For part four of the series, we’re talking relaunch.
Let’s suppose you’ve produced a compelling new business plan, and succeed in attracting a major new investor. So, you now have the money implement the plan. You start by reshaping your team and upgrading skills and experience in all key areas of the business. You also have a proper financial and commercial function as well as an HR team. You move to new offices.
This is the perfect time for a brand relaunch.
The starting point is a more sophisticated analysis of the different audiences you need to reach. Then you can develop your brand with an eagle-eyed focus on its over-riding purpose: to engage these people.
It’s time to fundamentally revisit the questions you settled earlier – what, precisely, are your business goals? Who do you need to engage with now to drive yet more sales or increase customer numbers? What do you stand for and what differentiates you? The answers to all these questions will likely have changed, at least to a certain degree, from earlier ages.
Your internal company culture will also have evolved, and you need to ensure your brand captures this change. A new mission, values and revised key messages are all part of an essential adjustment that builds towards an exit.
A new brand means it’s time to ramp up integrated communications. This means a bigger, but also more closely connected marketing and communications plan. With more money available, build a new website or overhaul your old one. Be ruthless with the language, design and content. Anything that smacks of the early phases of your business should go.
Now is the time to build truly multi-dimensional campaigns. If you want people to remember the new you, you’ve got to hit them from all angles and recast, retell and replay your ideas. Anything goes, as long as it’s relevant. Don’t make assumptions about what will get through to people. Technology changes the content we can produce and the channels available to us – make use of the latest communications tools, techniques and media.
No matter how big you go, you won’t change perceptions overnight – it requires persistence. Make sure your employees live and breathe your new brand. If you’ve incorporated the company culture and mission correctly, that shouldn’t be too hard, but you need to educate. If your people don’t understand the brand internally, they won’t be able to sell it externally. Make them your biggest brand advocates.