Why A DIY Rebranding Isn’t Worth The Savings
We’ve talked before about signs it may be time to rebrand. If you’re feeling off-track, incohesive, if you’ve had PR problems, or if you’ve outgrown your original brand, you know you need to make some changes – but where to start?
If you’ve seen our founder, Re Perez, speak, you’ve probably heard him say that one of the most common questions he’s asked is “hey, what do you think of my logo?” (and not to ask that).
Knowing Just Enough To Be Dangerous
Maybe you’ve heard of the concept of “knowing just enough to be dangerous”. This 2015 op-ed from the New York Times describes an English-speaking critical care doctor working with a Spanish-speaking patient. The doctor knows just enough Spanish to communicate with the patient, but the conversation lacks nuance, context, cultural positioning – all things that we take for granted speaking in our native language.
“I do not know what I might have missed that night,” the doctor concludes. “And what scares me now, looking back at this and countless other similar stories, is that I will most likely never know.”
Here’s the connection to trying to DIY rebranding: Like the doctor diagnosing the patient with only very basic, decontextualized information, asking a branding agency or professional to ‘diagnose’ your logo with no other information may not kill your brand – but it’s tough to do without nuance, context, and any other information regarding your brand as a whole.
Not Knowing What You Don’t Know
These days, it’s not that difficult to find programs that will generate a logo for you – but as we know, audiences hate change. It can be hard enough to rebrand with a strategy, but downright disastrous without.
Here’s the thing: DIY rebranding may seem cost-effective in the short term, but could cost you big by alienating your target audience, not being clear, being strange, clunky, or incohesive.
Even larger brands can make this very basic mistake. Remember back in 2013, when Yahoo rebranded?
“We need to be really entrepreneurial and our attitude is to be really scrappy, and the way that we did the logo — we kept it in-house, we didn’t have someone, you know, as an external firm or consulting firm, we didn’t spend millions of dollars doing it. We did it in a way that came from a very authentic place,” Marissa Meyer said at the time.
But Mayer’s DIY rebranding approach didn’t quite land. “Authenticity” isn’t a synonym for “amateur”. When you’re dealing with something as critical as your brand’s identity, there are so many ways you can go wrong if you’re not quite sure what you’re doing – even if you are a CEO.
Your brand much more than your logo, and trying to rebrand yourself might seem like a good, “authentic” way to go, but it can cost you dearly in the long run.