To improve branding functionality
|Driving purposes||Communication goals|
Names can be simply ineffectual... not necessarily misleading or limiting or outgrown, just weak as a name... too long, too boring, initials no one but insiders care about.Name weakness
Increase name impact & recall
Many company names are simply boring and forgettable, too long, or perhaps previously reduced to weak and unappealing initials. A new name, more distinctive and functional, might give them new life.
Name confusion occurs one company can too easily be confused with another because the names are too similar, or even shared. (This often happens when companies split or spin out units, but continue to share the old communicative name.)Name confusion
Increase name differentiation
Name confusion most often occurs when companies have divided yet attempt to retain a common name, or expand geographically and confront overly similar names.
Weak design is often a good second reason for rebranding, and is sometimes the primary reason.Design weakness
Increase visual strength/quality
A brandmark can be so poorly designed as to be disfunctional ... for example difficult to reproduce legibly, difficult to apply in critical media, meaningless or unrecognizable in one-color (b&w) media or in reverse, overly space-consuming or simply too generic.
Rarely, an advertising idea is so successful that it comes to dominate the brand's identity. In this case it is often simply functional to rebrand, in order to incorporate the successful element.
Michelin... M. Bibendum
A strong advertising idea can make an existing logo ineffectual, effectively obsolete, setting up the opportunity to realign the brand with its new image. Examples: the duck in Aflac's logo; the hands in the Allstate Insurance logo, from "You're in good hands with Allstate" slogan.Incorporate the advertising element
Fortunately it is rare -- a lawsuit or an antitrust action can require change that in turn requires rebranding.Legal requirement
Retain or transfer brand equities
When a rebranding is legally mandated (an antitrust divestiture, for example), quite often the goal is to retain association to the prior brand while establishing separation.