How & when to rebrand a medical business
Rebranding is more than just a new logo. It’s developing an entirely new brand identity. Learn when to rebrand and how to do it effectively.
How & when to rebrand a medical business
Although there are many potential gains, rebranding also carries considerable risks. It may either advance your medical business through market expansion and business development or, in the worst-case scenario, contribute to the failure of your business. With the accelerating digitalization and coming generation of digital doctors and patients, a new, unique brand identity may be crucial for your business to grow. The only question is, at which point should you actually decide to rebrand? Read the article to learn how and when to complete a rebranding for your medical business.
What is rebranding?
The recent metamorphosis of Pfizer perfectly illustrates the idea of rebranding. After 70 years on the market, Pfizer has decided to replace their old pill logo with a double helix inspired by DNA structure . According to Pfizer's CEO, this transformation was prompted by a “new era” for the organization.
Although the rebranding of Pfizer reflects the brand’s new vision, it stays true to the unique nature of Pfizer that always went with the times and beyond commerce. In order to adapt to the new digital environment and marketing goals, renewed logo and design were accompanied by a refreshed website.
When to rebrand?
When the whole world had its eyes on Pfizer during the race to develop a Covid-19 vaccine, Pfizer decided to seize the moment and go with the times by conducting an extensive rebranding. Given that Pfizer views itself as something more than just a healthcare giant, the company aimed to change its perception and show the public that scientific innovation, vaccines, prescription drug development, and, consequently, patients’ well-being are their primary focuses. By leveraging its forthcoming peak of popularity brought by the introduction of the Covid-19 vaccine, the company turned to the future and decided to rebrand.
Pfizer’s example is one of many famous rebrandings in the healthcare sector. When should I know that my medical company needs to be rebranded?
Firstly, as Pfizer has demonstrated, you need a good reason to rebrand. If your audience has changed, the competitive market has quickly evolved, or your mission has pivoted over the years, it may be high time to consider rebranding your medical business.
#1 You’ve lost touch with your audience
In the digital age, the preferences of healthcare recipients are continuously evolving. This might be one of the reasons behind your loss of touch with the target audience. Likewise, your audience might have switched their interests due to the new digital trends and technology.
Whatever the reason is, it is crucial to know your audience perfectly, recognize a shift in the market, and stay agile when it’s time to revisit your brand’s touchpoints.
#2 You need brand restoration
Maybe your organization has been in the healthcare market for a long time. If so, your 2000s color palette may be dragging your brand down by making your business look outdated.
The other case refers to the brand’s maturity. It is quite frequent that a company launches a product or service without a thoughtful brand strategy or prior audience research since these are its first steps on the market. However, as your company grows, obtaining new customers, you may realize the brand has gotten out of your hand. At the end of the day, your brand is always shaped by your consumer’s brand experience. Acknowledging that you lost your relevance is the first step toward a successful rebranding project.
Your brand is shaped by the consumer’s experience.
#3 The market has evolved
The healthcare industry doesn’t stay still. With the expanding digitalization, the introduction of new technologies, and changing audience preferences caused by Covid-19, you may need to reconsider your brand’s position in the competitive landscape. When the entire industry is moving toward digital, you have to notice the point when your brand must go with the times (and the market) and refresh its philosophy, mission, and values. In other words, you have to conduct a rebranding.
#4 Your company underwent a merger or acquisition
When two organizations come together, two brands come together as well. In other words, merging or acquiring cannot simply mean taking over one’s identity. Building a new personality that reflects the new value will undoubtedly prevent confusion and build trust among your healthcare target audience.
#5 You’ve gone international
Market expansion is a key step in your business growth. Thus, it has to be conducted with due diligence. If expanding to international markets, consider whether your brand will harmonize with non-local perceptions. Recalling some of the many potential challenges - the name of your business may be too limiting, or your logo bears a resemblance to your competitors' logos. Facing any of these, you’ll need to change your brand image to turn your business around and accelerate growth.
#6 Your company’s mission has changed
This last good reason to rebrand your business is the ultimate result of the previous arguments. Whether your audience is evolving, the market is growing, or the digital landscape is changing, the mission of your organization will undoubtedly change.
Your business’s mission and philosophy should govern every decision you make. When the environment is transforming, consider a new identity for your medical company.
How to rebrand?
#1 Know why you rebrand and research
Once you find a compelling reason to rebrand, it is essential to consider all aspects, as it may be more complex than it seems at first glance. For instance, if you decided to rebrand because your audience has changed, scrutinize what propelled the change, what are its current needs and interests, as well as how it affected your business.
We recommend that you conduct an in-depth analysis of your audience, competitive market, and industry-focused trends. However, you should also consider digital trends outside the healthcare market as this will allow you to obtain a broader understanding of your audience’s present perceptions.
