23 / 06 / 14

Rebranding and the importance of colour

To remain effective and stay relevant with an ever changing world, it’s essential for Brands to be in a constant state of evolution and rejuvenation. Most good companies will at some point recognise the time has come to ‘Rebrand’ and so starts the ball rolling in the challenging and highly important design process.

The Rebranding process can either be 'Evolutionary' or 'Revolutionary'; subtle changes that refreshes and reinvigorates the business or a radical rethink and overhaul that leapfrogs the competitors or targets a different market.

Lennon Design recently reached that Rebrand milestone and started an inward looking process. Market forces did not dictate this move instead it seemed a natural time to look again and refocus, coinciding with a recent move to our new studio. However we still looked at the challenge as if we were working for a client and asked a number of probing questions:

Why are we doing a rebrand?
What problem are we attempting to solve?
Does our brand portray the company in the right way?
What do we want to say and to whom?
Has our customer profile changed?
Is our brand out of step? Are we outdated?
What are the strengths of the current identity?

The process was challenging and rewarding in equal measures, it was crucial to remain objective throughout. As well as the physical changes to the logo there was an overall simplification to the approach. We felt confident that lennondesign could be substituted by just LENNON. The soft rounded forms of the previous logotype had been replaced by strong modernist geometry and a single colour approach. Another important outcome from the process was the recognition of the equity we had built up over the years in that colour. Orange defined us, our clients recognised us by it, constantly remarking on our Orange feature wall and Orange retro phone etc. This colour was worth gold in terms of recognition value, setting us apart from our competitors and sending out positive signals to the world.

So what’s all the fuss Orange?

Here a few thoughts taken from variety of sources:

  • Orange combines the energy of red and the happiness of yellow
  • Associated with joy and sunshine
  • Represents enthusiasm, fascination, happiness, creativity, determination, attraction, success
  • Vivid but not as aggressive as red
  • Able to catch attention and highlight important elements of your design
  • Orange is the colour most easily seen in dim light or against the water, making it the safety colour of choice for life rafts, life jackets or buoys
  • It’s worn by people wanting to be seen, including road workers and lifeguards and let’s not forget prisoners!

For a lot of companies, like ourselves, colour has become an important identifier. Quite often, colours are how you recognise and associate products with a particular brand and are as universally identifiable as the company’s logo. It is most brands’ dream to ‘own’ a colour, within their own sector. Market research has found, believe it or not, that 80% of visual information retained is related to the colour. Not just any old red or green but Coca Cola Red or Starbucks Green. The Telecommunications giant Orange, uses the colour both in its logo and as the trademarked company name - simple and mind blowingly effective - wish I’d thought of it!

So yes a well chosen colour can be hugely important, sending out positive signals to the marketplace or hugely increasing the Brand recognition factor. When we’re working with our clients to create or refresh a brand, we look at the colour palette as a powerful tool in our arsenal.

Every ambitious company would love to ‘own’ a colour in their sector. However bear in mind that Brands can only ‘own’ customers associations with a particular colour to their Brand and not the colour itself.