The dos and don'ts of brand repositioning
Deploying a brand repositioning strategy can help your business become more relevant and sustainable. Here are the dos and don’ts of making a brand change.
The business world is in constant flux as consumer preferences change, new ways of marketing evolve, and products and services are researched and bought in ways that were never envisaged a generation ago. And then there's artificial intelligence or AI, which is still in its infancy but has the potential to change everything again – not least in the way marketers can deliver personalised experiences to both existing customers and new ones.
With change comes opportunity, meaning this could be a great time to overhaul and optimise the way you do business, with an image makeover and more. If that's your plan, here are some of the biggest dos and don'ts for successful brand repositioning.
It's not just about updating your brand identity. It's about reviewing all aspects of your business – including potential product repositioning – and how you present yourself to your target audience.
Just like starting a business from scratch, brand repositioning takes thorough research, patience and a marketing strategy. There's likely to be a lot riding on this transformation, so take the time to do a thorough audit of your current business and ask yourself the hard questions:
Once you have a thorough understanding of the inner workings of your business, you're likely better placed to improve it.
Updating your logo or brand colours could absolutely help give your brand a fresh look – and therefore attract new customers – but it shouldn't be the beginning and end of a brand reposition.
Your visual rebrand should be part of a holistic business transformation that looks at what your customers need, how you interact with them, how you manage your staff and cash flow, and how you market your brand effectively.
A common reason for businesses to consider brand repositioning is because they're struggling to gain traction with younger demographics. To tackle this challenge, it can be helpful to take stock of how other businesses approach the market to see what works for them and how you could mimic their approach in your business.
How could your existing brand be strengthened? Do you need to create a stronger web presence? Could you drive up sales by being more engaging and shareable on new and emerging social channels? Should you consider leveraging emerging technologies, including AI?
There are two main types of brand repositioning. Intangible repositioning where you maintain an existing product or service but target a different market. And tangible repositioning where you change both the product or service and the target audience you're marketing too, which can be considered risky. Or you could simply market the same product to an existing market, but review all the recognisable components of how you do it.
You've succeeded in business up to this point for a reason, and while you might need a little help to get a greater market share, don't risk losing your loyal customer base by spreading yourself too thin.
Instead of simply offering more, consider focusing on your most popular offerings. Shedding what's not currently working could help you improve your hero products and services and have more time – and resources – to expand them to a wider target market.
Watching your competitors soar could have been the reason you're now considering a brand reposition. Take a look at how they're succeeding where you aren't. What tactics are they using to bring in customers? What technology solutions or cost-cutting strategies are they using to reduce their overheads? You can also look at what they’re doing wrong, which can help you identify and avoid some of the common pitfalls of doing business yourself.
Your brand reposition might take anywhere from days to weeks to months – or even years. For you, the changes might have been under way for a long time, but your prospects have not been on that journey with you, so it might take them longer to catch on.
You can help by educating them on the changes that you've made. So, once you've embarked on this voyage, it's important to stay the course and be committed and invested in the change.
Whether you're changing your company's identity, products, services, target audience or value proposition, part of the aim of your marketing will be to change customer perception about your business to reflect its new brand positioning. Therefore, a thorough review of both messages and mediums should be carried out as part of your positioning strategy.
To sum up:
Staying relevant in business is both challenging and demanding, but the whole repositioning exercise can be well worth setting time aside to plan carefully. That time will be well spent thinking about your offering and helping make a positive change by repositioning your brand.
This information does not take into account your personal circumstances and is general. It is an overview only and should not be considered a comprehensive statement on any matter or relied upon. Consider obtaining personalised advice from a professional financial adviser and your accountant before making any financial decisions in relation to the matters discussed in this article, including when considering tax and finance options for your business. Westpac does not endorse any of the external providers referred to in this article.