It is hard enough building a brand, but what do you do when you have a well-known brand – but it is known for the wrong things? Re-branding is time consuming and expensive.
In the case of Domino’s – they took a risky approach to their re-branding. They decided to be extremely honest – “our product WAS not up to par, but NOW it is.” This campaign launched in 2010, starting out as a well received campaign. Domino’s kept trying to give its audience a look at the freshness of its ingredients.
When you have a brand that has been around for so long, it is hard to change peoples’ perception of it.
Another example of a very long re-brand effort was Land Rover and its Range Rover line. The company was called Land Rover, but it entered the U.S. with its Range Rover line. The Range Rover name stuck so many people in America always thought of the company as Range Rover. It look a long time for Land Rover to re-brand itself.
Patience is important in a re-branding effort. Don’t try to rush it.
You aren’t going to change perceptions overnight in a re-brand effort. First you will face critics who question the authenticity of the re-brand. So step one is to sustain the re-brand beyond the initial round of doubters. These doubters are going to challenge whether your new statements are truly a change, or just marketing hype. So this effort needs to look genuine, and not conjured up by marketers.
Domino’s continued to press it’s message of committing to becoming better by supporting fresh ingredients. They didn’t just say they were improving, they showed how and why they were better.
Depending on what element you are changing, you need to be prepared for a long process. Re-branding is part of changing perceptions. And you want to do this delicately. If you are in multiple locations or countries – the effort requires much more planning and coordination. For example, Domino’s has 10,000 locations in about 70 countries. Rolling out programs, training employees, and managing the message in different languages and cultures can be quite challenging.
Once you are ready for the long-haul, keep the objective in mind. Are you trying to revitalize your brand for a new audience (Lacoste, Puma), trying to re-engage your existing customers (Domino’s, Land Rover), etc.
The complexity in re-branding is that it is like starting from scratch – but you are essentially competing against your own brand. At times, you may have to make difficult decisions that change the way things were done, or how you communicated your brand. This is definitely not a short-term project, but more of an on-going campaign. It definitely is like re-inventing yourself.