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How to make your rebrand work for you

This short guide provides an introduction to rebranding for voluntary organisations. It covers who to involve, how to make the most of your resources, and what to consider when communicating your new identify.

1

Be open and transparent about your reasons for rebranding

You need to be clear about why you are considering a re-brand and what the benefits will be for the organisation. Is your current identity outdated and no longer representative of who you are? Or is it primarily about boosting fundraising? Show how the end result will impact positively on your beneficiaries and make sure this is communicated to staff and trustees.

2

Be strategic and clear about your objectives

It is vital that any new brand is based on strategic principles and the reality of your organisation’s current situation and goals. Set out your objectives clearly, then identify and prioritise your target audiences, their view of you and what you want to communicate to them. Once the process is underway, test your brand with these groups to make sure it meets your objectives.

3

Consider your resources

In lean times it is even more important to use resources wisely. Look at the skills and talent you have among your staff, service users and trustees, and how these could be used. Think about your budget and identify where funds can be spent most effectively. Consider approaching external specialists for support, but ensure you are clear on requirements and expectations.

4

Choose external support wisely

If you decide to get an agency on board, think carefully about where you most need the support and how they can add most value. Agencies can help you with strategic work, digital, branding, communications and media relations so look at your own capacity, skills and creativity, to see where you may need to plug the gaps.

When you have decided on the support you need, ask around and get recommendations from other people in the sector. It’s always a good idea to meet agencies in person to get a feel for their work and the people you’ll be working with, and to find out if they really understand your vision.

5

Plan activity and timeframes

Work with staff and agencies to establish manageable time-frames and agree a detailed project plan for the rebrand. Be strategic and realistic, but also flexible. Having a clear plan in place means you will be better placed to respond to any delays or unexpected changes.

6

Involve and engage service users, trustees and staff

Getting buy in from the people you support, as well as staff and trustees, is key to the success of a new brand. Involve them in the process from the beginning through focus groups and online surveys. However, be clear what you are asking for feedback on, and manage expectations; individual preferences can’t be reflected in the design and a brand cannot be designed ‘by committee’.

7

Plan ahead for implementation

This stage can often be overlooked during the rebranding process but it is one of the most important to get right.

Do an audit of materials featuring your current brand so these can be updated or replaced in time for the switch over.

Are there any questions or issues that may come up during roll out of the new brand? If so, scope these out ahead of time and plan your response.

8

Launch and communicate the new identity

A rebrand is rarely news in itself so plan how to launch your new brand and generate support. Ask yourself what sort of launch will work for your organisation and best reflect your ethos. Do you want a ‘soft’ launch to allow stakeholders to get used to the new identity over time, or the impact of a big launch event and media campaign?

Ensure staff members are familiar with and excited about the new identity: they are your most important brand ambassadors.

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Page last edited Feb 12, 2019 History

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