re here for Part 2, we’ll assume you’ve decided to tackle a rebrand.
The first thing on your task list when conducting a rebrand is to reflect on your current brand and decide on the positioning for your future brand. There’s no single correct way to do this, but here is my process.
Answer the following questions in a few phrases or sentences. WRITE IT DOWN.
What do you and your audience like about your current brand that you would like to keep? What just feels off, or what do you hate doing, that you want to shed moving forward?
- What do you feel is not being represented in your current brand that you want to become part of your new brand identity?
- Here it’s helpful to think about what topics you love to talk about and read about. Pinpoint what you’re passionate about, and for the remaining questions try to tie these things into your brand values, mission, and customer personas.
- Brainstorm your brand values.
- Think of how you want to be known. Select some words and phrases that encapsulate how you want your clients and customers to feel when working with you, and how you’d envision them talking about your brand. These are the things that you stand for and that you want to convey consistently. Keep these on hand when copywriting and developing brand messaging.
- Identify your unique offering/differentiator/market opportunity.
- Without putting down your competition, why would someone work with you or buy your product? Is there a gap in the market that you’re filling? Is your style or process unique or innovative? Or perhaps it’s old fashioned or simplistic in a refreshing way? This needs to be incorporated into your messaging.
- Establish your mission or purpose.
- Get to the heart of what drives you. Your mission or purpose statement should convey your “reason for being.” This is your North Star. You can come back to it at any point to make sure that what you’re doing and what you’re offering is still in alignment with your mission. Think about incorporating what you do, how you do it, for whom, why you do it, the value you provide, and/or your brand values. Oh and keep it concise ;)
- Describe your ideal customer.
- This is a big one. The purpose is not to just come up with cute names and drawings and demographics of your ideal customers. You need to recognize their inner motivations, struggles, and aspirations, and then operationalize the personas by creating content or products that addresses their problems and developing messaging that appeals to them. It’s crucial that your content, products, and marketing are very targeted and nuanced. Do not try to appeal to everyone. Appeal to someone.
- Come up with 2-3 personas. Give them names, and identify a few basics like age range, relationship/family status, and geographic location if you’d like. Then answer the following questions for each persona.
- What is important to them, and what drives them?
- What do they do professionally and recreationally?
- What is their attitude towards other products/services in your industry?
- What would affect their willingness to purchase from or work with you?
- What blogs do they read and what websites do they frequently visit?
- What would their search terms be?
Once you've done this, keep these personas in mind whenever you’re copywriting, prototyping products and services, and communicating with potential customers. Answer the questions they would be asking through your blog posts/tweets/captions, implement keywords and hashtags that suit their search terms, and quell their concerns about your industry through Q&As and other preemptive content.
Even better: before you start implementing, go out and get some feedback from acquaintances that fit your ideal customer specs. See if they'd be interested in what you have to offer, what questions they would ask, and what sorts of value they would be looking for.
Now, to give you a peek into what this looks like when implemented, here’s a Sparknotes version of my completed Reflection & Positioning process.
What do you and your audience like about your current brand that you would like to keep?
I like talking about health & wellness, and exploring the realm of making more responsible and sustainable (food) choices.
What do you feel is not being represented in your current brand that you want to become part of your new brand identity?
My passions for design, crafting, personal style, as well as my burgeoning interests in minimalism and slow living.
Brainstorm your brand values.
Thoughtfulness. Collaboration. Community. Resiliency. Sustainability. Reasonablism. Slow living.
Identify your unique offering//differentiator//market opportunity.
My wall hangings are crafted from recycled fabrics and repurposed odd objects. My blog explores a journey into more thoughtful and slow living in a fast-paced, consumerist, digital world.
Establish your mission or purpose.
To share my explorations of slow living, through conscious consumer guides, reasonable sustainability tactics, mindfulness tips, and responsibly handmade home decor-- and in doing so, encourage and enable others to adopt more thoughtful and intentional behaviors.
Describe your ideal customer.
Ruth is a crafty and conscious millennial woman. She is a member of the creative class, and works for a small PR startup. She greatly appreciates handmade goods, and has a passion for supporting genuine and strong small business owners. Ruth has an inclination towards sustainability but isn’t totally sure how to actually make more responsible and sustainable choices. Ruth enjoys pinning images of home decor, and frequently reads style blogs like The Man Repeller and Un-Fancy.
Looking for some feedback on your brand positioning? Hit me up at sarah[at]snapfluence[dot]com and I'll give you my 2 cents!
Ready to jump into a rebrand? I made a nifty checklist for ya.
Creative Community Developer at Snapfluence.
I'm the Oxford comma's biggest fan.