Strategy can assuage rebranding expenses [Central Penn Business Journal (PA)]
(Central Penn Business Journal (PA) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) REGION
Like many things in business, rebranding can be expensive, but cost doesn't have to be what keeps you from putting your best face forward, executives said.
It can be an investment in the company's future.
"We've been growing pretty rapidly in the marketplace ... (rebranding) was a good way for us to communicate that," said Ron Kreider, president and CEO of Lancaster County-based dairy and grocery products company Kreider Farms.
The Penn Township company recently completed rebranding efforts that stretched out over several years for planning and execution.
Kreider Farms introduced twolabel packaging for its milk and new packaging for juice, eggs and ice cream, too. It put new "wallpapering" on all of its delivery trucks, which shows offthe company's product imagery. Executives reviewed 68 versions before reaching a decision, Kreider said.
The rebranding included the company website and all other forms of outreach as well. But the effort came at a big cost: $200,000 to be exact, he said.
"That's not a lot for some of our larger competitors," Kreider said, "but it was a significant expense for a small family-owned company like ours."
Dave Andrews, Kreider's vice president of sales and marketing, said the company tried to keep its marketing "down the middle" in the area of cost, which meant stretching it out over time.
"It's definitely been a process that didn't happen all at once," he said. "That would've definitely increased the cost."
Many companies look at modernizing and standardizing their branding and imagery, and equally, all of them worry about what it will cost, said Julie Lando, president of York-based Moxie Design & Marketing.
Smaller companies could spend a few thousand dollars, while larger companies could spend hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars, she said. But more important than size of the company is what executives want to spend the money on and in what time period, she said.
"Sometimes, it might be beneficial to spread it out (over time) for financial reasons," Lando said.
Even if a company does that, its executives still need to think about the strategy and consistency of their branding, she said. Don't keep your old logos and marketing for some things, or you'll create brand confusion.
Confusing potential clients isn't the best way to attract business, she said.
The key to rebranding is not only a consistent message to your outside audience but also internal branding, Lando said.
Roll out your rebranding efforts to your staffand include them in the discussions so they don't feel blindsided.
They need to understand why the company is going in a new direction, she said. Companies don't want staff-the ambassadors of their brands - sending mixed and confused messages to the public.
"Most companies fail in that aspect," she said. "(Employees) don't feel involved and part of that message."
Branding a company is more than image, said Bill Kobel, vice president of strategy and integrated communication at Dauphin County-based JPL. Product management, the customer experience, internal culture, employment decisions and comprehensive communication all are important, he said.
"It's best to develop the core of the strategy and roll it out all at once," Kobel said.
But for companies managing a rebranding with budget constraints in mind, rolling it out in logical phases can be a way to control cost, he said.
"You can be very good and do these things tactically until you run out of money," Kobel said. "But addressing these issues strategically means managing the brand, marketing and communications in conjunction with planning and budgeting."
That allows companies to do the complete package for an effective rebranding without breaking the bank, but it also will allow greater participation and understanding from your staff, he said. In that way, rebranding can be a sustained effort to improve the company as a whole.
Rebranding can be expensive but justified as a point of pride, Kreider said. The company is proud of its environmentally conscious efforts and that it does not sell milk from cows that have been injected with hormones, he said.
"If we're the premium brand in the market," Kreider said, "then we should have the prettiest trucks and the best packaging and the prettiest website."
By Jim T. Ryan
(c) 2013 Journal Publications Inc.
[ Back To Technology News's Homepage ]