The branding process is an important part of the communication strategy of any brand. Through this process a team of creatives set out the guidelines to identify a brand by its visual components and voice tone.
Almost all brands update their image throughout the years to stay relevant. When a branding solution hasn’t had the expected result, maybe it’s a good idea to make changes. This is what is known as rebranding.
When a brand is modified, the main objective is to change its positioning, either because the brand has changed or because the positioning they were pursuing has not been achieved.
To renew a brand, refresh its image and adapt to new tendencies is all about changing what doesn’t work or what actually works but could work better.
Rebranding is one of the most complicated decisions in a company, it’s expensive and sometimes uncertain, which is why it’s good to have funcional examples of past rebrandings.
Great rebranding stories
Possibly one of the best rebranding stories of our era belongs to Apple. In the early and mid90s, The company suffered from low sales, low consumer interest and intense competition that kept customers away from them.
The brand didn’t represent much, and certainly couldn’t stand out, until Steve Jobs took over the company in 1997 and began to change consumer expectations.
With a minimalist and modern image, a dozen of new innovative products and a bunch of marketing and advertising campaigns focused on ideas and experiences rather than on products or purchases, Apple became what it is known as today.
Mark Zuckerberg recently presented a new Facebook logo for corporate use. This innovative new emblem has an adaptive color palette for each of its multiple application, carrying over the same essence but shifting its values, with a custom typeface resembling Cre Gothic Bold with curved diagonals, harmonized letter proportions and open space between them.
Airbnb is a great example of how some startups don’t pay enough attention to branding when launching. It’s also an amazing example of how a quality rebranding can shift your brand to new possibilities.
In 2014, Airbnb debuted a new brand identity designed by designstudio with a new palette of colors, a typography and a new brand, called “bélo”.
The premise behind the change of the brand was to create a major sense of belonging, and this was done through the formation of a new “community symbol that can be expressed differently by each member of the community and in each list – it is not limited by language, culture or location.”
In June of 2019, Cinépolis presented a new dynamic logo that adapts to different circumstances, joint by a new minimalist approach to design, taking the risk to change some colors, make their brand lighter and creating a new style.
Not as great rebranding stories
The textile company Gap decided to renew its logo in 2010 to make it more modern. When they announced the change of image an avalanche of criticism came through social media.
Six days after the launch of their new logo, they decided to erase any trace of it, and continue with the old one.
It seems to be the new Sam’s Club logo went too far into minimalism and stole the essence that characterized it. The new identity consists of two lines with angles that are in opposite directions, as well as a new sans serif typeface totally in lowercase. They also lost the different shades of indigo and green they had, only an opaque blue and white were left behind.
Canal de las Estrellas
Mexico’s biggest TV network, Televisa renewed the image for one of its channels and reduced its name to Las Estrellas, with a visual identity that generated criticism through its use of colors similar to those of its direct competitor TV Azteca.
This change hasn’t been fully accepted by its audience, but they decided to go through with it and hope for the best.
Rebranding has its pros and cons. You will usually find opinions divided between people who like changes and others who don’t. The secret is to focus on understanding transmitting what the public really wants.