– Discussion of the Week

Q: With trends constantly changing, how do you know when it’s time to refresh your brand image, and what goes into a brand makeover?

A: For any brand, you should constantly be aware of consumer trends and be willing to make changes as needed. You have to stay proactive and thoroughly research both your existing customer base and new audiences that you want to attract to help you decide what to change and what to keep the same. You’ve got to stay ahead of the trends. If you’re not willing to invest the time and resources to evolve along with your customer behavior, you might as well call it quits.

Knowing how unpredictable the economy can be and how downturns impact consumer spending at restaurants, our management team took proactive step to enhance the brand and stay relevant. Our research showed product was not an issue–our customers love our food! For us, rebranding meant updating our service model, marketing materials and building design.

There is a lot that goes into a brand makeover, but it all starts with a strong strategy. The key areas would include culture, strong business model, brand marketing plan, prototype and growth strategy. When re-branding, remember the “make new friends, but keep the old” rule.

Never stray too far from your roots. Remember the product that brought you your original success. While your loyal base of customers will recognize and appreciate that you listened and acted on their needs, a steady stream of new customers will follow.


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