What is Brand Repositioning?

What is Brand Repositioning?
By Nikan

Table of Contents

The term ‘Repositioning’ refers to the act of placing something in a new position. Given this definition, many can infer the concept of Brand Repositioning. This blog will explore Brand Repositioning in depth. You will find all the information you need here, so we recommend staying engaged, especially if you think your brand’s current position is inappropriate and are considering changing it. Let’s get started by defining Brand Repositioning.

What is the Exact Meaning of Brand Repositioning?

While developing a brand, everything may seem fantastic. However, entering the market and facing the real world will wake you to reality. Numerous businesses have found that, after completing brand development, things are not operating as they desire.

Is this the end of the world? Should that business go to bankruptcy? The answer is a big NO! It is possible to change the situation, and the process that streamlines this achievement is called Brand Repositioning.

Brand Repositioning

In simple terms, Brand Repositioning is when a company adjusts its strategies to align with the market better. It’s a vast area that can impact almost everything, from the brand’s core values to its design and content guidelines. Anyway, the goal is always the same. Brand Repositioning aims to make the brand more relevant to the target audience and increase the chance of achieving predefined objectives.

Over time, everything evolves, and new needs show up. As a result, we will witness a behavioral change in customers. Traditional marketing approaches will be less effective than they were before. Hence, even the businesses that were successful in the past should change their path. They should plan for Brand Repositioning to stay in the game and keep their market share.

In the digital era, where we can see Internet footsteps everywhere, changes occur at an unbelievable speed. So, The Brand Repositioning process has gained considerable importance over the past few years, as many companies need this treatment to survive and stay profitable.

With this approach, we change the target audience’s perception of the business. The goal is to keep them attracted to the brand and show them its dynamic nature, which will evolve according to their constantly changing demands. To implement this process successfully, we should acknowledge its pillars first.

A Framework to Keep Brand Repositioning in Line

Not all brand developments and brand positionings are successful. The same holds true for Brand Repositioning. We want to clarify that success is not guaranteed if you plan to reposition your brand. There is a framework that will increase the chance of success in brand repositioning. There are six steps within this framework.

Analyzing Everything

Acting without enough information is a waste of time. The information you need comes from conducting various analyses. Understanding the current situation is crucial before embarking on Brand Repositioning efforts. Gather all the data related to where your brand stands right now. Answer the following questions:

  • What are the brand’s core values?
  • What tone is the brand using now? Is it a good choice?
  • Who is the business’s target audience?
  • How do potential customers perceive the brand?
  • Who are the brand’s rivals? How are they performing?
  • What are market trends that the business can not keep up with?

 

Analyzing brand repositioning

Identify areas requiring enhancement. Comprehensive knowledge of the market, industry, competitors, products and services, etc., is essential to finding the ideal position for transforming your brand.

Redefining the Brand’s Unique Value Proposition (UVP)

A unique value proposition, or UVP, explains why your business is unique and different from all your competitors. Determining a UVP is crucial when establishing a brand, as it helps to keep efforts aligned with the brand identity.

However, when undertaking brand repositioning efforts, the former UVP may not be as effective as you expect. Do not hesitate to craft a new UVP.

It is one of the primary basics of the Brand Repositioning process. What is going to change, and how those changes affect your uniqueness? How do you want to demonstrate your differentiation from other players in the industry?

Planning Strategically

Repositioning a brand requires a well-crafted plan. Having assessed your brand’s current situation in the previous phases and redefined the business’s UVP, it is time to start planning.

Based on the data you’ve gathered, select an outstanding strategy. Who will be the target audience following the repositioning? What brand image changes are necessary? What is the primary communication channel the brand will utilize after maintaining the new position?

Strategic planning involves mapping out clear paths to address these questions. Additionally, defining strategies to achieve goals is another crucial aspect to consider. Lack of proper approaches can lead to defeat in achieving goals. In other words, failure to implement effective strategies may result in significant setbacks in brand repositioning.

Implementing Changes

With the planning phase complete, it’s time to take action! You have a guideline you plan based on the situation you want to change—a guideline tailored to your business’s new unique value proposition (UVP). So, all the infrastructures are set, and you are fully prepared to execute the necessary adjustments.

This phase may involve several efforts. According to your strategic plan, you may redesign the current logo, change prices, or shift your focus to a new target audience demographic. You may have discovered that your business lacks some best-selling products.

As a result, you want to expand the offerings, etc. Anyway, this phase involves implementing changes to kickstart the practical aspect of the brand repositioning process.

Communicating Changes

The brand repositioning will only benefit your business once you acknowledge the target audience about what has happened. Hence, communicating changes to potential consumers becomes another critical principle.

