Since starting a Brandworkz in May (how is it already nearly two months that I’ve been here?!) I’ve spent a fair bit of time musing over the power of ‘brand’ for companies. I’ll admit that it came as something of a shock to me to discover that intangible assets (intellectual property, goodwill and brand recognition) account for 87% of a brand’s overall value1. This means that of the $286bn that Alphabet (the parent company of Google and currently the world’s highest-value brand) is worth, $249bn is made up of these intangible assets. That is an astronomically large sum of money.
This, in turn, got me thinking about the amount of money that companies spend on maintaining their brand. Now unless you’re a company like Rolex, who have only changed their logo twice since it was established in 1925*, your brand will undoubtedly evolve to reflect changing times (sorry, that’s an inadvertent pun – for once). Netflix, for instance, rebranded just 17 years after its original launch – at an estimated cost of 10% of its total revenue2, or a pricey £1.2bn.
I can understand that strategy behind a rebrand, indeed we’ve just undergone our own rebrand here at Brandworkz. Out go the more complex and less web-friendly styles and in come the simpler, ‘cleaner’ designs and cues. The part that is often fuzzy, however, is how different companies handle the roll out and ongoing management of the brand.
Imagine you’re a brand owner
You’ve realised that your brand is out of date for the current market. In a traditional rebrand process, you’ll pay a creative agency to carry out an end-to-end review of the brand and create an updated version. Depending on the size of your company and (to an extent) its age, this can take anything up to six months to carry out. At the end of it you receive a nice, shiny output of a refreshed brand complete with elements such as brand guidelines and templates. Hurrah, job done! Well, not quite.
If there’s one thing that we’ve learned over the last few months since our own rebrand it’s that rolling out a rebrand is where the hard work begins. If you’re a small company you’ll have to worry about things like your website, email signatures and key presentations. If you’re a medium sized company you’ll also need to look at who is responsible for roll out in each of your locations, who manages this team, who deals with updating social media accounts, etc. If you’re a large company, or if you work with a partner network, you’ll have a mammoth job on your hands.
The risk that is always run with a brand roll out is that it isn’t – and may never be – complete. Someone, somewhere, will likely still be using the old email signature (spoiler, it’s probably your CEO). There’ll still be that old logo hiding somewhere in the vast expanse of the web. There’s also probably a partner somewhere that wasn’t aware you were going through a rebrand and who has happily continued using your old brand image. This mixture of the old and new of your brand can cause confusion in the market, diluting your impact. My question, therefore, is this:
With so much money riding on the clear and consistent representation of your brand, how will you manage roll out and implementation?
The case for brand management software
Yep, you guessed it. Here’s where the Brandworkz sell comes in! It turns out that I was a little late in my thinking on this one – just by the odd year or seven. Jens, our CEO, had already looked at this in 2012 and realised the gap in the market. That’s where Brandworkz was born from, and over time the solution has evolved to cover not only roll out and ‘simple’ brand management steps but the entire brand management process. We help a whole host of clients to not only manage rebrands (to date our biggest success has been with JLL where we’ve got the hat-trick of brand refreshes) but also many of the day-to-day brand management challenges that internal branding teams face.
Whether you’re looking to rebrand or simply looking to gain more control over your brand real estate, the Brandworkz brand management solution can provide your internal and external teams with a single solution to meet all your brand management needs. If you’re interested in finding out more about Brandworkz then please visit our website or alternatively send me a message – I’m always happy to meet up for a coffee and a chat.
*Once in 1965 to change the crown from gold to bronze and the text from green to pewter blue, then again in 2002 when they changed back to the original gold and green design.