A brand's history review for a rebrand

The Vice Design Co Rebranding Philosophy

Rebranding philosopy quote by Robert Baden Powell

In the career of a designer, it will one day be necessary to update a client’s visual branding.  With these projects, I always follow one rule “Leave it better than you found it.”  It’s a quote attributed to Robert Baden-Powell, a turn of the century military leader, author, painter and illustrator.  It’s actually a sentiment I try to apply to many aspects of my life, but especially to how I handle a rebranding project.  In case you don’t know, a rebrand is the change the corporate image of a company or organization.

There are many reasons why an organization wants to change it’s image.  Sometimes an image has simply become stale, other times they’re chasing a new demographic.  In the worst cases, they’ve suffered a catastrophic setback and need to move away from their previous image.  No matter what the reason is though, my stategy follows the same tw0-step process.

An Eye For The Past

A brand's history review for a rebrand

I start out reviewing the organization’s place in history.  If an organization’s survived to a rebrand, they definitely have some presence in thee market.  And if there’s a presence, there’s history.  A designer must be aware of that history to be able to improve on it.  When I’m tackling a brand update, I make it a point to give the history a the reverence it deserves.  By including an iconic swoop, a telltale color or familiar shape, a spanking new logo can retain the feeling of a brand while also modernizing it. Though a designer has to also make sure to not be drowned by the past.   Like the old saying goes, if you don’t learn history, you’re doomed to repeat it.  Learn it, then move it aside and grow from it.

The Vice Design Co Rebranding Philosophy

The future can’t be seen, but a designer has to do his best.   Taking into account a company’s past image and their present goals, a rebrand is a taking a boat into uncharted waters.  The designers hand-crafted raft has a map of the past and a plan for the future.  And the plan is built by the goals of the client.  Using those and knowledge of the client’s target market charts the design process and end product.

A proper rebrand looks to the future while staying aware of the past.  Brands can be successfully revamped by adapting current styles while celebrating their history.  I believe any designer taking one on has to understand that to be successful.  Throwing away the past of a brand could mean alienating any previous fans.  And not addressing where the client wants to go kills the reason of the project.  A good designer rides the line, being reverant of  the past and embracing the now and beyond.

If you need help with a rebrand, contact me.

Vice Design Co. rebrand philosophy

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