Craft a clear, comprehensive message describing all changes. Provide detailed explanations and inform the target audience through diverse marketing channels.

As you embark on a new path and strive to establish a new market position, you aim to capture the target market’s attention. That is why they must know about changes in your approaches and the direction your business is moving in after the Brand Repositioning.

commuicating changes

Evaluating Results

When you successfully communicate the Brand Repositioning, it is time to gauge the outcome of your efforts. Did the process lead to triumph? Measuring results will answer this question. Track changes in statistics and monitor the target audience’s perception of your brand. Were you successful in creating the desired image in their minds? What do people say about you? Were you able to get back in the game and overtake some competitors?

You defined some goals in the planning phase. Did you achieve them? Are you going to accomplish them soon, or do they seem inaccessible? One of the primary goals likely included increasing sales and profits, so examine sales numbers to find out your situation after implementing Brand Repositioning.

These six basics form a comprehensive framework for success in this process. We will discuss some proven strategies in detail later in the blog. But for now, let’s answer a frequently asked question about this topic.

What is the Difference Between Brand Repositioning and Rebranding?

You have become familiar with brand repositioning’s meaning up until this point. To clarify its difference from Rebranding, one must also define the latter, too. Rebranding is when a business implies significant changes to its image. The overall identity will be affected, and even the name may change!

However, brand repositioning involves adjusting a brand’s market position to align with evolving consumer needs and trends. Therefore, a noteworthy difference is apparent here.

We can compare Brand Repositioning with redesigning an old building. The foundation remains untouched, while the inner decoration and frontage will face changes to make the structure’s appearance acceptable. On the other hand, Rebranding is similar to demolishing a whole structure and starting over with a new one.

Rebranding

A rebranding process usually aims to target new markets. However, companies opting for brand repositioning try to regain consumers’ lost attention by enhancing their perception of the brand, which has changed according to the latest trends. Also, as discussed above, poor brand development from the beginning will require brand repositioning, even for recently established brands.

In some cases, businesses may implement both approaches simultaneously without barriers preventing this method.

To sum up, brand repositioning refers to minor changes within the brand’s identity. But Rebranding involves more fundamental modifications. So, what does your brand need? Rebranding or brand repositioning? Well, it depends. Let’s take a step back and talk about the reasons for considering brand repositioning.

When Should You Prepare to Reposition Your Brand?

There are various circumstances that may necessitate brand repositioning. Do not lose hope if you find yourself in one of these situations. Instead, rally your team and articulate the reasons behind the decision to undergo brand repositioning. Here are some of the most common reasons for brand repositioning.

Falling Far Behind From Competitors

These days, almost all industries are super competitive. Every single day, new names appear that may outperform your business someday. Therefore, if you are a top player with a massive customer base, know that things will not remain the same forever!

Businesses that have fallen behind competitors should consider brand repositioning as a solution. Developing a new Unique Value Proposition (UVP) and securing a new market position can help businesses regain competitiveness and surpass previous rivals.

Major Changes in Customer Needs

As we have discussed in this blog, as time goes by, everything changes, and so do people and their habits. We live in an era where transformations and changes happen off the cuff, meaning in 10 years, nothing will be the same as you have witnessed.

The competitive business landscape results in new inventions and products that affect consumers’ habits and behavior, occasionally changing your target audience’s needs. If you want to remain a key player in the market, identifying new needs and adjusting the brand according to them is inevitable.

Introducing New Products and Services

After releasing a new set of products or expanding your brand’s services, you should reassess your brand’s position to ensure the target audience remains loyal to the brand and gets used to the new offerings.

Expanding offerings is a significant step toward change. Hence, ensuring everything aligns with the brand’s identity is essential. This is where brand repositioning comes into play, aiming to align all brand aspects with the new offerings.

Attracting a New Target Audience

There is a golden formula for small businesses trying to strengthen their foothold in various markets. They should start small and target a tiny group of consumers; after gaining attention and becoming a notable name, they can dream big and target other groups.

Brand repositioning proves valuable when a business seeks to expand its market share and attract new target audiences, whether a small brand aiming for growth or an established company looking to extend its reach.

Enhancing Brand Perception

Brands with bad reputations can count on brand repositioning to solve this issue. As mentioned above, this process will affect how consumers perceive a brand. However, the effectiveness of brand repositioning in shaping consumer perceptions depends on successful implementation.

As you already know, building trust is everything and a super important factor of triumph. Having a bad reputation means that people don’t find the brand trustworthy. A well-strategized plan can address and resolve reputation issues, ultimately earning the target audience’s trust and driving the business’s success.

