Do you know your brand? Is it fresh? Do your customers know what you offer and is it different now than it was when you first started your business? These are the type questions Ken Wayland and Ha Koehler of Free Agents Marketing say you should ask yourself about your business. Wayland and Koehler presented a Chamber Education Session at Altierus Career College on October 25th. Altierus Executive Director Jacob Kasuba welcomed the chamber guests and speakers knowing his College just completed a rebrand last month. Formerly Everest College, the Chesapeake location rebranded to better align with the Altierus brand that provide alternate paths of study for higher education.
Wayland and Koehler were also key players in Hampton Roads Chamber rebrand last year. “A rebrand is a journey.” Wayland repeats often. “This is not a sprint.” One of the most important things to do before a rebrand is research. Find out who your customers think you are. Koehler says “at its core a brand is a feeling, an emotional connection.”
Koehler says some of the reasons companies rebrand are a merger/acquisition, mission/vision change, new ownership, expanded products, bad reputation, or the brands is no longer relevant. Before embarking on the rebrand journey make sure you have company buy-in and the funds to see the rebrand all the way through.
Companies not looking to rebrand can look to refreshing their brand. Simply changing the colors or fine tuning a logo can make an impact with customers.
To make the decision to rebrand or to refresh, Koehler and Wayland say to ask yourself these questions:
Altierus Career College adjunct teacher Claude Gist participated in the Chamber Education Session. He said with the college’s new brand “the students are more engaged, it’s fun, it’s exciting. The body of the school is the same but this is a fresh start with a new brand. Our main job is our students and we are making a difference in their lives.”
Wayland wrapped up the session again cautioning not to rush the process and don’t expect your brand to change overnight. It is worth the investment to have an outside firm to the research before you start the process. That way you have clear honest input directing the journey.
Thank you to the sponsors for the Chamber Education Series: Presenting, Southern Bank; Luncheon, Farm Fresh; Host, Altierus Career College.