3 Things We’ve Learned While Rebranding
Your brand is everything. It’s what people know about your company. It’s how they feel when they think of you. Branding can seem so intangible, but it truly can make or break a business. For example, in 2009, Tropicana orange juice completely overhauled their packaging and replaced old logos and symbols. Even though the product was the same, the new brand could not connect with their consumers. In two months, Tropicana suffered around $30M in lost sales and quickly reverted to their old design. That’s the power of a brand.
And that’s why we felt like we needed to change our brand name. When I founded my company, I entered the world of startups with a data-driven mission to map the country’s roads and crashes. Open Data Nation Co. was suitable at the time. But like growing too big for your favorite tee-shirt, we knew it was time to change.
Five years later, my company has settled in and found a new niche with new opportunities. Our old name no longer suited the vibrancy and goals of what my team was trying to achieve.
If we were going to have a makeover, we needed to do it quickly and right. For those of you who are also considering how to revamp your name to match the vibe of your company, I thought to share three lessons I learned.
1) Know your audience
Always keep in mind who you are serving and why. When rebranding, you should take it as an opportunity to focus your efforts on your clients. If not, who then? Keep the goal of growth and reach in mind when finding the name and messaging that fits you best.
For example, if you are serving a public agency a name that includes “open data” might signify your progressive stance on transparency and accountability, but to insurance carriers it signals data privacy and storage concerns.
2) Critically evaluate your competitors
Understanding the competitions is always key. But with a rebrand, take this moment to find a niche amongst your competitors. A new name and face is a great chance to change with the times and fill a need no one else is filling.
Our competitors have funky, technical names that personify their technical expertise. We chose Ometry to be more relatable and approachable. This works for our customers who need to understand how to interpret data and use alternative measures in the underwriting process.
3) Listen to feedback
A life lesson that’s always applicable is: Listen to what people have to say when they tell you. So, be open to suggestions from industry peers and others. A great idea in your head might not be received the same way by your customers. Value real feedback as essential to the rebranding process.
So far, we have gotten great feedback from our clients. So what do you think?
For us, it was challenging and risky, but if you remember the core of your brand and strive to personify those values, as a new self with strong messaging, your business will emerge stronger.
Carey Anne Nadeau is the Founder and CEO of Ometry, a risk technology company working with fleets and insurers to find drivers on dangerous roads and help them more safely navigate. Nadeau sits on the Advisory Board for Women in Insurance Leadership and hosts the podcast, the Golfcour.se, a modern forum for business conversations in insurance. She is a graduate of MIT, where she remains a Research Affiliate, and has previously worked for the Urban Institute and Brookings Institution.
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