Changing Logos & Branding ConsistencyPosted October 09th 2012 @ 10:28 am by Jerod
Over the last couple of weeks, I spent nearly 40 hours traveling more than 20,000 miles on eight different United Airlines planes as I embarked on an Australian adventure. It was an awesome trip.
Along the way, I noticed that United finds itself in the middle of branding mess nearly two years after completing their merger, at least from a marketing perspective, with Continental. Some planes still have Continental logos on videos and headrest covers. Others still have stickers on the back of the tray tables with the old tulip United logo. And of course, there are plenty implementations of the new logo too, which is a combo of the Continental globe mark and the United font. To this communications person, it wasn’t pretty.
It proves the point that changing a name or a logo isn’t easy. Even a company as large as United still can’t track down every little nook and cranny where the logo exists. While they’ve changed most, there are some old logos still running rogue and sending an inconsistent message to customers.
While much smaller in size, churches often find themselves in the same branding jumble when they decided to rebrand. If you’re thinking about going through the process, here are a few things to keep in mind.
- Commit the resources to make all the changes at once. It’s expensive to change branding. Signage, stationary, website updates, name badges and more add up quickly. If you’ve decided it’s important enough to change your name or logo, commit the resources to making it happen. If you’re not willing to do that, do you really believe in the change?
- Don’t jump the gun. It’s exciting when you land on a new logo. You want to show it off. You’re tempted to start using it right away or phasing it in. But doing that just creates brand confusion.
- Be ready to change things quickly. If you see something with the old logo, take action. Change it right away. Don’t turn your head away and pretend like you don’t see it. In other words, don’t let things go rogue. I went to a church where there was a name change. Volunteers loved holding on to their old name badges and shirts. They continued to wear them while serving on the weekends. They even tried to dumpster dive when the old stuff was thrown away. It may be a hard conversation, but let them know why you’re making the change. Then take the old stuff and hand them a new replacement.
- Don’t go it alone. You may be the communications chief, the brand ambassador and the director of all things logoed, but if you are the lone ranger on this project you are setting the rebranding up for difficulties. Create a plan that utilizes all staff plus teams of your core volunteers to identify what needs to be changed and how it’s going to get done. After all, the staff and volunteers who work in the different church departments will have a better idea of where those tucked away brochures and rogue old signs are hidden. Bottom line, when you invite people to work with you, your congregation will see that this isn’t just a communications thing, it’s a whole church initiative.
- Create a list of everywhere your logo appears. It’s good to have a checklist so you know what needs to be changed. Doing this ahead of time will help you be better prepared to order all the new stuff at once in bulk. Keep the list up-to-date incase you need to make other changes in the future.
- Understand why this is important. You went through the work and struggles of doing the rebranding so commit to making the change in the right way. Remember you are doing this because you know it will better represent who you are as a church, help unify your communications and more accurately express your vision. That’s important stuff.
Have you gone through branding changes at your church? What would you add to the list?