HOW TO: Manage the launch of a new brand

So you’ve worked your bum off collaborating with your chosen design agency to ensure that your brand is all singing, all dancing and truly represents your mission and vision. Happy Days! You’ve signed off on the logo, the brand guidelines, the website and any added extras designed to truly push your message. Lovely!

…and then what!?

You’ve got a stunning brand but you’re unsure what your next steps should be. Trust us, this is more of a common occurrence than you might think. Any agency worth their salt will stand with you and guide you through the launch process and beyond, but should you find yourself lost and overwhelmed, we’ve put together this quick little guide to lead you in the right direction.

 

Don’t lose steam/Trust your agency

Creating a new brand or rebranding can be exhausting; you have to put a lot of yourself into the process to get the most out and you’re also investing time and money into perfecting it, and so when it’s time for your agency to hand it over to you completely, if you’ve burnt out all of your creative energy by not trusting your agency, you’re not going to have anything left to launch to the best of your ability. You will get so much more out of your process if you allow your designers to deal with the here and now, you so can concentrate on your vision for the future.

 

Plan ahead

As above, it’s crucial that you think strategically throughout the whole branding process. Allow your agency to crack on with the creative so you can diarise teasers and events that suit your marketing strategy. As your visual identity is growing, you can then work with your designers on a stunning visual to match your messaging so that by the time you come to launch, you’ve already laid out your next few steps in getting your audience invested.

 

Solidify your culture

Brand culture is the backbone of your business; ‘the every day’; what drives you to get up in the morning; what drives your employees; how you interact with each other; how you interact with the public. It’s your business’s reason for being and is a presence that is constantly there, though you may not be fully aware of it at first. It’s vital that you take time to analyze your culture and whether it’s steering you in the right direction – if not, it can be gradually shaped in order to better suit your needs, but this may take a good few months, even years to get right. The important thing is that your cultural end goal is visible and understandable so that everybody involved can get on the same page ensuring that even if you veer off track from time to time, you can easily refocus and forge ahead.

 

Get your team on-board

If you’re lucky enough to employ a bad-ass team of brand-ambassadors, then make sure that they’re fully onboard and are behind your reasoning behind the brand or rebrand. If your team members can’t recite your mission and vision verbatim and truly believe what they’re saying, they won’t be able to convince any client or customer that comes into contact with them. Invest in getting them invested, and there are so many options for doing this; on-boarding exercises with beautifully branded print and merchandise, video, team-events, apps and websites. Iron out any worries early and you’ll be laughing.

 

Immerse yourself

Brand and brand culture becomes all the more sustainable when you’re completely immersed in it every day, and a great way of doing this is by changing your environment. It doesn’t have to cost the earth, but a change in signage, furniture style or even a new lick of paint on your workspace walls can signify a real change and promote excitement for the future, new ideas and team cohesion.

 

Avoid overpromising

Just because you’ve launched a new brand, or rebranded your company, doesn’t mean you’re dealing with a completely different creature; this is YOU holding the reigns and we all have to accept our limitations. It’s easy to burst through the doors of your industry with refreshed confidence and, er hum…bravado…but you’re much safer taking small steps to proving to your audience that you’re the best in the business. Let your actions do the talking, not your swanky new logo or website. Integrity is key, so don’t expect to attract perfect clients right off the bat – play the long game and don’t get disheartened if you’re not given everything you’ve ever wanted straight after launch.

 

Don’t peak too soon

Once your launch date is set, don’t go giving everything away on that day. Leave parts of your new brand out of sight and slowly trickle them into people’s line of sight. Intrigue them, don’t scream it their faces, and allow them to ask questions. This promotes a two-way conversation that will inevitably become a lot more valuable than throwing everything you have at your audience and seeing what sticks.

 

Be consistent

Successful branding is ALL about consistency, so make sure that anything you’re putting out into the public eye falls in line with your brand guidelines and strategy. Brand guidelines are created to give a clear set of rules to follow to ensure visual uniformity across all channels, whether in print or digital and although it sounds strict, when you’ve paid a lot to perfect your brand, it’s important to keep it constant. Don’t let your brand be sabotaged and cause uncertainty within the viewer by errantly using an unsuitable typeface or colourway – it may seem like a small mistake but can really make an impact on people’s perceptions of you.

 

Contact the right people

This is an exciting time and understandably you’ll want to tell the world and his wife about your new brand or business, but it’s important to remain targeted when launching. Launch quietly to your close circle and gauge their responses, then when you’re ready and you’ve refined every last detail, be bold and start to contact the people you WANT to notice you; hero clients; media, magazines, journalists…the Queen!?

 

We hope that’s given you an insight into what to think about when launching your brand, but if you’ve got any questions at all then be sure to give us a call or pop in for a chat.