Rebranding? 5 ways to use PR to get your new brand on point

Ok – before I start this blog post, I’m going to share an industry secret with you: your logo is not your brand.

I know, it’s a bit mind-blowing isn’t it? In fact, your logo is simply one part of a whole package that makes up your brand identity – which includes everything from your purpose as an organisation to your values, and the way you carry out your business.

Your brand is your organisation’s personality. It’s what people think of when they come across your company. It’s how your customers feel when they engage with your teams and use your products.

So when you’re rebranding, you’re not just creating a new look. You’re overhauling the very essence of your business. And that’s why communicating your new brand successfully, explaining what makes you different from before (and just as crucially what stays the same), is so important.

Although I’m not disputing a lot of work goes into a rebrand, getting that new identity to stick is perhaps an even greater task. I’m actually thinking of the fact that Starburst are still Opal Fruits to me (showing my age) but there are countless other examples of rebranding horrors that have cost the companies involved financially, reputationally, or both.

PR has a huge part to play here and that’s why your PR team – or agency – should be involved right from the very start.

  1. Plan your strategy together

    Giving your PR team a signed-off rebrand to launch is like presenting a chef with a cooked dinner and asking them to transform it into a gourmet dish. Your PR team is a massive asset – it knows your customers and it knows how the media is likely to respond too. Bring them in early so you can align your strategies. Agree the goals you’ll all be working towards and set expectations – how will you know your rebrand has been successful? What will you be measuring and how often?

  2. Know your audience

    Your PR team has a wealth of insight into your customers and the media that will help you reach them most effectively. They can tell you what motivates your audience and what keeps them up at night. Your PR team knows when your audience is online, where they get their news and updates, and who they trust. And they can tell you how your competitors are engaging with them, along with what’s working and what’s falling flat.Work with your PR team in the development stages, add their information to the knowledge you already have, for an even better idea of what your customers love and what turns them off ahead of your rebrand.

  3. Develop messaging that hits the spot

    Why are you rebranding? Why wasn’t your old brand telling your story anymore? Your PR team will help you to put these thoughts into words that will really resonate with your customers, prospects, employees, partners, and other stakeholders. And they’ll test them ahead of the launch to make sure there’s nothing that can come back to bite you later on!

  4. Update all your assets

    You’ve launched your rebrand – ta-dah! Only to discover that co-workers in a separate team are still using your old logo, a press release has been issued with the out-of-date boilerplate, or there’s a rogue social media account pumping out your old messaging.Don’t let an oversight undo all your hard work. Take control – work with your PR team to audit your assets (you could even use it as an opportunity to declutter), and update them ahead of your launch. Then switch over everything at the same time.

  5. Bring your employees onboard

    Your employees can be your greatest ambassadors – imagine how powerful it would be if everyone in your organisation shared your rebrand and the reasons why it matters. Aligning your internal and external messaging, and launching your rebrand to your staff before your PR campaign kicks off gives you a safe space to try out your approach, and builds the connection between employee and brand that’s so important for any rebrand to work. Think of it as internal PR – it’s incredibly valuable.A word of warning: don’t be surprised if there’s an attachment to your old brand, even if you feel it was past its sell-by date. Anticipate that connection and take note of what’s being said internally – it’s likely to be true for your customers (and the media) too. Share your experience with your PR team; – they’ll adapt their approach based on what you’ve learnt.

And then, there’s always the option to engage a PR company with rebranding experience. They’ll guide you through the process and make sure you’re supported every step of the way.

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