Five signs your brand needs a refresh.
Your brand says a lot about you. Your brand is your identity. It tells your story, builds your relationships and determines your market position. A well-crafted, authentic brand can do as much, if not more, for your business as any other marketing or sales effort. On the flipside, an ineffective brand that doesn’t represent who you really are can do significant damage.
With this in mind, it’s important to audit your brand every now and then and assess whether your brand identity is telling the right story. Is it making the right impressions? Is it serving your purpose?
If you are unsure as to whether this applies to your brand, we’ve put together a few warning signs that might help you decide.
Your visual identity is inconsistent.
One of the key factors of an effective brand is consistency. Whether it’s on your website, social accounts, adverts etc, anyone interacting with your brand should get the same experience.
Go to your website, LinkedIn, Insta & Facebook. Would someone not connected to your business recognise your brand across these sites? Is your language consistent? Is your imagery following a theme? If not, it might be time to look at why you’re are not providing a recognisable cohesive experience.
Your brand voice doesn’t match who you are
A brand is much more than a logo and imagery. A great brand is built on a strong core identity – your purpose, journey, and values – and this has to come across in how you speak. In addition, it’s not just what you say but how you say it – your tone of voice. Are you serious or playful? Corporate or creative? Are you understated or bold?
These are all things that should come across in your written communications and if they aren’t currently there then getting them in should be a priority.
Your logo doesn’t work in the new world
As we very much know, the world is changing, rapidly. The pace of change can quickly leave trends and styles feeling dated and tired. If your brand/logo was put together more than five or so years ago then it’s definitely worth reviewing how well it can be applied to current attitudes & media trends. Is it suitable for banners, buttons, homepages and favicons? Does your logo wording and associated imagery work in high resolution? Is your logo accessible or is it over-complicated?
If in doubt, keep it clean-looking, simple and able to render in any resolution.
Your brand looks like your competitors
There’s a reason why many brands in certain industries look similar. What can start as an attempt to follow trends can quickly become carbon copies of those around you. Ideas get duplicated and straplines become cliched.
Over time it’s easy to blend in with a competitor but the whole point of your brand is to be distinctive. You can quickly lose your identity without realising it.
If you’re also losing business or market share maybe it’s time to stop being like all the rest. A bold new logo, colour palette and reimagined voice will soon sort you out.
Your business is expanding
We touched on this earlier with a changing world. Your business may be changing. You might be launching a new product, division or simply aiming at a new demographic.
Much like we need to change strategy, sometimes our brand identity needs to evolve to match. Different people react differently to certain imagery or tone and you have to ensure your target audience will respond to your brand positively. Great brands are scalable and flexible enough to cover expanse and strong enough to build on further.
So…we hope this gives you some pointers as to whether or not your brand is fit for purpose, for engaging and keeping clients as well as being representative of who you are or who you want to be.
As a finishing point, to ensure that you don’t have to keep doing this over and over again, you should invest in a proper brand style guide. This isn’t to say that your brand won’t keep evolving, but will help you guarantee that as it does, your core values and identity are adhered to. It’s also incredibly useful as your team grows, for people to be able to have something to refer to – and for you to be able to relax for five minutes from your brand police role 🙂
If you want to discuss how to go about refreshing your brand, or would like support in the process, please get in touch. Find out more about our brand services here.