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Branding

Brand Development: When Should You Think About Re-branding?


The Value of a Brand

There’s no denying the value of a brand. Brands denote messages of quality, loyalty, integrity and credibility. Successful branding is the reason companies sell for millions or billions of dollars more than their physical assets are worth. When Kraft purchased Cadbury for $19.5 billion it wasn’t for their chocolate recipes. It was because their brand was their largest asset. “We have great respect for Cadbury’s brands, heritage and people. We believe they will thrive as part of Kraft Foods,” said Kraft’s CEO Irene Rosenfield.

That kind of brand value doesn’t happen overnight.

At the same time, however, many successful companies’ brands have evolved over time. So how do you know when it’s time for an organizational re-brand?

What’s Involved in Re-branding?

New brand development is a total marketing strategy aimed at getting consumers to take notice or look at you differently. It involves all your branding assets, including logos, trademarks, advertising campaigns, websites, e-newsletters, signage and various other forms of marketing unique to your business. Re-branding is a total change on all fronts.

When Should You Consider a Change?

Your brand is one of your most valuable assets and changing it shouldn’t be taken lightly. However, there are times when marketing teams should seriously look at re-branding. Here are three signs you might be in need of a new brand.

Customers are losing interest. Are your customers less interested in your products than they were five years ago? Think carefully if the culprit might be your general image or the message your brand communicates. Research what your competitors are doing and figure out what differentiates you from them. That difference is what your brand development needs to communicate.

Your sales are dropping. When products aren’t selling, it’s a good sign that your brand is not working. Having your marketing and branding strategy evaluated by a third party is often a good idea. “New” eyes are in a better position to determine what “traditions” should stay and what needs to evolve.

Your brand is just out-of-date. Part of an effective branding strategy is being able to look ahead. Accurately predicting changes in the market and sales environment are imperative to having a lasting brand. If you did not do this when your original brand was created, it might be time for a change. For example, consider Mountain Dew, whose products originally targeted a completely different age group or ethnicity. Years later the company has expanded into the action sports vertical, as the original energy drink, through a targeted brand development effort that took years. However, they are now competing with many other energy drinks in the category, and losing ground. One possible explanation is that their brand is watered down now, and maybe not extreme enough for the category. Re-branding the soft drink may be their only option to maintain, or grow, their market share.

Old Spice – A Compelling Example.

Numerous high-profile companies have successfully gone through a re-branding process. For example, Old Spice was once a top-selling aftershave. As the years went on, however, their customers’ interest shifted to new, more trendy alternatives. They had a reputation for being your grandfather’s aftershave. As a result, sales dropped. The reality was that their brand was out-dated. They had not evolved to attract a younger audience, or listened to their real customer who were women (buying for their man). They knew it was time for a branding transformation. They hired NFL Player Isaiah Mustafa for an ad that ran just after the 2010 Super Bowl, but yet was voted as a top 10 best Super Bowl ad (which is usually reserved for those spots during the game). You probably remember him asking, “Hello Ladies, Look at your man, now back at me.” That one ad was viewed by millions during the Super Bowl, then over 46 million times on YouTube. Their marketing team and agency, successfully used bloggers and celebrities via social media to spread the message even further and attract a younger audience. What was the result? Old Spice reported a sales increase of over 55% for the next 3 months, and over 100 percent on the year.

Whether you decide re-branding is the right course or not, organizing, protecting and consistently sharing these important assets should be part of your strategy. Brandfolder focuses on brand asset management that treats these files as valuable resources – visually organizing, beautifully presenting and securely sharing them. Contact us to learn more about how our products can improve the usefulness of your branding assets, or visit Brandfolder.com and get started today.


Paul Arterburn is a Co-founder and the Head of Product at Brandfolder, a Techstars Boulder 2013 company. In this capacity, Paul is responsible for overall product vision and execution. This includes managing the development and design processes, constructing and executing the product roadmap, and deploying code daily. Paul is nearing the magic 10,000 hour mark of coding through the dedication of learning 15 different coding languages over the past 15 years. Daring and scrappy, Paul is ready to leave the Web better than he found it: this is what drove him to found Brandfolder. Me in 3: • Movies people can’t believe I don’t like: Star Trek and Star Wars. • My secret talent: As a songwriter my first songs at age 16 were about all girls, and my latest about just one - my fiancé. • My first invention: A wrestling move dubbed 'The Bob Dole' still used across the state of Nebraska today.

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