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by Phil Birss
6 min read
How a rebrand can save your digital marketing efforts just like Earth’s mightiest heroes
Author: Phil Birss
Posted in Brand Strategy on 1st August 2018 12:00 am
I recently attended the MCM Manchester Comic Con! Thousands of comic book fans and lovers of all things fantastical mixed together in a cauldron of cosplay. There was iconic characters everywhere, from Deadpool to Darth Vader, along with stars of Hollywood blockbusters and animators in attendance. The whole enthralling experience got me thinking about superheroes, obviously!
Superheroes are some of the biggest brands around, from Captain America’s shield to Superman’s crest on his chest, their symbols are truly a global phenomenon and recognised everywhere.
But what if some of these superheroes were in desperate need of a rebranding? (Looking at you Matter-Eater Lad! Yep he’s actually a superhero…) How can this be achieved in the modern digital marketing age? And how can a rebrand save your digital marketing efforts?
What would Batman be without the bat-symbol? The X-men without their ‘X’? The Hulk without his…err… big… green fist…?
Anyway, the point is a brand is immensely important, and will make the difference between success and failure when it comes to digital marketing. A powerful and recognisable brand is needed to really connect to an audience, it represents what you’re all about.
It reflects your values, illustrates the personality of your product or service, denotes your attitude, and is a perfect projection of what you wish to achieve. It takes research and planning to come up with the best brand, but even when there’s a strong one in place, some will still opt for a change of identity through smart and effective rebranding.
Look at how the essential superhero costume has evolved in order to modernise the heroic characters. Take the Batsuit, gone is the spandex looking bodysuit with the underwear on the outside. Did the Dark Knight used to get dressed in the dark? Thankfully the weird Joel Schumacher bat-nipples also disappeared. (I mean, what was that?)
These days the upgraded costume generally puts emphasis on the practical body armour that showcases muscle definition and effectiveness in combat. This can be said for many modernised superheroes – tight spandex is out, replaced with a more textural, aesthetically pleasing and practical feel that translates better into the real world.
This is similar to rebranding, as this involves taking your company’s trademark image, or brand identity, and restructuring it. The aim is to remodel and recreate your brand, to keep it relevant, help develop your business strategies, and enrich the experiences people have with it.
Sometimes change is needed and it can be a truly wonderful thing, just like the old adage “out with the old, in with the new.”
Occasionally companies need to rebrand in order to bounce back after things have gone wrong. Like when S.H.I.E.L.D. discovered that they had been infiltrated by HYDRA and the whole agency was forced to reform from the ground up, partly to protect its image and values.
Granted most digital marketing companies won’t suddenly discover a rogue quasi-Nazi science group hiding out in the office, (I’ve always thought Steve from IT was a bit dodgy though…) but constant changes in modern culture and shifts in trends will often force many companies to head in different directions.
An effective rebranding takes tactical research and well thought out planning to pull off, so before you go charging in like the Hulk, take these three rebrand focus points into consideration
To begin rebuilding your brand, you’ll need to re-think what your brand’s message is all about, so that you can clearly identify its voice and the personality.
Tony Stark was very clear when he rebranded from being a military weapons manufacturer…
Research how your brand translates and connects to your target audience or customers. Figure out what it is that you can do to benefit them, and show them through your brand’s voice. Write down keywords to help compare yourself to who you were before, this will help you realise further changes you need to make.
Once you’re crystal clear about who you are and who your audience is, you’ll see how you can make your product and services distinct to them. When rebranding, form a plan to break down each product or service you provide using snappy content and relevant branded imagery.
Accurately conveying what you do to any existing and potential customers will make them feel completely comfortable and build trust. Tailoring designs to suit the tastes of your target audience, and using relatable content is a must to successfully rebuild a strong brand identity. Plus you’ll start attracting the right kind of customers for your business.
Your brand should never be confusing for your audience…
People do judge a book by its cover, so everything your audience will see must to be taken into consideration.
Superman is a supreme example of effectively utilising a combination of elements to create a strong and clear brand personality. The man of steel is colour coordinated with bold red, yellow and blue primary colours that give off a patriotic feel. His iconic kryptonian logo is emblazoned on his chest, symbolising hope, while also resembling the letter “S” reminding everyone of his name – as if you’d forget!
The names, colours and iconic logos you use are of course the building blocks for any successful digital marketing brand. Every superhero uses a recognisable symbol and a name that encapsulates their individual tone, background and style, but each manages to stand out from the rest. Being meticulous about your colour palette, images, and overall aesthetic will help you avoid a rebrand failure.
A true superhero never loses sight of their objectives, and whether a rebrand is needed or not, it’s important that you remember what you want from your brand and what it means to you.
Originality and great aesthetics are all well and good, but it will be your brand’s consistency and authenticity that matters the most to the people you want to attract. Never forget your mission and business goals, and use them to craft the brand blueprint that’s right for you.
Building a better brand takes passion and dedication, but when it comes to digital marketing, going it alone can sometimes give you tunnel vision and stop you from seeing the bigger picture.
Much like the Avengers themselves, sometimes it’s best to team up with others to better support yourself. When it comes to building a new brand, using trusted experts who have solid branding experience can be invaluable.
Teaming with digital marketing experts can eliminate all the stress and wasted energy that can occur when going through the process of rebranding. So, make full use of the help that’s available to save the future of your business.
Are you ready to improve your brand and digital marketing efforts? Get in touch.
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