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From our Founder, Kasia: What I’ve discovered from 10 years of operating a small enterprise – Half 3 (Rebranding a enterprise)


Hello! LH Agenda Founder, Kasia right here. This text is Half 3 of a Q&A between the LH Agenda neighborhood and me (you possibly can learn Half 1 and Half 2 right here), and all about rebranding a enterprise. Previous to this 12 months, our model was often known as Leaders in Heels however a need to broaden our product and buyer base drove us to change our model title and brand to LH Agenda mid-2021. I hope you discover some sensible takeaways on this article that will help you, it doesn’t matter what stage of the rebranding and/or work trip you’re at!

Q&A with Kasia

Q: As Founder, how did you determine to rebrand to LH Agenda, and the way lengthy did the rebranding course of take?

A: This was a really tough choice for me and it didn’t occur in a single day.

It most likely took round 3 years since I first had the considered rebranding earlier than I truly began to motion it. It might have been a lot simpler to depart the whole lot because it was, and that’s what I had completed for fairly a very long time. Early on, we invested a lot money and time in rising the model, logos and designs. However the considered rebranding stored coming again to me yearly and I couldn’t cease enthusiastic about “what if”… I simply knew I wanted to take the chance and do it

The method of selecting a route and model title ended up taking round 3 months. And it took many discussions with my colleagues, pals, and mentors, and there have been a lot of issues to contemplate.

Our clients had at all times been divided on our female model title – some beloved Leaders in Heels, whereas others had been left feeling disempowered and excluded in the event that they weren’t office-based leaders. Some felt the title centered an excessive amount of on look. Our authentic model title labored properly for the place we began, nevertheless it was time to refresh and reset our targets with a rebrand.

Our new targets centered on better inclusivity for all females and males, in the present day and sooner or later, and suppleness to sooner or later create and market a stationery assortment for teenagers, which is one thing I’d like to do. The folks which can be 20-something years-old now can be progressing their profession and searching for management sources within the subsequent 5, 10 and 20 years. And we would like LH Agenda to be there for them, and make sense to their chief identities.

Q: How did you select the brand new title, LH Agenda?

A: They are saying that probably the most inventive concepts come to us after we are relaxed. I got here up with the title LH Agenda whereas swimming!

Selecting a brand new model title is certainly an essential choice. I’m positively not an skilled right here, however I’ve chosen model names twice now. 😉 This time round, I actually needed the model title to be:

  • Brief.
  • Significant, with a narrative behind it.
  • Anti-discriminatory and appropriate for teenagers, kids and unisex merchandise.
  • Imprecise sufficient to permit us to develop past a stationery model long-term.
  • Straightforward to write down, spell and say (particularly with my Polish accent).
  • Out there as a .com area and Fb and Instagram handles.

We stored the letters LH – to honour our firm origins and remind us of the continuing Leaders in Heels values. ‘Agenda’ is the plural of the Latin phrase ‘agendum’, which accurately means ‘one thing to be completed’. I additionally love that the phrase ‘Agenda’ has a number of meanings which can be all very related to our enterprise. A few of these meanings embody; a listing or plan of issues to be completed, a listing of issues to be mentioned at a gathering, and even an appointment diary. (We love this as a result of our best-selling merchandise are our planners and assembly notebooks).

I needed to verify the model title DIDN’T have a direct that means, comparable to LH Stationery or LH Leaders. That is in order that, if we ever find yourself altering our enterprise merchandise or route, the model title can evolve and develop with us. That’s most likely my greatest tip to others enthusiastic about rebranding: select a reputation that signifies who your model is, but in addition retains your choices open for progress.

“My greatest tip to others enthusiastic about rebranding: select a reputation that signifies who your model is, but in addition retains your choices open for progress.”

Q: How did your neighborhood really feel about your rebranding? How do they really feel now that it’s all out?

A: I’ve acquired a lot of messages from individuals who thought we did a superb job in speaking the rebrand. Nonetheless, after we first communicated our choice to vary the title it actually ruffled some feathers! It created a lot of questions and confusion.

Some folks thought we had been closing down. Some advised us they beloved the femininity of Leaders in Heels title they usually thought that the title didn’t have to vary to deliver inclusivity. Some mentioned they had been sorry to see us make the change ‘only for males’ as a result of they thought the scales had been already tipped so closely in males’s favor. I feel they missed the purpose that together with males was the least precedence of our causes for the change. The principle purpose was to be extra inclusive to all girls.

