The moment is finally here… the official launch date of your new custom brand has been set, and you couldn’t be more excited! Cue the confetti and Champagne! You want to share the great news with your email list, blast it across IG, and maybe even tell some random strangers while they’re out walking their dogs. (If you’re in my neighborhood, Panda and I would be happy to stop and listen!)
But wait… is there a “right” way to launch a custom brand? Should you share teasers leading up to the official date? Should you transition toward your new brand gradually or have one show-stopping unveiling? And how does this whole “launch” thing even work??
While I think the approach can vary from brand to brand, I do have some juicy tips for you. Whether you’re a ByAriel client prepping for the big day, or you haven’t started your branding journey just yet, here’s what I suggest…
Tip 01. Pick a launch strategy
Not every business needs a big launch full of fanfare. Actually, I would say that most don’t. A bigger launch is best for brands who are either launching for the first time or changing/adding products or services with the rebrand.
In this case, a little fanfare builds anticipation, and Tip 02 and Tip 03 can help you with shifting your messaging and teasing out some of the new visuals as you have them. You can start this process months in advance by mentioning your upcoming launch every couple weeks or so, then doing so more frequently as the big day nears. (The IG Stories countdown feature is a fun one for this!)
If your business is getting a makeover and upgrade without launching new services, I don’t think you need to make your launch a drawn-out thing. Use the advice in Tip 02, touch on Tip 03 if you want to, but don’t feel pressured to create buzz months in advance. Then, launch your brand on the big day and own it like you’ve been this fabulous all along!
Tip 02. Start with your messaging
If you work with us, we will create a Brand Carryall for your business before we ever start working on your brand’s design. Your Brand Carryall is a collection of strategy, market positioning, and brand messaging. It identifies your audience’s biggest struggles, shows you how to relate to their pain, and helps you position yourself as the ah-mazing tool they can use to solve their problems…
Having this information early on makes it a great place for you to start transitioning your existing audience toward that new brand!
Even if your brand launch is months away, you can start addressing those problems right away in your marketing copy — in newsletters, social media posts, blog posts, even a website copy touch-up. You don’t even need to mention the upcoming brand launch. Just relate to their problems and show your empathy and passion for solving them.
This gradual shift in brand messaging can have great benefits:
- If your new brand pivots from the previous one, adapting your messaging early on can help your audience make that transition with you. When your launch date arrives, instead of it feeling like a sharp left turn, the transition will be seamless and natural.
- If you will be launching new products or services with your brand, this lead-up in messaging can prime your audience! Connect with those pain points, make your audience feel heard, and promise them a solution to come. When you launch, they will not only be ready for your solution, they’ll trust that it was created with care.
Your Brand Carryall is such a helpful tool in your ongoing content and marketing efforts — use it before, during, and after your launch! More on this in Tip 05…
Tip 03. Tease out the visual elements of your brand
I love the idea of teasing elements out… whether that be your new logo or a more elusive brand element, such as a custom pattern, submark, etc. You will have your logo to share early on, and we usually finalize the rest of your graphic elements around the same time that we finish your website or collateral design.
If you’re planning a big launch, give yourself an extra month to share these elements and sneak peeks of the new website. If you’re not planning a big launch but you do like the idea of sharing a teaser, you can share with your audience a week or two in advance.
On your social feeds you can do the same — tease out elements and start making the transition to your final destination. Or, if you want to wait until everything is officially ready and make a clear transition, that’s okay, too. There’s no right or wrong way. You choose!
Tip 04. Put all brand elements in place pre-launch
It can be tempting to launch your new brand as soon as your website is done, but if you haven’t rebranded all aspects of your business to match, I strongly suggest waiting. Think about it like this…
You’re at home getting all dressed up for date night. You put on a stylish dress and a cute jacket. You put some extra effort into your hair, makeup, and accessories. Spritz your favorite Hermès parfum. But on your way out… you reach for a pair of your oldest, most worn-out sneakers. Noooo, don’t do it!!! (Now that was a close one, right?)
In fashion, one wrong item can ruin the whole look, and the same is true for your brand. When old branding and design elements still hang around, they drag down the whole look and can even devalue the beautiful custom brand we’ve created.
Fortunately, this is easily avoidable — just make sure that all of your branding is ready to go when you launch. We can help.
If there are larger pieces of your brand that play a key role in how you engage with your audience/customers or client-base, such as opt-ins, services or product packets, newsletters, onboarding materials, etc., we can design them for you or create a branded template that you or your team can customize on your own.
Tip 05. Launch that beautiful brand!
When it’s time to launch, launch it! This means making the website live (of course) and sharing the official news across your various channels — in a newsletter to your mailing list or client list, in posts or live videos across social media.
When you’re launching your brand, the best thing to remember is that rebrands are more exciting for you as the business owner than for your audience. Your audience cares less about your new color palette and more about what’s in it for them.
Think about it — we’re all exposed to a variety of different brands day in and day out. What makes you stop your scroll and pay attention? Or actually read an email? How about a story you can relate to? Someone doing something different or interesting? Someone who understands you and your struggles?
Those are the things you want to touch on when launching your brand. Here are a few questions to help you craft this message… reference your Brand Carryall when answering!
- What is your “why” or your mission behind this business?
- Why are you the best person to lead this mission?
- Who are you, what do you do, and who do you do it for?
- Why did you decide to rebrand? How will it create an even better experience for your customer/client?
- Why should your audience care about these changes? What’s in it for them?
- What insights or intentions were brought to light in the rebrand process?
What’s Next? Keeping Your Brand Lookin’ Fab
Launching your custom brand is just the beginning. It needs love and care to stay its fabulous self! Think back to your first car. Unless you were really lucky, it was probably used, maybe a little dented around the edges, and got you from A to B without too much hassle. That’s like your old brand.
But now, you have a new car… and it’s a nice one. You invested in it, and you want it to last. All of a sudden, washing your car has become a normal part of your life. You stop eating in it. You regularly throw away your trash. You don’t park it under the trees that you know drip sap, even if you have to walk a bit farther. You care. You maintain it.
The same can be said for your new brand. You have to take care of it differently than the old one. This is where your Brand Carryall and Brand Style Guide can help.
These show you how to talk about your brand, speak to your audience, and how to use your various design elements and be choosy with the images you select for future content (like blog posts, newsletters, social media, etc.). Check in on your copy/imagery routinely to make sure everything is still aligned with your brand. Use your best judgment and trust your gut — your eyes can usually spot an image that’s not like the others. 🙂
And that’s it! You’re now a pro at launching your brand and keeping it sparkly new long into the future. And if you ever need a brand update down the road — you know, as you’re crushing goals, evolving, and bursting through glass ceilings — we’re here for you, friend.
P.S. Don’t have a brand you’re proud of just yet? Talk to us!