New year, new brand?

As we begin 2023, and everyone is making their new year resolutions, you might be considering whether it’s time to stand back and take a good look at your company’s brand.

Brands that were set up just a few years ago can start to look outdated. Time and customers just don’t stand still and neither should your brand. But where do you start? Firstly, it’s probably important to know the difference between a rebrand and a brand refresh as they are quite different.

Brand Refresh – the evolutionary approach

A brand refresh is a good way to ensure you are keeping up to date with the trends in the marketplace. It’s a great way of giving your current brand a fresh new look. You can modernise your brand but you don’t change your core identity and strategy. It gives your customers something to talk about. It lets them know that your business is in tune with the industry and the changes that are taking place.

If you are undertaking a refresh of your brand you might look at changing or tweaking your logo. You may need a new strapline that better suits your business. Your fonts might be outdated and you want to modernise them or you might need to set up a new colour palette that better identifies with your customers. Put simply a brand refresh stops you remaining stagnant in a changing marketplace.

Rebrand – the revolutionary approach

A rebrand is a whole different ball game. This is a BIG strategic change and a big piece of work. Here you are giving your business a complete repositioning. It is something to do when your current brand is no longer working for you. You may have had a negative PR situation or you might want to grow your business in different markets or maybe even internationally.

A rebrand is more time consuming and will cost you more than a brand refresh but don’t be put off, it can be extremely useful in certain circumstances. It is more than just changing your logo and your colour palette. It’s more about making changes to your company’s vision, messaging and culture.

Completing a successful brand refresh

For the purposes of this blog, we are talking about refreshing your brand. You’ve identified that your current brand is a little outdated, isn’t quite reflective of your marketplace and you want to make some subtle changes to better identify with your target customers.

Here’s a few tips to help you complete a successful brand refresh:

  • Start with a little research. This can also be called a brand audit. You need to be objective by looking at your brand and see whether it’s doing what you need it to do. Look at the strengths and weaknesses of your brand. Evaluate your website, social media and marketing material. Would a potential customer know what you are selling? How do you compare to the competition? You may even want to survey a few of your customers to get their views as their opinions can be invaluable.
  • Make a list. Sound like an easy task? It’s actually more difficult than you think. Depending on what elements of your brand you are refreshing, you will need to make a list of everything that is impacted. For example, if you are designing a new logo, then you will need to identify everywhere that logo appears. This may be on printed material, on your website, signage, clothing and merchandise – even the coffee mugs and pens in your office may have your logo on!
  • Consider the timing. It’s not the ideal thing to tackle a brand refresh during an extremely busy period but it can work really well if you are launching a new product or service.
  • Work with a professional. Branding is important and working with an expert allows you to get on with your core business. We cover this a little further down.
  • Once you’ve completed your brand refresh ensure consistency across all your material – digital and printed. Don’t forget your social media will also need updating as well as your website. Business cards, headed paper and brochures will also need to be included. Brand guidelines are particularly useful to ensure consistency as they include how to use the logo, photography styles and key messaging as well as your fonts and colour palette.

Working with an expert

You might be wondering why we are talking about refreshing your brand which involves a lot of design work. Did you know we do more than just printing? Of course, historically that’s where our expertise lies but we also have an in-house graphic design studio that has worked with local businesses and international companies over the years by refreshing their brand and through many rebrands.

Our creative team will sit down with you and help get to know your needs. They will work with you on your brand refresh to ensure you get the most out of your marketing budget but ultimately you’ll get the brand that you want. A brand that better reflects your business and the needs of your customers and the changing marketplace.

Just got a logo?

We have worked with a number of small businesses who only have a logo. Often in the rush of launching a new business or setting up their website, they haven’t got further than getting a logo designed. Your business may have grown and it’s now time to build on that logo by setting up your business’s visual identity. This will involve working with you on your fonts and colour palette, your digital and pantone colours, logo positioning and typeface weights.  We’ve got some tips here to help you understand what needs to be done.

Once you’ve completed your brand refresh, what next?

We offer a number of cost-effective solutions that are easier on your pocket. Our business stationery packs for example are competitively priced and include everything you need. We will work with you offering help and advice to cut costs but not quality wherever possible. Supporting you by choosing paper stock for your all your literature, folders and any packaging to ensure you achieve a consistent look and feel across everything.

And if you want to communicate your new refreshed brand to your customers, we can also work with you writing and designing your newsletters – whether you want to go down the hard copy route or a digital option. It’s also a great communication tool to add in to your marketing mix. We can also refresh the design of existing newsletters so they sit in line with your new visual identity.

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