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3 Signs It’s a Good Time to Rethink Your Brand

It’s inevitable that things evolve. And your brand should, too.

While it may have been perfect for you when it was first developed, you might find yourself veering away from your original brand identity as your company changes — and that’s OK! But when that happens, you’ll need to makes changes to your brand so it’s always aligned with the current state of the company.

Sometimes, there are obvious signs it’s time to rebrand. And other times, it may not be so clear. Here, we’re sharing three telltale signs that it’s time to start thinking about rebranding efforts.

1. When you pursue a different target demographic.

Your target audience is (well, should be) at the core of everything you do. You create a brand that will resonate with and appeal to your audience so that you can relate to them. Not all brands will span this widely, but you can imagine how a brand geared toward millennial women would be wildly different than a brand meant for Baby Boomer men. Whether you’re making changes to a product, adding a new product, or simply tapping into a different audience group who may be interested, your brand will need to stay relevant to all potential demographics.

How might a brand expand to reach a diverse audience? Let’s look at Patagonia as an example. Incredibly strong brand, yes. But the company also has an incredibly varied target market — men, women, children, people of all ages, outdoorsy folks and more. So how do they manage to engage everyone? The company is united on its brand principles of quality products and environmentally conscious and sustainable manufacturing processes. With those two common threads, Patagonia is able to market to its differing target audiences and maintain a robust brand at its core.

2. When a competitor becomes more threatening.

A lot of times, rebranding comes from internal changes or restructuring. However, there are external pressures, too. It’s almost like playing defense. Let’s say an established competitor kicks up their momentum or a new competitor is quickly gaining attention. Rebranding can serve as a way to protect your business, giving you a chance to really differentiate yourself from others in the market.

Think about Uber and Lyft. For years, Uber was dominating the market and was hands down the most widely known. Then Lyft entered the game and gained traction quickly. This likely urged Uber to start formulating a plan, because last year around this time, they went through a rebrand.

3. When you outgrow your mission, culture, values, etc.

For this specific occurrence, all pressure to rebrand comes internally. And you’ll know when it’s time. As companies grow, they’re dealt higher expectations. Sometimes the strategy set forth from the beginning needs to be reevaluated a few years later. Whatever the circumstances, any significant company change can spark the need for a refreshed or completely rebuilt brand.

Here at GO2 Advertising, we’re currently putting the finishing touches on an exciting brand refresh. What prompted us to revisit our branding? A recent shift in our culture.

As an agency, we’ve been developing and executing strategic internal initiatives to enhance our culture. At the core of these efforts is our focus on employee-ownership — we all apply an ownership mentality to everything we do at GO2, and we wanted this positive shift in our culture to be reflected in our brand voice and visual identity.

We’re eager to begin sharing our refreshed brand elements this year, and we’re confident in what our brand will say about who we are as an agency.

Keep an eye out for a new GO2 website as we finalize our brand refresh!

Now it’s your turn — how do you evaluate when it’s time for a brand overhaul? Tell us about some of your branding challenges and triumphs in the comments below.

Employee-Owner Spotlight: Pete Rubin

As an employee-owned agency, what moves one of us moves us all. So each month, we’re turning the spotlight on one of our many awesome owners to find out more about the unique personalities that shape GO2.

This month, we’ll get to know one of the people who started it all — co-founder, managing partner and intrepid adventurer Pete Rubin.

What are you most passionate about at work?

This one is a piece of cake. The people, the culture and the finances — in that order.

Seeing our employees develop their careers and helping them succeed is the reason I come to work every day. We have a talented, passionate team and I see the potential and believe in every one of them. The second priority for me is creating a positive environment that allows that success to happen. This has to be a place where people feel valued, supported and inspired to do great work. Last are the finances. From the beginning, it has never been our goal to maximize profit at all cost. We look for a reasonable return on our investment to keep us going and to continue growing. Money isn’t my primary passion, but I have to make sure our company is financially healthy, or those other goals wouldn’t be possible.

What are you most passionate about outside of work?

I love to travel. Experiencing culture, people and perspectives from around the world is always an amazing adventure. I especially love to get out and experience nature. Whether it’s skiing, diving or going on a safari, it’s rewarding to be a part of environments that are both beautiful and challenging. I wouldn’t call myself an adrenaline junkie, I just like to keep moving and to never be bored.

Spending time with family and close friends is also very important to me. Not that I ever sit still, but I love to take them to a game, a show or to just hang out.

One more thing I’d say is a passion of mine is animal conservation. I believe we have an obligation to preserve the natural world and the incredible creatures that inhabit it.

What are some favorites you’d like to share?

Movies: Miracle, the movie about the U.S. hockey team that won the gold medal in the 1980 Winter Olympics.

Also action movies like Rocky, Rambo and anything with Clint Eastwood.

TV: House of Cards, any good political or police dramas.

Musician: Eric Clapton. I think I’ve seen him perform live in every decade since the ‘70s!

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

My mother always tells me that when I was little, I wanted to grow up to be a tractor. Also, as a Jewish kid growing up in New York, I was obligated to want to be a doctor and probably a lawyer. When I went off to college, I had no idea what I wanted to be; I just wanted to get a degree in anything where you didn’t have to learn a language. I think I learned more Swahili while preparing for a trip to Africa than I did Spanish in college.

What is the weirdest food you’ve ever eaten?

I ate guinea pig in Peru; it’s actually not uncommon there. I had something called black chicken in China that was very strange. Black feathers, black skin, black meat, even black bones. I’ve eaten lionfish, rattlesnake and even some chocolate-covered grasshopper — that one was right here at the Cleveland Metroparks.

What would you like to be famous for?

You know, I’ve actually never thought about this. I think I’d like to be famous for animal conservation efforts. Maybe doing work to preserve gorillas and other major primates.

What is something people might be surprised to know about you?

I think people would be surprised to know I love Star Trek. I am a fan of the Original Series mostly, but I also love everything that came after, except Deep Space 9. Did you know Spock’s “live long and prosper” hand gesture is a symbol from ancient Jewish history? It was something Leonard Nimoy, who was a Jew, remembered from an Orthodox Jewish synagogue service he attended as a child.