Staying Current with Technological Advances

With the advent of technology, in 10 years, the equipment your brand is using today will certainly not be as effective as it is now. No matter your industry, not adapting to these changes will cause significant losses. Brand repositioning is an effective strategy for staying current with evolving technologies in the market landscape.

Take Nokia as an example of failure in this matter. This company dominated the mobile industry for several years. However, once smartphones became a reality, they could not keep up, and their old-fashioned technology did not satisfy consumers’ new needs. Although Nokia tried many times to regain its thrones, it has never been near Apple or Samsung in recent years.

This underscores the importance of planning for brand repositioning periodically to showcase the brand’s adaptability to the evolving market. Now, let’s move ahead and learn about brand repositioning different strategies.

Various Brand Repositioning Strategies

We discussed a framework a few sections ago that you can use to ensure the brand repositioning process is going well. After analyzing almost everything and providing a totally new UVP, you should start planning. Several strategies can serve as the foundation for the planning process, such as:

  • Repositioning Based on Target Audience: This strategy emphasizes the business’s target audience. Whether you want to target a different category of consumers or aim to expand the brand’s reach and explore new markets, this strategy is what you need.
  • Repositioning Based on Brand Image: Enhancing how the target audience perceives the brand, highlighting core values, focusing on the emotional connection with customers, etc., all are achievable with this strategy.
  • Repositioning Based on Products or Services: Any changes regarding the brand’s offerings fall into this category. This strategy is beneficial for showing new use cases of the product, improving goods’ quality, and even expanding product lines.
  • Repositioning Based on Price: Sometimes, brands need to reconsider their pricing strategies to gain the target audience’s attention. If you plan to increase or decrease the prices of your offerings, the strategy you should opt for is Repositioning Based on Price.

Emphasizing the importance of comprehensive data analysis is essential for developing an effective plan, regardless of the chosen strategy. Therefore, the first step should involve analyzing everything comprehensively and gathering relevant information. In the following sections, we will examine some successful examples of brand repositioning.

5 Successful Brand Repositioning Examples

Among all successful instances, these five stand out as the most noteworthy ones.

Taco Bell: From Budget to Value

Not long ago, people perceived Taco Bell as a brand offering cheap foods. The problem is that most people usually consider cheap products low-quality.

Authorities of Taco Bell acknowledged the problem and understood the rising attention paid to healthy food. Therefore, they planned one of the most successful brand repositioning of recent years. They transformed from a cheap brand to a solution offering value at a fair price.

They focused on fresh ingredients, unique flavors, and affordability for most society. Campaigns such as ‘Live Mas’ successfully attracted millennials looking for something new and testier in the fast food industry. Taco Bell taught us that brand repositioning is beneficial when a business wants to erase negative preconceptions and capitalize on hot trends in different markets.

Netflix: From DVDs to Streaming Giant

Netflix, as you know today, was initially a DVD rental business. The business model was sound then and perfectly suited customers’ needs. Traditional Brick-and-Mortar stores were their biggest rivals at that time. Nevertheless, technological advances ended the DVD era, and Netflix opted for a notable brand repositioning.

netflix

Correctly identifying the potential in the streaming model, they became one of their kind and turned to the service many of us depend on today. This company is an idol for adaptability. It is the most significant lesson we can learn from Netflix. Always be ready to change before it is too late.

Nike: From Performance to Inspiration

Phill Jones, the founder of Nike, was a former runner. The well-known brand was famous for creating high-performance footwear, providing the best functionality possible. Functionality and high quality were sufficient in those days. However, consumers demanded more as the market evolved and new rivals appeared.

The authorities in Nike repositioned their brand. From that time, they shifted focus to inspiring people. Collaborating with famous athletes all around the globe, they utilize the slogan ‘Just Do it,’ trying to convey the message that nothing is impossible!

Nike believes sports are the solution to pushing boundaries, and it has repositioned its brand to evoke this feeling within its target audience. What can we learn from this example? Brands can tap into emotional connections through repositioning, which has been the key to being a player for decades.

Dove: From Beauty Bar to Body Positivity

The Dove brand started its career by producing soaps, focusing mainly on cleanliness. According to this image, its marketing efforts were limited to a narrow space, preventing it from extending its reach. But the ‘Real Beauty’ Campaign changed everything and took Dove beyond its long-term stagnation.

Dove managers celebrated women of all sizes, shapes, and ethnicities through this campaign, which was a primary part of their brand repositioning process. The goal was to promote self-esteem and body positivity. Following that, a more comprehensive range of audiences became Dove’s loyal customers, and they successfully extended the brand’s empire.

