It’s safe to say that we are nearing the thick of re-brand and brand refresh season in the branding community, friends! The fall and winter months often give way to the much-needed flexibility in clients’ schedules that allow them to strategize for the year ahead, and one of the first things to consider is whether your brand needs some thoughtful visual updates. If you’ve done your research, decided that the best next step to take your business to new heights is a thoughtful re-brand, then let me spill my best advice for how to best prepare for this type of project. In the past, I’ve shared just how to determine whether a re-brand was right for you, but today I’m breaking down exactly how to walk into this new season for your visual identity and brand strategy so you can truly prepare for success! Plus, I’m sharing a totally free checklist to download at the end of this post to help you stay on track with your re-brand and all the to-do’s that go hand-in-hand.
Make Note of What’s Working
Before you start dreaming about color palettes or bookmarking your favorite calligrapher’s website, it’s important to be analytical about what’s working for your brand and what’s not. Now is not the time to mince words or go easy on yourself. Feel free to even call in some backup in the form of industry friends or trusted colleagues.
Ask yourself what aspects of your visual brand, brand strategy, and messaging are working. After identifying those individual responses, it’s time to go through again and highlight what’s not working with your visuals, strategy, and messaging. Some questions to help you get started are:
What are your visuals saying about your experience or the kind of finished products clients can expect?
What type of clients is your messaging bringing in?
Where is your brand strategy taking you? And is it that in-line with your goals for your business?
Create Goals for your Re-brand
Walking through a full re-brand is a process that should be entered into thoughtfully, friend. Not only are you sinking in thousands of dollars into the process, but you’re also changing things dramatically for your audience. With that in mind, it’s important to be sure that the choices you and your designer make as you walk through the re-branding process will ultimately align with the longterm vision you have for your brand. In order to best make that happen, write down the goals that you have for this new season for your brand!
What will this refreshed (or totally overhauled) brand do for you?
How will this new brand elevate your business?
What kind of clientele will this brand empower you to connect with?
Once you’ve identified your goals, share them with your designer so she can make thoughtful decisions that will connect you with the right audience, set you up for longterm success, and will represent the level of experience you invite your clients into.
Identify your Dream Deliverables
As you get closer to diving into the process with the designer of your dreams, take a few minutes to think about the deliverables that will make the most of this new set of visuals for you. Stationery, business cards, branded welcome guides, new websites, and even packaging details are all forms of collateral that can elevate your overall client experience as final deliverables. Now is the time to dream big about your must-haves so you can ensure you’re launching a totally new set of visuals with the items that will truly make your heart sing!
Hire your Dream Designer
And if you’re going to take the time to identify your dream deliverables, why not partner with your dream designer to bring them to life? There is a specific process to re-branding, or refreshing an existing brand, and this is one of those times in your business where you want to invest your resources and energy into working with a true professional. But I totally understand that the re-branding process is just that — an investment. So do your homework, reach out to designers who you think will be a great fit, and schedule a quick call with them to talk through your goals, learn more about their process, and hear about their success stories to find the designer who will be the best fit for you.
Do Your Homework
Congrats! You’ve hired your dream designer, you’re well on your way to diving into your re-brand, and now is the time to invest in the pre-branding homework your pro sends your way. As part of your re-brand, a professional designer should send some worksheets, guides, or questionnaires to you to gather all the info they need to serve you well throughout your time together. Personally, I guide my clients through my signature brand development process that hones the vision, values, and mission behind their brand. On top of that, we clarify their ideal client, brand voice, and messaging so we can design a visual identity that speaks clearly to those my clients want to reach.
But I fully understand that my pre-branding homework takes time. But when my clients invest their time and energy into truly doing the work, it pays off in spades! This year alone, I’ve had clients truly invest in the brand development process and, after their brand launch, they’ve booked $50k in new client projects within one week, and one sweet client even booked an ideal client within 24 hours. When you invest in the process, I promise you that you will see lasting results, boss lady.
Schedule Your Time Wisely
Finally, be sure to carve out the time in your schedule to devote to your re-brand. This is a process that deserves your best, so schedule intentional time each week to work on homework for your designer, answer her emails, approve proofs, or chat strategy with her. Personally, I send my clients a detailed timeline at the beginning of our project that outlines dates for every part of the process. This not only helps my clients know when they will be hearing from me, but it also lets them know what dates they should pencil into their calendars so we can make the most of our time together.
I know there are a plethora of details that go into making your re-brand truly successful. But this is the time to pop the bubbly and celebrate this new season for your business! To help keep you on track, I’m including a free checklist below with my best steps for navigating your re-brand and covering all your bases thoughtfully.
Is 2018 the year you’ll unveil a heartfelt new brand and inspire authentic connection with your ideal clients, friend? If so, I’d love to partner together to craft an elevated identity that reflects the heart of your life’s work! I’m currently accepting two more branding clients for 2018 at my current prices, and this offer won’t last long before rates increase. If you’re ready to chat more about working together, shoot me an email and we’ll schedule a free consult to explore your re-branding goals!