The rebranding exercise is not a surefire means of scoring new customers. There is a series of processes that has to be undertaken with efficiency and clarity, but there are search engine optimisation (SEO) benefits around the corner if this crossroads moment is embraced correctly.
Many operators out there in the commerce world would perceive “rebranding” to be nothing more than an aesthetic change that updates a logo here and integrates a new website there. That could be the case in some circumstances, yet it is an opportunity to realign the business with grander goals and focus in on a strategy that can save the long-term viability of an organisation.
Social media is a realm that can bear the fruits of the rebranding labour given the ability to share, promote, comment on and send that updated message out to the online community. Think of it as a fantastic media opportunity: “Look at us! We have a brand new look and a fresh attitude to boot!”
From the logo to the interface and slogans that encapsulates what the organisation is about, the level of change is up to the enterprise as the SEO impact is felt at a later stage. The widely accepted timeframe for an SEO application to begin to show results is approximately 3-4 months, making a social media rebrand far from a short-term activity.
So why go down this road in the first place? Will your enterprise gain any extra visibility from a rebrand and if so, what are they? Here we will discuss the optimisation benefits of giving your social media accounts a refurbish.
Chance to engage new user base
The shared economy app Airbnb is today a behemoth in the marketplace and dominates the industry of short-term lodgings. Yet when it was founded in 2008 by a number of San Francisco start-up engineers, the brand was lacking any impact.
With a logo that struggled to gain traction with bloated text and light blue background, the company eventually opted for a cutting edge design that gave Airbnb a point of difference and credibility in the eyes of investors and users. Fast forward today and their stock value is north of $2.6 billion, an indication that rebranding can be a profitable venture if it is executed well.
This case study speaks to a number of factors, but one of the most important is the need to engage new users. Should the image that is portrayed to the wider public be tacky, unprofessional, amateur or lacking the gravitas to be taken seriously, then don’t be surprised when competitors have overtaken the space you wish your brand to occupy.
Rebranding on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google+ and all social media outlets announces to the world that you are striving to be taken seriously and have the resources to pull it off. Airbnb are an example of an enterprise who drew a line in the sand and their updated logo was a signal to the would-be renters that they have the credentials to make their operating model a success.
B2B networking relationship building
Sourcing a third party to develop your new logo and/or web design can be a brilliant opening to a new network. Tapping into the services of a site like Yango Media can be the start of a fruitful relationship as their team tackles many of the challenges that fall into the social media rebranding exercise.
- Content strategy
- Digital consultancy
All of a sudden a start-up can score value for money as they leverage a back catalogue of clientele and find avenues where partnerships and connections are taking place organically.
This facet of the rebranding phase can be a genuine boost to your backlink profile. There is usually more strategy to the co-branding or brand-to-brand affiliations that occur such as the Amazon and IMDb link up, but the mere transaction can be cause to promote each other’s status on social media.
B2B marketing is a niche all unto itself and comes attached with its own merits on social media. What is abundantly clear is that the need to deliver an updated image opens up opportunities to establish networks with businesses, a tie-in that helps to spread external links and boost traffic scores.
Tap into market trends
Trending topics are a major facet of social media platforms. Whether they are found through hashtags or general news stories that are dominating the timelines and feeds of users, it is simple to see what people are talking about in the digital sphere.
In many respects this field is a short-term outlet where stories are thrown out as quickly as they appear, but it is also a chance for brands to gauge what matters to a particular constituency of people – namely the consumer base at large.
One case study that speaks to this development is the beer brand Stella Artois. Having their name unfortunately associated with football hooligans in the UK, the name was synonymous with a binge drinking culture that had erupted, a point that is all too common with Sydney nightlife.
In an environment of lockout laws where social norms are trending away from old traditional beer brands, Stella Artois repackaged themselves on social media. They have since broadcast their name to be associated as the beer choice for lower alcohol content and to promote their vintage Belgian heritage.
Nothing has actually changed about Stella Artois beer. It is exactly the same product while they were encountering their PR nightmare. What they managed to successfully engineer was an acknowledgement of trending behaviours, particularly when it came to the widespread backlash of binge drinking culture.
Should your brand have a savvy operator onboard who can identify how your brand can tie-in to a cultural norm, then utilise that talent and execute a rebranding that works.
Content through announcements
The basic exercise in isolation of informing and promoting the rebrand is a content-making machine, a tangible asset that helps Google accelerate your ranking. Once you have undergone the process of accessing a new logo, a new design, a new slogan and anything else that needs updating, the trick then is to promote that as far and wide as possible.
Engage each and every account you have:
There are multiple avenues you can take, from an email marketing campaign to pay-per click advertisements and guest writing posts on blogs or magazines that gets the message out there.
This strategy will boost optimisation because the broadcast will come attached with all of the prerequisite requirements to help visibility. From keywords to URL integration and meta tags, rebranding is an ideal way tick the SEO boxes as you satisfy Google’s need to feed off fresh content.
Reset brand reputation
There is a belief out there through a series of case studies that argues social media is a ‘make or break’ indicator for a brand’s reputation. It is a window into a number of vital elements that will tell the consumer some hard-hitting facts about the operation at hand:
- What value do you provide?
- Do you stand out from the competition?
- How do you deal with customer concerns?
- How quickly do you respond to feedback, questions and criticism?
- Are you providing a product or service in the market that is not already being met?
The end user can find much of this information courtesy of their own individual experience. What is not being said in this instance is just as poignant as what is being said, giving an illustration as to the company’s priorities.
From an optimisation point of view, a brand reputation carries a certain degree of baggage. Previous indiscretions are kept on file as search engines reflect the perception of the wider pubic at large.
The intangible of the “brand reputation” offers the opportunity of a complete reset – a do over that allows the organisation a chance to reboot and regain the trust of the users who might have ventured to a different service.
The brand reputation is the culmination of all of the elements that forms an optimisation strategy. It incorporates the bounce rate, the keyword efficiency, the backlink volume, social media mentions and everything that contributes to a Google ranking.
Hitting the reset button can be the best tonic.
How to reband on social media platforms
So we have outlined the SEO benefits for rebranding your social media accounts, but how is this best achieved? There are a few steps for each individual platform, but the most basic can be found through a fairly direct path.
- Head to the ‘Settings and privacy’ tab
- Update the username
- Head to the ‘About’ section on the page
- Next to ‘Name’ and ‘Username’ opt for ‘Edit’
- Change each option accordingly
- Head to the ‘Edit Profile’ tab
- Change username and photo accordingly
This platform is slightly trickier when it comes to rebranding. The best option in this instance is to create a brand new page and request a follower migration to LinkedIn explaining the details of the rebranding exercise and that the old page will no longer need to be in use.
Should a new and improved website be part of the rebranding equation, then that URL needs to be placed in your profile tab. Search engines require consistency across the board for their crawlers to develop a network and link between your pages, so the more prevalent the new URL becomes in the social sphere, the greater the search engine performance.
The reality is that any rebranding has to be consistent across the board, from the Facebook page to the Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn accounts. A break in that process will hurt SEO performance with search engine crawlers requiring repeated signals in order to establish a pattern of behaviour and rank your brand correctly.
Follow that practice and the brand reboot should be a genuine success.
Kieran is the Social Media Manager and SEO Expert at SEO Shark. He is an expert in Social Media, link building, PPC and of course SEO. In his time off work Kieran enjoys reading and playing rugby, as well as following all kinds of sports! You can read some more of his articles here.