Resolving to rebrand? Why a new logo shouldn’t be your goal.

And just like that, it’s January again. A time of new goals, crisp calendars (for those who still do paper) and optimism for the new year ahead.

But just about now, there’s a common imposter “goal” that finds it’s way onto many organizations’ annual communications plans. This year we want to remove its mask and reveal it for its true nature.

We’re talking about “The Rebrand.”

Far too many organizations — large and small — confuse their visual look and logo with their actual brand. And it’s common to reach for a visual rebranding as a panacea for lackluster marketing performance and community engagement.

Yes, it’s true that maintaining a current and attractive look is important. And if you’re sporting creative that is older than your interns, it’s definitely time to refresh.

But in reality, your brand is far more than just your logo. And it’s not a goal in and of itself, either.

Your brand is the bridge between your mission and your vision. It’s a tool for engaging your community in order to reach your goals.

And for the tool to properly do its job, a rebranding effort should neither start, nor end, with your logo. It requires clear vision and a comprehensive approach, with each step advising the next, including:

  • Understanding your audience
  • Developing a message that marries your mission and your audience’s needs
  • Designing a recognizable image to reinforce that message
  • Creating an experience that drives engagement

Audience. Message. Image. Experience. Try to make “image” do all the work on its own, and you’re destined for disappointment.

Too often we hear about organizations who dropped thousands of dollars on updating their letterhead, their website and their print collateral with their new “brand,” without taking the time to really define their vision, their voice and the audience they’re trying to reach. Sadly, their efforts have typically failed.

So this year, don’t just put a new look on your list of goals. Instead, revisit your organization’s vision. And make a true rebranding a key objective that helps you achieve it.

For an expert approach to research-driven rebranding—an approach that impacts your organization’s very culture and drives member participation—give us a call at 267-468-7949 or drop us a line at!