Advisory Jul, 11 2011

Revamp to rake in more returns

‘Name’ signifies the over-all personality of an individual, company and lot of other things. Brand name holds special significance in franchising as it is the identity of the entire franchise network. Read on to know, the increasing trend of re-brandi

By Abha Garyali
Sub Editor
Revamp to rake in more returns

‘What is in a name?’ a famous saying by Shakespeare is the thing of the past. Today ‘name’ often makes or mars the success of the person or a brand. Brand name carries great value in franchising, as people know the company by its brand name, which includes the entire look, feel, ambience and design of the brand. Franchisors make a brand and franchisees propagate that brand. The success of the franchisees enhances the brand name and failure of franchisees brings down the value of the brand name. Aspiring entrepreneurs prefer taking up the franchise of a successful brand that has established its name and is well know name as compared to starting their independent brand. The franchisors who have established their brands over the years with lot of efforts are increasingly opting for re-branding these days, as a successful strategy to increase sales. This article would dwell into the reasons behind franchisors opting for re-branding strategies to climb higher on the success wall.

Re-branding stands for

Before getting into the details of the reasons behind franchisors opting for rebranding let us first understand what rebranding stands for. Re-branding stands for upgrading an already well-established and popular brand. This may include small changes or major changes in its name, slogan, symbol, logo, and design. This is usually done with an aim to increase its popularity, sales and also to reposition it above all its other competitors etc. Beside the visual identity re branding also includes changes in various other aspects like overall marketing strategy, advertising campaign etc.

Why re-branding

The older a brand, the more complacent it can become about its customer-perception, and that seals its fate. In order to remain afresh in the public memory and retain brand-popularity, a re-branding exercise is often undertaken. As informed by Anupam Bansal, Director, Liberty Shoes Ltd, “A 20-30 year old brand which is popular among the senior generation looks towards attracting the youth. The best way is to redesign or rebrand itself.” Similar are the views of Ashwin Uppal, GM Marketing, Graviss Foods Pvt Ltd, who says, “The main aim of re-branding or repositioning is to change our business philosophy. We seek ways to make consumers happy and this is indicated by the tagline or our slogan which we have added with the logo.”

Many brands revamp or re-design their brands with the solo aim of increasing sales and betterment of their brand. Let us have a look at few other reasons for the popularity of re-branding:

Diversifying into other segments: Brand usually rebrand their slogan, design or logo when they want to diversify into other segments or ventures with the aim to increase their sales and popularity.

To target newer clients: An old and established brand looks towards becoming contemporary to attract the new generation. For this the best way is to revamp or rebrand their logo and tag line according to the latest trends.

Communicate a new message: There are cases in which the brand plans to reposition itself to give a new message to its clientele base. This can be due to changes in its Board of Directors or with the entry of a new Head who plans to rebrand the company with a broader perspective.

Maintain youthfulness of brand: Established brands that have been in the industry for a long time go for rebranding to make their brand appealing for the present and future generation.

Means of improvement: In few cases the brands adopt rebranding as an attempt to distance itself from certain negative connotations of the previous brand image. Rebranding makes people aware of certain changes which can be a positive way to increase traffic.

Franchise players and re-branding

Re-branding plays a significant role among franchise players. It can be said that re-branding has come into origin with the popularity of organised market in India, which is dependent on franchising partially. Therefore, franchising can be one of the greatest stimulants for the success of re-branding. In the recent past the few franchise players who have opted for re-branding, whether of logos, design or strategies include Liberty, Jubilant FoodWorks (master franchisee of Dominos), Baskin Robbins and so on.

Liberty, a national footwear brand came into existence more than 50 years ago. However the brand is still favoured by younger generation due to its flexibility in designs and its aim for improvement. The brand has recently revamped its logo, store design as well as the marketing strategy. Informing about the importance of rebranding Bansal says, “It is essential to rebrand from time-to-time among national brands. A market has different type of consumers and with time their preferences change. A brand usually goes for rebranding to become more youthful and cater to the rising needs of consumers.”

Baskin Robbins, a famous ice-cream brand, which is marketed by Graviss Foods Pvt Ltd (owning franchise right for SAARC region) has also employed repositioning of the brand. Baskin-Robbins’ has started its ‘We make people happy campaign’ which would include re-branding the logo, adding new store elements and menu etc.

Uppal informs, “Consumers and their desires keep changing with time. Keeping this in mind a good brand always comes up with better branding themes.”

Cautions while re-branding

Rebranding may be done with the aim to increase sales but it can also have negative results, if not carried with conviction. Firstly in case of franchise brands, it is of utmost importance to discuss re-branding with all franchisees to get their feedback about it. Franchisees being a vital part have to be involved in the procedure. Regarding this Bansal says, “Franchisees are an extended part of the company. They should keep in mind that the franchise owner is doing the re-branding for their benefits also.” He further adds, “Franchise owners must keep in mind the true reflection of the vision that has to be re-branded and should be successful in communicating it to the consumers.” Uppal commented, “The rebranding or repositioning should be relevant to the consumers and the market. Consumers should be able to associate with rebranding.”

To conclude it can be said that re-branding is a must technique for brands to stay longer and be more youthful. However it should also be kept in mind that change is never easy. It cannot happen overnight, as quoted by Uppal. The franchisor and franchisees have to invest a lot of time, hard work in their attempt to revive the brand.

Related: Discovering investment capital

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