Sometimes companies outgrow their brand or their website, this is a perfectly normal thing for any business that’s been operating for a few years. As a startup company grows into a serious business they often update their branding to be more professional. An older company looking to capture a new market might go through a website redesign. This doesn’t mean the old branding should be thrown out, good rebranding is about taking what you already have and seeing how it can be expressed in a new way.
Web Designer, Jeffrey Zeldman, is encouraging designers to do more research up front, before starting any new branding projects. He believes it’s important to first research the current brand, and the company itself, even if that company is your own! This method will often save time and money down the road, as the research phase of the project helps guide all future decisions made about the brand.
Doing research might sound like homework, but Zeldman believes it’s better to spend three weeks researching than a year building something that doesn’t serve your needs.
Before you start thinking about a shiny new website or doodling a new logo on a napkin, you should start by conducting some simple stakeholder interviews. Stakeholder interviews are a wide-spanning set of semi-structured interviews with anyone who has an interest in a project’s success. This can include clients, employees, or vendors, basically, anyone who has a relationship with the business is a potential candidate. Determining exactly who to interview can be tricky but, according to Zeldman, there is no such thing as too much research.
Doing a competitive analysis of your competition and the market as a whole will help round out the picture. This will involve gathering data on several competing companies and attempting to identify the current trends, what’s working for them, and what isn’t.
Once you have the right information, you can be confident your new brand or website will help you achieve your business goals.
Our clients come from a wide range of backgrounds and to serve them best we conduct a series of stakeholder interviews to help us better understand the industry and how their company is positioned in the market.
Research is the first phase of any project at Reaction so we can use the insights we gain to help make decisions that serve our clients business goals.