The Dove example shows that pursuing social movements and spreading positive values can help reposition a brand. A large customer base is likely the most prominent outcome of such approaches.

Starbucks: From Coffee to The Third Place

At its beginning, Starbucks was known for its premium coffees. However, it decided to expand its presence and opened several branches worldwide, resulting in criticism for being overpriced. Also, the quality of its services and products diluted over time.

They opted for brand repositioning, making the target audience consider their stores a third place they could visit between their workspace and home. A stamping ground people can relax in and hang out with their friends and loved ones.

starbucks

They invested in comfortable seating, free Wi-Fi, and a wider range of beverages and food to cater to more consumers. Starbucks successfully faded away the wrong perception the brand had previously experienced.

It showed that brand repositioning can go beyond products and services and become a matter of joy. Offering a unique experience to the target audience will benefit all businesses of all types.

It seems like this process is all about achievements! But as we said earlier in this blog, not all brands will succeed along this way. If you plan to reposition your brand, we suggest you gather enough information about its challenges. Keep reading, as we will illuminate obstacles in the next section.

What Are the Main Challenges in the Process of Brand Repositioning?

Success in implementing brand repositioning requires overcoming challenges along the way. Naturally, you should acknowledge the most common obstacles and have a plan for facing them. Let’s delve in and become acquainted with them:

  • Risk of Alienating Current Customers: Any changes in brand direction may disappoint loyal customers. They may no longer resonate with your brand and stop supporting it, which is a considerable loss. Therefore, it is good to always consider your existing customers before implementing any significant changes.
  • External and Internal Resistance: Humans are inherently resistant to change! Some people among potential customers will probably not welcome brand repositioning and will guard against it. Additionally, the firm’s employees will resist, too. They fear that upcoming changes will affect their lives severely. Remember that uncertainty causes panic. The outcome of brand repositioning is unclear and not guaranteed to be perfect. So, it creates apprehension.
  • Damaging Brand Essence: Earlier, we discussed the differences between brand repositioning and rebranding. Despite rebranding, repositioning a brand is about adjusting changes while keeping the original brand identity. Well, it is a tightrope walk. Overlook, and you will see that the brand identity is damaged.
  • Financial Barriers: Many times, affording repositioning is a business’s main challenge. It requires investment, and you can not be sure what you put in will pay off! In other words, it is not a very safe investment.

Before jumping to the blog’s conclusion, let’s examine the last phase of the framework, measuring results, deeply.

How to Measure Brand Repositioning Success Effectively?

According to the framework we examined earlier when everything is done, and everybody has heard about repositioning your brand, you must gauge its performance. To achieve this, follow these three steps:

Set Realistic Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

KPIs are quantifiable metrics that help you track brand repositioning. When planning for this process, you should set realistic KPIs to gauge its performance once it is complete. There are several KPIs you can take into consideration, including:

  • Brand awareness
  • Sales numbers
  • Engagement rate
  • Conversion Rate
  • Market share

Emphasizing realistic expectations and avoiding seeking exaggerated numbers is vital. Brand repositioning is not a magic pill that will solve all issues. Based on your efforts, focus on areas where you anticipate positive impacts from the process.

Gather Customer Feedback and Market Response

KPIs are valuable, but not everything! The goal behind brand repositioning is to get the market’s attention. Therefore, finding out what the target audience thinks about changes that took place is unavoidable.

Run surveys, use social media listening platforms, and interview a few of your loyal customers. This method will provide helpful information on brand perception after repositioning and areas that need enhancement. It’s crucial to remember that if the market does not embrace your brand’s new approach, your efforts are likely to be unsuccessful.

customer review

Monitoring Long-Term Brand Health Indicators

Brand repositioning inherently has a lasting impact on business. Meaning most of its effects will show up after a while. As a result, measuring its health indicators in the long term is advised. These are the top three brand health indicators:

  1. Brand Advocacy
  2. Brand Equity
  3. Brand Differentiation

Combining the results of these indicators will help determine whether brand repositioning was successful or unsuccessful. Now, you know everything about the concept of brand repositioning. It is time to wrap up the blog.

conclusion

In this blog, we examined the meaning of Brand Repositioning and covered its various aspects. Not all businesses possess the necessary resources and expertise to pursue brand repositioning.

If you are among them, we are here to help you. Offering a diverse range of branding services, from Brand Mascot Design to Brand Development, we also reposition your brand at your call in the best way possible. Contact us to discuss details if you want to shift your brand’s current position to a better place.

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