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When An Old Rusty Brand Needs Rebranding

outdated rusty brands need rebranding

This story is another in our series of why organizations rebrand. Also read:

Rust has a horrible impact on metal and machinery made of metal components. Rust is created by the oxidation of the metal which has been purged of its impurities. Air and water do not combine well, which triggers the formation of rust as we know it. Over time most metal rusts. Rust hinders performance, putting at risk how well a machine can perform in the future. It is much the same with rebranding.

If a brand – which should represent the heart and soul of your organization - develops rust over time, from neglect or poor management, it can find itself unable to function properly. It is prevented from doing its job of differentiating your company or organization in the marketplace. It needs a tune up, something to clean off the old and create a finely tuned new machine.

Neglecting a brand isn’t always intentional. For many B2B companies they are focused on selling to customers and growing their market share, not in brand building. They don’t spend sufficient time reevaluating their brand positioning, conducting research to gauge their brand sentiment and acceptance in the market. Nonprofit organizations share similar challenges. They were established to serve a need among community members. But as they have became successful at meeting that need they have offered additional companion services and grown beyond their original mission. Their name and reputation are too focused and doesn’t adequately convey all they do. So not to show a disconnect, they don’t nurture their brand and they might hide behind an acronym of their name.

Outdated Brands Need Rebranding

But now, when these organizations are faced with competitive challenges or pressure to grow, they need that brand to work hard from them, they find it too rusty to perform. It’s not creating preference for their product or service and it’s not attracting the right kinds of employees needed to support their growth. A little bit of oil simply won’t work. Their reason for being, the promise to customers or stakeholders needs to be reframed, their mission reinvented and a new name that more succinctly defines their value to customers is chosen.

Rather than continued tinkering with the machine or applying more oil, rebranding allows you to stand up an entirely new brand, an evolution of your legacy brand, that allows you to function at full speed and achieve your full potential. Rebranding works, according to business executives polled by Hanover Research. Its study showed 78 percent of executives say rebranding had a positive impact on their company. It helped to increase customer satisfaction, optimize their brand messaging, and improve market share, in that order. A positive return on the rebranding investment, according to 81 percent of those executives.

So, if no amount of oil will make the brand work to its full potential without squeaking or getting stuck all together, it is time to rebrand.


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