Rebrand or Refresh? Which Is Suitable for Your Brand?

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The terms rebranding and brand refresh are often used interchangeably. And for most people, both seem to be one and the same, representing a brand’s evolution and adaptation in a rapidly changing market.

However, the two concepts are polar opposites, representing different directions that a particular brand has chosen to move into

What’s rebranding?

According to a trusted creative design agency, rebranding is just like remodeling a home – you tear down the existing structures to make way for the new. There may be parts left from the old house, but essentially, you have a fully transformed home. Rebranding entails a total revamp of the brand identity. This is done to change a brand’s message and the public’s perception of it. Often, this involves drastic changes, ranging from changing the brand name, recalibrating the visual elements (logo, fonts, colors), and altering the brand messaging.
It is worthwhile to note that rebranding is not something that should be done on a regular basis.

Why rebrand?

When should you consider rebranding?

● Rebranding is necessary when you are changing your brand name. Such a drastic change requires an equivalent action that informs your customers about the new direction that you are taking as well as the rationale behind that.
● When the ownership of a company changes for whatever reason, but especially if the parting is seen in a negative light, rebranding is done to recalibrate the public’s perception and expectations about the brand. For the new owners and their customers, rebranding heralds changes that are about to come.
● Finally, a company’s rebrand can come as an offshoot of its evolution. Over time, your original vision for your company may no longer resonate with your target audience as the market, and even your brand, evolves. Here, rebranding is used as a means to tell customers about the new direction that you are taking.

What’s a brand refresh?

Between the two, a brand refresh is the less drastic action. Typically, it entails a few updates in a brand’s visual assets while still retaining the elements that still work for it.
Usually, brands that undergo a refresh retain the core elements of the brand while revamping their typography, colors, photography, and other visual elements.
If rebranding can be compared to remodeling a house, a refresh is similar to repainting.

Why opt for a brand refresh?

● A brand’s core elements typically remain the same throughout a brand’s lifespan. In contrast, visual elements like photos, fonts, and colors can become outdated. As such, it is not unusual for brands to undergo a refresh every five years to keep pace with the passing of time.
● Another reason why brands undergo a refresh is to upgrade its visual style. Usually, when a company is just starting out, little to no attention is given to a brand’s visual elements. But as time passes and the brand gains traction in the market, a company may want to update its visuals to reflect its growth.
● In addition, a company can opt for a refresh is when your brand wants to establish a connection with another segment of the market. Combining changes in the visual elements and messaging, a refresh can build a relationship with a different audience.

Rebrand or refresh?

The marketplace is continuously changing, and along with these changes comes the evolution of the tastes and demands of consumers. And to keep pace with those changes, your brand should also make the necessary adjustments.
● In most cases, a refresh is precisely what a brand needs to align itself with current market conditions and what consumers want. If you have built a solid foundation for your brand and you currently have a loyal fan base for your products or services, you can give your brand a refresh to help it go from strength to strength.
A refresh can go beyond updating its visual elements and messaging. Sometimes, it can be used as a jump-off point to evaluate and update your strategies. However, at its core, your brand should remain necessarily the same.
● Rebranding is a drastic action that can have far-ranging effects, especially when you commit missteps. You might be selling the same products or services, but rebranding puts you in a different direction.
As such, you should tread carefully if you do not want to commit unnecessary mistakes that can hurt your brand and alienate your current customers. Take into account the brand equity that you have built and what the impact of a rebrand can have on it. Whether you opt for a refresh or a rebrand, your customers should always come front and center. Otherwise, you can come under severe scrutiny and backlash, especially in an age where brands are always under close scrutiny online, especially social media.
In short, your brand perception should be aligned with customer perception. Forgetting that can lead to a costly mistake that can undermine all the resources you have put forth. Think about that before you contact a branding agency in Dubai (or wherever you are based).
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