The Secret to Keeping Your Brand "Fresh"
So you've been in business for a while and your brand is starting to lose its "flair" — kinda like Coke that's been sitting out for too long and has lost its fizz.
On the outside, nothing really seems to be wrong. Your brand looks professional and runs like clockwork. Your customers know exactly what to expect from you, and that's the way you built it.
The problem is, your audience is TOO used to it.
They're starting to gloss over your content, ignore your promos, and react to your stuff with, "Oh ok." rather than, "WOW!!".
And since you worked SO hard to get your brand to the point where it's at right now, you don't want to touch anything because you're afraid of breaking your system.
So what do you do? Let's start with the fact that...
Brands are actually meant to evolve.
Yep, you heard me right. Brands aren't meant to be static because they represent an identity — which is something that naturally grows and evolves over time.
Think about it this way, the person you were in high school is probably different from the person you are today. You might have some of the same values, qualities and characteristics, but you've (hopefully) matured and have moved on to bigger and better things in life.
Similarly with brands, it's important to give them space to grow and "mature" as you build your business.
So what does that look like?
On the back-end, you'll need to get really attentive and figure out what ISN'T working. Generally speaking, there are 2 main indicators that something is "off" with your brand:
Your audience engagement is dropping / stagnating
You want to explore something new, but it doesn't quite fit your current branding
Once you figure out what isn't working, the next step is to put on your creative hat and start exploring some of these things on the front-end:
Changing up the language / angle of your messaging
Exploring different visuals / ways of making your brand "pop"
Getting creative with the way you interact with & involve your audience
But how do you do all this without going "off-brand"?
Going back to the analogy I used before about how brands are like people who "mature" over time, it's important for us to recognize that there are some things about your identity that will (probably) never change.
These qualities form the backbone of your brand, and will generally remain unchanged no matter how much you pivot and experiment on the front-end with how you present your brand:
Your core values
The things that usually get switched up as your brand matures are:
Your method of delivery
Your form of expression
An example of this is when I decided to incorporate art back into my social media posts. During that time, my content was starting to feel "flat" because it wasn't engaging my audience on a deeper level. In this case, I decided to switch up my form of expression to help get my message across, while keeping my "why" and my message the same. I wanted it to "hit" differently — and it worked!
So let's say you try experimenting and something goes wrong... what do you do?
Unfortunately, it's quite common for brands to get backlash for switching things up and trying something new. There will always be haters for that new logo, that new slogan, that new product (or even that new haircut).
If you find yourself in that position where you're not quite getting the response you were hoping for...
(Take a deep breath)
Get a gauge of what the general response is
See if it's simply a complaint about something unfamiliar, or if it's a deeper concern about you deviating from your brand's values
Address the concerns with your audience (if necessary)
Make adjustments to your approach (again, if necessary)
At the end of the day, the main thing to remember is that...
People like change in (precisely) small amounts.
Change too much, and people will complain. Change too little, and people will get bored.
The secret to keeping your brand fresh is to keep changing and evolving JUST ENOUGH to keep your audience on their toes, but not so much that you leave them behind in the dust.
It's all about taking people on a journey!!
Still feeling stuck?
The tough thing about branding is that we all have our own blind spots. Sometimes it's helpful to have someone on the outside "spot" you and help you scout opportunities for your brand through a different lens.
If this sounds like something that would be helpful for you, I offer a brand audit service that does exactly just this! Check out the link above for more details 💖