Lessons we learned from a pandemic rebrand

The first lockdown was hard for us, like it was for a lot of people. Our world was turned upside down, and to say things were a little bit dicey would definitely be fair. We did what we always do when we’re met with difficulty; headed to the forest and we talked it out. We talked about what we might do, shared our concerns and planned for the future. It was all we could do. In the course of our chat, the idea of a rebrand surfaced unexpectedly. It’s something we’d talked about years ago, but had pushed to the backs of our minds, so it was kind of a surprise for it to be popping up again. Now, it seemed like a good idea. No, not a good idea, a great idea. We were in an unprecedented time, why not take an unprecedented risk and change everything up? So that’s what we did.

It may have seemed crazy at the time, but a total rebrand in the middle of a global pandemic is actually the best idea we’ve ever had. Was it stressful? Yes. Did we learn anything? Plenty. If we had to do it all again, would we? Absolutely. We are thrilled with what the rebrand did for us, but that’s not to say that it came without its frustrations and lessons learned. This was our first (and last) rebrand, and there are things that we’ve learned from the experience that we’ll be taking forward with us.

If nothing else, this is the most important lesson that we took out of our rebrand. There are just some things in life that you feel really strongly about, but they just seem too difficult to accomplish. It’s only human to be confronted by these challenges and think better of taking them on. But, every time we do that, we’re basically closing the door on a potentially exciting opportunity. That’s not to say that every one of these challenges leads to something rewarding, but you’ll never find out if you don’t try. On paper, the timing of the rebrand was horrendous. The potential consequences could have ruined us, and, with the challenging economic climate, we could have disappeared altogether. 8 years of work gone. That didn’t happen though. Instead, we’re actually in a better place, and our identity is now the right fit for who we are as people and as a business. In fact, we’re doing things with our new business that we never would have felt confident enough to do before. We’re achieving things we only could have dreamed of, and, from our point of view, the identity is driving that. If we had listened to our logical brains, and laid out all the ways this could have gone wrong, we never would have started this journey. That would have been a huge mistake. 

We’ve always had strong ideas on what our values are, who we want to help and the kinds of projects that we can bring value to. We always knew these things, but they weren’t always at the front and centre. Our values were impacting our work, but we weren’t using them to connect with our clients. We always felt that they were a point of difference, something that we were proud of, and yet we weren’t very public about them. What that meant was that for people who valued the same things as we do, they weren’t seeing that. They weren’t connecting with us on a deeper level, and it was becoming purely about the service that we offer. We are more than just a video company, but we weren’t showing people that.

After the rebrand, we’re doing much better with that, especially at a time when connection is more important than ever. As soon as we put our values at the centre of what we did, we were able to form better connections with our ideal clients. We were able to have deeper conversations, to show that we shared the same values and that we understood the people we were working with. It’s been a huge step forward for us, and it’s highlighted just how important it is to have a consistent brand story and identity.

We could not have done this alone. We don’t the skills to do it, and that’s okay. There are tonnes of talented people out there who do this stuff day in and day out, and it made complete sense to work with them. The team we worked with (Fhoke) were amazing, and they brought this project to life in a way that we never could. The money that we spent to work with Fhoke was far outweighed by the value and expertise that they brought to the table. It was hands down the best money that we’ve ever spent. The experience of rebranding has reminded us that sometimes the best thing to do is to speak to and work with experts. Who knows what will come up in the future, but now we will be even more open to collaborating and working with external experts.

We’d been Broken Physics for so many years, that it kind of felt that it would always be our identity. Even though it wasn’t right for us we stuck by it because it was all that we knew. Looking back on it, that was a silly reason to keep going with that identity. Frankly, it did more harm than good, and a change of identity was much needed. The results have been astounding, and that’s gotten us thinking that maybe there are other areas where this might need to happen? We haven’t found any yet, but we feel good about constantly looking for them. We now assess our business and practices more regularly, and make sure that we’re staying true to ourselves and to our clients and collaborators. If we find a process or way of doing things that doesn’t work, we now feel much better about scrapping or changing it. No idea is ever worth holding onto just because it’s become the status quo.

Final thoughts

Our rebrand was a rollercoaster ride to say the least. We chose to do it at potentially the worst possible time and there were moments of doubt and worry. We’ve come out the other side though, and we’re a stronger, better company as a result. We are more in touch with our true identity, and doing things in the way that suit who we are as people and as professionals. We have always been unique, now we’re letting the world know that and reaping the benefits. Since changing our identity, not only have we been able to connect better with the right people, we’ve been able to take on different projects and even hired an animator to expand our company. In the short time we’ve been NOTW it feels like we’ve already achieved more than we did as Broken Physics, and we’re only just getting started. We can’t say for sure, but if we didn’t take that leap, we might not have been where we are today.

We’re always happy to chat and share our experiences. If you’re going through a rebrand and want to talk it over, drop us an email. We’d be more than happy to help in any way we can.

Wanna know more about our rebrand? You can read all about it here.

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