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Navigating a Social Media Rebrand While Maintaining Your Audience

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  • Navigating a Social Media Rebrand While Maintaining Your Audience

Rebranding your business is no easy task, and it takes a team of dedicated, creative individuals to make it happen. Maybe you want a new, updated look. Maybe you’re changing your day-to-day operations. Or, maybe you just want to foster a better connection with your target audience. While there are plenty of reasons to rebrand, it’s important to do it the right way.

In today’s social media-savvy world, any rebranding efforts will also carry over into your digital platforms. It’s essential to make sure your social media rebrand connects with the people who already know and trust your business. Your goal should be to attract new people to your audience while maintaining your existing followers. If you change things too much too quickly, you’ll run the risk of losing those who might have been with you from the start.

So, how can you change your brand’s social media presence while staying true to the heart of your business and retaining your audience? Let’s cover a few important points of navigation that will make a big difference in your success.

Get Everyone On Board

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Before you start making noticeable changes to your brand for your audience, it’s essential that everyone behind the scenes is on the same page.

A rebrand is about more than just putting up a fresh coat of paint (theoretically speaking). It’s a change in attitude. It’s an alignment of values. If everyone isn’t on board, things won’t go as smoothly as you want them to.

How can you ensure everyone is up for your digital transformation? Share your vision. Explain why the rebrand needs to happen and how it will benefit your business. Be aware that some employees and investors might have concerns, so it’s important to know how to effectively respond in a positive light. Be sure to cover the following subjects as you try to get everyone on the same page:

As you get everyone on board, the next necessary step is to provide training. Don’t just demonstrate how the changes will come to be. Make sure your employees understand how to represent your rebranding using the right voice, especially those who interact with your audience online. Most importantly, stick with them as you start to roll out your rebranding efforts. It only takes a few minutes to change the look of your social media platform, but adjusting the “tone” of things can take some time for your employees to get used to.

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Committing to Change

You’re going to have to let your audience know why you’ve made some changes. Maybe the reason is nothing life-altering. An outdated logo or colors are a perfectly fine reason to want to rebrand things. However, your internal team and your target audience deserve to know what to expect during these changes.

If you plan on keeping your mission and values the same, make sure that it is widely known throughout your advertising, on your website, and even in your brand marketing. If you decide to change your message or mission statement, it’s just as important that everyone is aware. By changing things, you run the risk of losing certain audience members, but you could end up gaining even more. Some messages and visions can be just as outdated as logos and colors and require occasional upgrades. As with anything else, change isn’t for everyone, but being transparent with your audience about the motivation behind your rebrand will make it more likely for them to stick with you.

If you do decide to create a new mission statement within your rebranding efforts, keep the following tips in mind to make sure your audience understands where you’re coming from:

  • Keep it short and clear
  • Think about how it will impact your business’s long-term success
  • Don’t make it too limiting
  • Ask for employee and audience feedback

Social media is only one component of a rebranding effort, but it’s an important one when it comes to connecting with your audience. Facebook, for example, has a monthly active user base of nearly 3 billion people. Your chances of building your audience and gaining new leads are much greater than utilizing traditional SEO and hoping people come to your website. It’s a type of inbound marketing that makes it easier for potential customers to make well-researched choices. Your audience is going to check out photos, videos, your written content, and what other people are saying about you on social media to determine whether they trust your business.

That means it’s crucial to be completely open and honest on social media about your rebrand. You might even consider hosting a live Q&A session on your platform. Or, at the very least, make sure you have someone from your marketing team ready to respond to questions or comments so you maintain those loyal relationships and connections with your existing audience.

Be Mindful With Your Messaging

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Whether you’re keeping your existing message or adopting a new one, it’s important that your rebranding efforts match it.

Before you dive into changing the look and feel of your brand, choose words within your messaging that you want people to associate with your business. Focus on company benefits, rather than a specific product or service. Words like dependability, innovative, or trustworthy are all powerful and can tell your audience who you are long before they know what you’re offering.

You should also take your target customers into consideration when fine-tuning your messaging. Who are you trying to market to, and what words will resonate most with those people? You’re likely not going to use the same kind of messaging for teens as you would middle-aged mothers.

By keeping buyer personas in mind throughout your rebrand, you’ll maintain your existing audience by letting them know you still care about their needs and wants.

Once you have your messaging in place, it’s time to have a little fun and let your creativity shine.

New branding requires things like color changes, logo upgrades, and design shifts on all platforms. Social media makes those changes fairly easy. In most cases, you’ll have your graphic design team work on a few pieces that can be optimized for each platform. Then, it’s just a matter of uploading images where they fit.