What we discovered from the expertise is the need to often talk together with your buyer neighborhood all through the rebranding course of, and to arrange for rebrand suggestions.

Don’t presume that your clients will see your first and solely message about rebranding – ship them reminders and reply their questions alongside the way in which. We even had to consider what enterprise title our subscribers would see of their emails, so we stored the ‘From’ area as ‘LH Agenda (prev. Leaders in Heels)’ for a few months. You might attempt one thing comparable.

The reality is, there’ll at all times be individuals who criticise your selections, each in enterprise and in life. Individuals usually resist change and like to inform themselves that the enterprise mannequin that labored yesterday will proceed to work indefinitely. However as CEO, my job is to be the enterprise visionary and stay up for our future. My choice to write down an thrilling new chapter for my enterprise was on goal and pushed by coronary heart.

Once I owned that, and stepped into the consolation of my choice, I began to get a bunch of help from the LH Agenda neighborhood members too. Our loyal neighborhood understood that we weren’t going away, and that we’d at all times stay dedicated to empowering girls – now and sooner or later. Now that ‘highly effective girls’ aren’t talked about immediately by means of our model title, we’re cautious to maintain mentioning it not directly in our web site content material, packaging, and product design.

Q: Any ideas for somebody taking a look at rebranding?

A: Altering a model title is an enormous, massive job. Our rebranding meant that we needed to change the web site URL, all social media handles, all beforehand revealed paperwork comparable to ebooks or downloadable freebies, all contact types settings, all welcome electronic mail sequences to our members, wholesale registrations, ATO, ASIC, automotive registrations, insurances… EVERYTHING needed to be modified.

As I discussed beforehand, be sure that to speak your plans to rebrand with folks forward of time. The worst factor you are able to do right here is shock folks. Think about… they go to mattress one night time understanding you as one enterprise after which they get up the subsequent day to an electronic mail from you underneath a very totally different enterprise title. That doesn’t do nice issues for model belief!

Talk with folks, get their buy-in and reply all questions and considerations earlier than the precise rebrand. Additionally, don’t change the whole lot directly – make any rebranding transition progressive. Check out the photographs beneath, exhibiting how our model refreshers spanning 10 years result in this seamless new model look (regardless of our rebrand, our brand didn’t have to vary a lot in 2021). Our values have additionally remained fixed with each model change.

I’ve created a Rebranding Guidelines so that you can use beneath.

Rebranding Guidelines

  • Select a reputation (with room to develop).
  • Safe the area.
  • Talk with clients, stakeholders, associates, and so on. all through the method.
  • Do a stocktake of all advertising and marketing you’ve gotten on the market together with your previous model – billboards, digital promoting, recurring journal promoting campaigns, and so on. – and replace.
  • Replace social accounts – change over account names, set up constant branding, and so on.
  • Replace emails – design, logos, in-text references, hyperlinks to social accounts, ‘From’ area, and so on.

Rebranding to LH Agenda hasn’t been our first refresh. If you recognize us from the early days, you would possibly bear in mind this primary brand from 2011. I created it utilizing a particular shoe font. Our tagline was ‘Solely Ladies’s Enterprise’. It was actually primary and hmm….. probably not my style in the present day. 🙂

 

Right here you possibly can see our second brand – a bit of bit sleeker.

Our third brand: by the point we launched merchandise the model wanted a refresh, and to look extra subtle on merchandise.

 

Third brand as seen on merchandise.

 

Our fourth brand: a model title change and additional brand refinement.

 

Present brand: that is the entry to my workplace proper now.

——–

Rebranding a enterprise takes bravery, and plenty of manufacturers would quite stick with the established order. If LH Agenda is something to go by, the rebranding course of can take months, if not years, and contain varied steps and essential selections to make. It’s essential to speak together with your clients all through and preserve an open thoughts, however don’t be afraid to stay to your weapons and your imaginative and prescient.

That’s a wrap on our particular birthday Q&A! Keep in mind, you possibly can compensate for Half 1 and Half 2 right here on our web site, and might go away any additional questions you’ve gotten for me as a enterprise founder within the feedback part beneath.

Be impressed,

Kasia



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