Know who you’re for
Rebranding is all about developing a new, unique identity and, thus, changing your brand's perception. However, first, we have to begin by understanding your current audience.
Ultimately, the true test of your rebranding is simple: Does it resonate with your audience or not?
#2 Redefine your company’s mission and values
Extensive research is crucial in every sphere of the healthcare market. Not only in medical content creation, where in-depth scientific research is paramount but also in the case of your rebranding project.
In essence, the more knowledge you gain, the better the rebranding strategy will be. Thus, before you start rebranding, you need to understand the current perception of your brand. An extensive brand audit will help you dig deeper into your organization, demonstrating where you are now and what are your future directions.
Begin by asking yourself three key questions:
Brandmed tip: You may also need a platform audit, as rebranding often follows significant changes on your corporate website.
Once you’ve completed your brand audit, you should know what areas need to be improved or completely transformed. Moreover, brand audit leads you directly to the essence, thus to the recognition of your brand’s values, mission, and vision.
Here are some questions that can help you get there:
- What’s our value proposition?
- What makes us different from competitors?
- What’s our mission?
- What are our core values or beliefs?
- What’s our personality?
- Where do we come from?
- Where are we headed?
#3 Choose the team & the scope of work
When you’ve acquired complex knowledge about both the current state of your brand and your new mission, define the scope of your rebranding.
Some businesses may need a full-scope transformation that includes a complete redesign of a platform or/and an entirely new content marketing strategy. The profound transformation of Remedium - a digital hub for the medical community, which Brandmed conducted recently, perfectly illustrates the example of complete rebranding.
Once you’ve narrowed down the scope of the project, identify your team resources. If you opt for a total rebranding, it is a complex process requiring a diverse team that has broad knowledge and experience not only in the healthcare market but also in design, marketing, and development. When it comes to finding the right people, you may consider two options:
- Stay in-house
- Go outsource
#4 Rebuilt your brand identity
Renaming your business
Changing your name is a big undertaking. Your customers have gotten to know your name, and now they’re asked to change the way they talk and think about you.
Generally speaking, if your name still fits your brand, there’s no need to change it, as in Pfizer’s case. However, sometimes, it will be an inevitable step in your rebranding process.
Rebuild your brand's visual identity
After completing an extensive process of your brand’s fundamentals, it is time to extend your messaging into the visual identity. It usually comprises a logo, color palette, typography, and imagery.
A well-designed logo is a crucial component of any rebranding strategy for the healthcare industry. In fact, there are as many approaches to logo design as there are designers.
However, what we’d recommend you is to start by browsing medical logo designs from all areas of the industry. Once you notice an existing pattern, run your imagination wild while returning to the essence - your mission, vision, and values.
- Color palette
As we know, this industry has its own rights. It also refers to the choice of a color palette. Nevertheless, it is your responsibility to decide if you want to maintain or adopt a medical blue, a dominant color in the healthcare industry reflecting credibility, trust, knowledge, and purity. The other solution is to experiment and find new effective combinations of the whole range of colors.
Font expresses the nature of your industry. Simplicity and cleanliness are frequently the core factors in this sector. For instance, typography that is too vivid and rampant won’t gain trust among your target audience of patients.
Your visual identity is not only logo and colors but also all the imagery that accompanies your brand. Essentially, imagery is a visual story-telling component of your business, as it mostly involves pictures.
Brand imagery is used on your website, in your social media communications, and in a plethora of different kinds of marketing materials. Thus, it has to be impeccable to make your visual message clear and strong. Try to go outside of the box and think not only about the content itself but also about the forms. For instance, when we were building Remedium’s imagery, we relied on 3D illustrations that are particularly useful in enhancing the visual message.
#5 Plan a successful launch
Launching your new brand is the last step of a complex journey that you’ve gone through. It is the perfect moment to tell your audience who you are now, what you are about, and why you rebranded.
In a nutshell, know your reason to rebrand, own your story, and tell it with success.
Where to start?
Rebranding is so much more than just a new logo. To conduct a successful rebranding, not only do you need to create a new, powerful brand identity but also complete all the steps that both proceed and follow the design process itself.
Understand the importance of extensive research, consider the scope of your rebranding, and choose the team that can help you achieve your business goals. We’re here to help you. Brandmed is a diverse team of creative designers, committed marketers, skillful developers, and experienced healthcare professionals who will lead you through the complete process – from scratch to your successful refreshed product launch. Contact us! Shall we start?
- Logarytm, Pfizer z nowym DNA logo, https://logarytm.com.pl/aktualnosci/pfizer-z-nowym-dna-logo/ [last accessed: 15.11.2022].