However, the design matters. From the colors you choose to the way your fonts look, the imagery of your rebrand can either turn people away or pique their interest.

One way to keep your designs consistent with your message is to utilize color psychology. Nearly every major corporation uses it, and most people don’t even realize how logos and colors can influence their feelings toward a brand.

Consider some of the most well-known brands in the world. What comes to mind when you think of McDonald’s? What about Target? How about Facebook?

Chances are, you can instantly see the logos of those companies in your mind, and it’s the color that stands out. McDonald’s simply wouldn’t be the same without the “golden arches,” and Target is easy to spot thanks to its vibrant red circle. Color is more than just a visual reminder, though. It’s a tool that you can use to offer a subconscious message to your audience.

To decide which colors best fit your brand, it’s important to understand what they’re associated with. Let’s take a look at a few of the most common hues:

  • Red – Strength, excitement, modernity
  • White – Purity, cleanliness
  • Black – Sophistication and power
  • Blue – Intelligence, communication, trust

Obviously, there are countless shades of each color and different ways they can be incorporated into your logo and basic marketing design. However, because colors can convey so much, it’s essential to choose one or two that fit well with your message. It’ll show consistency and tie everything together, so your audience will have a better understanding of who you are from the moment they look at your logo.

Get Trendy

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If you want to focus a lot of your rebranding efforts on social media, you should have a goal to build your audience while maintaining your existing followers. One of the best ways to do that is to understand current social media trends and take part in the ones that make sense for your brand or your new message.

Some of today’s top social media trends include:

  • Short-form videos
  • Influencer marketing
  • Snackable content
  • Live videos

No matter what you’re doing with your rebrand, building a stronger connection with your current social media audience should be a top priority. All of these trends can help you do that by pulling back the curtain and showing your followers (and potential followers) who you are and what you stand for.

Things like live videos, behind-the-scenes photos or videos, and short pieces of content that ask questions or spark discussions will all help to foster engagement. The more your audience feels a connection with your brand, the more likely they’ll be to stick around as you go through different changes and updates. It’s also a good idea to “humanize” your efforts. Show yourself or your employees on video or in pictures. If you’re not comfortable with that, work with influencers who make sense for your business. The right influencer can become the “face” of your brand, and you’ll get the benefit of engaging with their followers, as well as your own.

So, don’t stop your rebranding efforts at colors and messaging. Consider developing a new social media strategy along the way, and think about how your brand can focus on connection.

Don’t Ditch Your Old Branding Entirely

Sometimes, brands need a complete overhaul to stay afloat.

That can happen if you’ve experienced some bad publicity or if your business is barely hanging on because everything is so outdated.

However, even when it’s necessary, there are a lot of risks involved with changing the entire look and feel of your brand. If you’re unrecognizable, you’re probably going to lose some people in your existing audience. They’ll either assume the basics of the business are different, or you’re changing your operations. Quick changes can be hard for people to handle, especially when they’ve formed a trusting relationship. If possible, it’s a good practice to keep some small aspects of your old branding integrated into your new efforts.

One corporation that gets this right, again and again, is Disney. Think about how many times they’ve slightly adjusted their logo, colors, and even Mickey Mouse over the years. However, there is always a sense of familiarity. There’s always something that they borrow from previous logos and designs to integrate into the new one. That helps people feel more comfortable. They also keep their messaging consistent, no matter what their designs look like, which is especially important on social media platforms.

Maybe you’ll use different colors but keep the same fonts. Or, maybe you’ll keep your old slogan but change everything else about your brand. If your goal is to maintain your audience, completely changing the look and feel of your brand overnight isn’t the way to go. It can be confusing, frustrating, and might make your business harder to trust.

You started your business with certain brand imagery and messaging in mind for a reason. Though things change and often need adjusting, you don’t have to lose the heart of what started your business in the process. Don’t be afraid to keep a small piece of your old branding to let your audience know you’re still the trustworthy business they’ve always loved, even if you’ve changed your look.

A social media rebrand is a great way to connect with your audience while targeting new individuals to engage with you. While it shouldn’t be the only part of a rebranding strategy, it’s also one that shouldn’t be ignored. Showing consistency across all platforms will make your business more visible, more recognizable, and more trustworthy. Whether you’re considering a rebrand in the near future or you’ve just started to think about how you can develop stronger connections with your social media audience, keep these tips in mind to make the process as successful as possible.

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