If a brand seems old-fashioned, unaccommodating or useless to its target group of customers, what can its owner do?
Among immediate solutions is brand refresh to build awareness, evoke new feelings on the brand, attract consumers and make them feel excited with the brand again.
But it is not easy to make a brand refresh decision. Prior to that, there must be careful consideration on what should change. After a careful plan is concluded, a brand refresh process will take times before its accomplishment. Those who want brand refresh should first answer these 3 important questions.
- Is a brand not trendy for consumers?
- Is a brand still in a superior position?
- Can a new strategic business plan be applied to an old brand?
If the answers are yes, there must be brand refresh.
Brand Refresh is a way of rebranding. It changes a brand’s image, logo, slogan and color but maintains the brand’s identity. In other words, it is a makeover to make a brand look modern and attractive. To guarantee the success of brand refresh, a brand should first have clear targets in these 3 areas.
1. The main target group
Most brands adhere to old groups of customers. In fact, the preferences and needs of customers and trends always change and do faster in the digital era. For example, baby boomers used to be at working age and were the main buyers of brands. Today they are at retirement age and their preferences and needs naturally change. The products that they once chose may not serve their needs anymore. Meanwhile, Gen Z people who were children in the past have grown up and will enter their working age. They become the new group of customers whom brands must capture because they will be the main group of buyers in markets.
Apart from the age factor, the changing contexts of markets also change the target groups of customers. For example, in the past consumers chose products by their functions. Nowadays the demand may alter. Consumers may buy the products that deliver emotional benefits such as the products that make users feel that they are the valuable persons who help save the world or improve society. Therefore, a brand owner should consider if a brand should change its main target group of customers. For example, a brand that used to target the masses may have to look for other groups of customers with greater potential for its future growth. It may have to increasingly penetrate the premium market to reach people with high purchasing power.
2. The main competitor
Before making a brand different from others, learning about the success of the brand’s main competitor or analyzing the competitor, the owner of the brand must answer these 5 questions.
– Who is the competitor?
– What are the products and services of the competitor?
– What is the market share of the competitor?
– What are the past and present strategies of the competitor?
– What are the strengths and weaknesses of the competitor?
When there are answers for all the questions, the concerned brand owner can do analyses from 2 perspectives.
- Customers’ perspectives
It is to put yourself in customers’ shoes. Ask yourself why customers buy your products and services or those of your competitor, what customers expect from bought products and what makes you different from competitors. Then gradually improve the products and services of your brand to serve the needs of your target group of customers.
- Competitors’ perspectives
You can imagine you are in the companies of your competitors so that you will understand their brand identities and brand positions. The understanding can cover their brands’ storytelling, assets, success and failure from the period of their establishment to the present. By this means, you can find out what your brand lacks. You should study the brands’ tones of voices, personalities, value for their customers and slogans which clearly show brand positioning as well as their logos, colors and fonts which are the end results of your competitors’ plans and create the feelings that your competitors expect.
3. Brand Positioning
Brand positioning is aimed at making consumers remember a brand on sight and think of it when they want to buy a product or service. Brand positioning depends on the 3 important questions.
- What do customers want? A brand owner must figure out the answer after identifying a target group of customers. The owner must have in-depth knowledge about customers including their interest, behaviors and the places of their frequent visits. This will tell what customers expect from the products and services they buy.
- What can a brand offer to customers? When the owner of a brand is aware of customers’ needs, the next step is to link what customers need or the problems that customers want to solve with what the brand has to find out how the brand can help customers.
- Is your brand different? You must know what makes your brand special and how the special qualification can differentiate your brand from competitors in your market to encourage customers to choose your brand. In other words, a brand’s uniqueness lies in the value that the brand can offer to customers. For example, eateries present new experiences for customers as their selling points instead of telling customers only that they sell foods.
Here are some interesting examples of brand refresh
In 2019, Lazada refreshed its brand with a new logo of a multicolor heart shape in place of letters in an orange circle. The new logo represents liveliness and joy which go along with the brand’s position that changed to “Shoppertainment” meaning the combination of shopping and fun for customers’ shopping experiences.
It has changed its logo for four times since its foundation. The latest logo was introduced in 2011 which marked its 40th anniversary. The words “Starbucks Coffee” were removed not only to create new feelings on the brand but also to signal its plan to reach more target groups of customers and sell other products and services apart from coffee.
It’s a matter of fact that brand refresh not only makes brands modern and attractive to more customers but also shows that brands remain trendy in their business and have the products and services that perfectly and readily meet the needs of customers. Besides, new images make brands appear more flexible when they want to communicate with different groups of customers through various channels including online and offline ones. The brands that have numerous forms of communications for different groups of customers can better develop relations with customers and reach them and customers will always have such brands in their mind.