Rebranding: What’s your vibe?

Sep 17 2013

When a company or an organization is creating its brand, its goal is to find a feature that identifies how its services are distinct from those of other companies in the same industry. No matter what kind of entrepreneurial organization it may be, few things will build the company value faster and more consistently then an effective brand, according to Business Insider.

The way I think of a brand is the sort of “vibe” the company gives off. For instance, what vibe does a brand like Nike give off to its consumers? To me, Nike’s brand is the feeling of empowerment, inspiration, and motivation I get when I watch one of its ads on TV, or when I buy a new pair of Nike running shoes. The brand is the feeling consumers have about a company.

When a company wishes to rebrand itself, it will change the name, logo, and/or overall vibe of the brand in order to appeal to a new market, or to make its existing market think of the company in a new way.

This summer, I worked at Obviouslee Marketing as a marketing/PR intern. One of the projects I helped with was rebranding a beachfront Charleston resort in an effort to help it attract a new market of consumers: independent women aged 25-40. To get our juices flowing, the other interns and I created boards on Pinterest of different vibe ideas for the new brand. We had four different boards for the four different vibe ideas: cool/blue, surf/sun, vintage, and vibrant.

Over the course of a few days, we pinned various photos into each board that went along with the different vibe ideas and color schemes for the new brand. When it came time to present the new brand ideas to the client, we explained each idea through the Pinterest boards. Seeing photos of the new brand ideas, and the vibe we were going for with each one, helped the client fully conceptualize what the new brand would be. The client was then able to easily agree on one new brand out of the four presented, and that’s the direction we took for the rebranding campaign.

This technique taught me a lot about what it means to rebrand a company, and how it can be a really fun and creative process. I figured this would be an effective way to help rebrand the Lab to appeal to new audiences in the journalism school, the university, and the public in general.

We held a brainstorm last week where everyone threw out the vibe they felt when thinking about the Lab. No idea was a wrong idea, and I wrote everything down. We came up with many good concepts to start with:


Photo: Isabelle Boehling

The next step I will take is to go through these ideas and come up with a common theme among them. This common theme will be our new “vibe,” the new brand we will present to the digital, new age market of journalists and entrepreneurs we wish to attract.

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