A brand is a living thing that changes over time. For a business or a personal brand, this is an important fact to consider when you’re thinking about a rebrand or contemplating how to approach a brand new year. A new year is a fresh slate and here are three things to consider in order to take full advantage of the fresh start to achieve the changes you seek.
New Year, New You. New Year, New Look.
Everywhere you go this month you’ll see brands, businesses and individuals calling out to a “new year and new you” that can be applied to every area of your life. January 1 is like the coconut oil catch-all, it’s one way for businesses, brands and individuals to flip the page and flip the script. By doing that, many will throw out (and sometimes discredit) everything they’ve done in the past and that is a huge mistake. Why? Because the Internet has a long memory and all of the work you’ve done in the past is worthy of being reshaped and transformed to fit your new goals.
How do you do it? Well, it can seem daunting but I assure you, it is quite simple. Here are three things to consider before you re-brand in 2019.
What IS Your Brand
Your brand is who you are, what you stand for. The font type you use for your graphics and the colors you use in your logo. It’s the essence of everything you wish to achieve and everything you’ve already accomplished summed up in one neat little PowerPoint Deck.
Blergh, as one of my favorite characters Liz Lemon would say.
Sure, a brand IS all of those things but what does that actually mean in plain, human English?
It starts with a deep understanding of your goals and how you can achieve them REALISTICALLY with the budget and resources (think time, money) you have access to,
Once you’ve defined what your brand is, it is easier to set these goals because you now have the power to know what your brand is capable of.
Who Is Your Audience
The party don’t start till… your audience arrives. Read that again. Until you have an audience, you don’t really have a business or brand. If no one is willing to buy from you, how can you sell any products? Understanding WHO your audience is can be challenging but it doesn’t HAVE to be.
My fool-proof three-step practice to defining your audience is both fun and engaging. It goes a little something like this:
- Who are they? — think about the individual you’d like to work with. Are they a business owner? Are they a side hustler? Are they a CEO of a Fortune 500 company determining if your company is the right fit for their needs? Once you’ve built a profile of them as a professional, it’s time to build a profile of them as a person.
- Think about how they use social media and how they get their news. They might not use social media at all but they might be very active via text. Or they might ONLY be active on LinkedIn.
- Think about who THEY have access to. One quick way to grow your audience is to leverage the audience of YOUR audience — basically, get the people who like you to tell other people about you — and that’s something all brands need to do more of in 2019.
Past Successes = Future Gains
I spent much of last year focused on a rebrand. For me, it meant starting some elements of my brand from scratch and getting really clear on what that rebrand would mean for my business and myself.
All of my rebranded elements use my past successes as a foundation for why I do what I do.
So if you’re considering cleaning out a website or blog, do it with care. Think about new ways to reach your target audience and consider creative solutions that leverage past successes in order to begin again, without starting at the bottom of the hill. Sure, you’re going to be in a valley but you’re not completely at the bottom because you have worked hard and your past work DOES count when it comes to building your brand to new heights.
#SocialSurveyorSays: The Final Word
My new blog is called Social Surveyor because I believe we’re living in a time where we’re so connected and yet completely disconnected. Being social doesn’t mean living online — it means getting creative about how, why and where we engage. All of my content in 2019 will feature one final section on what I believe the biggest takeaway for YOU is in any piece of content.
So #socialsurveyorsays — if you’re going to rebrand, do it with caution, consider your audience and leverage past success. There are many ways to refine and retarget without throwing out everything you’ve done in the past. Honor your foundation, tout your success and look for new opportunities to connect the dots.
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