The PR Side of Rebranding

Sep 22, 2019 - Maggie Bakle

So you’re looking to rebrand. It’s time. New owners, new products, new generation… we get it. In fact, sometimes we even encourage it. Heck, we’ve DONE IT. 

However, there’s a right and a wrong way to move forward with a rebrand. Deciding to make the change and how it’s implemented is a big step and nothing to take lightly. Let’s talk about some of the dos and don’ts of the public relations aspect of launching a shiny and new “you.”

1. DON’T forget your history
One of the biggest mistakes we often see is a company, organization, university, etc. launching a new name and logo, then totally erasing their past. While it’s understandable that you want to start fresh, you have to remember the history that got you here. 

"You can't go forward without having knowledge of the past." - André Leon Talley

A great example is the cable-TV network, ABC Family which rebranded itself as Freeform. Without any context, this threw its viewers for a loop. ABC Family had its mission right in the name: family-friendly television for all viewers. The name change had many concerned about the content, would it change, too? However, ABC Family/Freeform remained diligent in letting viewers know that the network wasn’t forgetting its roots and that history would continue to guide future programming. When considering a rebrand, specifically a new name, think of your audience. How will they respond? How will it affect them? And, how will they company’s history play into the new branding?  

2. DO get it out to the public
Why rebrand if no one’s going to notice? Get the news out there! A press release is the first step to revealing your rebranding efforts. Remind your target consumers where you’ve been, who you are, why you’re making the change, and how it will affect them. Also, play up the benefits of the rebranding.

Nichols Brand Stories used to be Nichols Company just three years ago. When making the transition we had to inform our clients about the change in name and leadership, why we opted for a new name, and how it would affect them. Not only is this good for maintaining relationships and a positive brand image, it also gets your name out there. And who doesn’t love free publicity?

3. DO remain consistent
New name, new you. Don’t flip-flop. Once you make the change, stick to it. One of the most confusing things a company can do is a launch a new name or look, but continue to use the old. Yeah, it takes a while to get used to it. And your customers still might refer to your company by its former name. But that doesn’t mean you should. Train your audience, and your entire team, by not making the same mistake.

4. DON’T do this on your own
Thinking of a rebrand? Hire an agency to take you through the process. There is much more that goes into a rebrand, from research and strategy to design changes and promotion than most people realize. Nichols is well-versed in the ins and outs of marketing and public relations. Want to learn more? Give us a call or visit our website at