New Look, New Year, Fresh Perspective
PMG (Professional Marketing Group-North Bay) recently launched a rebrand that kicks-off a new trajectory for the organization. The brand refresh was inspired by the evolution of the group, which began in 2011 as a networking and social group, and progressed into offering educational and professional development opportunities for its membership and beyond.
After review by the 2019-2020 Board (and the feedback of our membership), we determined that PMG needed a rebrand to better reflect the group as a professional resource for regional marketers.
Beyond a new logo and brand messaging, in 2020, we will launch a new website, update our marketing channels, and hope to inspire existing and potential membership with an invigorated new look.
OUR REBRAND STRATEGY
The majority of our membership work as in-house marketers for regional businesses. If your team has been considering a rebrand, we thought it might be helpful to share how we embraced this task.
A solid rebrand should always begin with a Discovery Phase. For PMG, this included the following:
- Audience: Determine the target PMG demographic.
- Membership Audit: Review current membership, and determine who/what the majority of our membership is and how that aligns with our target demographic.
- Targets: Identify potential members and sponsors to pursue.
- Drivers: Determine what drives and engages our members.
We determined that our primary audience is:
- Marketing Managers that work for larger businesses
- Team members of in-house marketing departments
- Small business owners or freelancers
Identifying the competition is key for any rebrand—and it may continually change. For PMG, competitors are other regional professional groups vying for the time and/or availability of potential members. We looked at several regional groups to determine where we are similar, and what, if anything, makes us unique in comparison—and how we should be highlighting those virtues.
Education and professional development are PMG’s primary differentiator from other groups, as most other professional groups focus on networking versus education. We determined that we hosting fewer mixers (based on turnout for such events) and replacing them with educational workshops throughout the year, would better serve our membership.
Evaluating current collateral and brand messaging is essential to a rebranding effort. We reviewed the following areas to see what needed improvement, overhaul or deletion. We made determinations on the following:
- Channels: What channels do we take advantage of? Which ones need improvement, and what processes needs improving? Which need to be added or deleted? Who is responsible for these channels? Are we utilizing them properly?
- Messaging: Is it consistent with the brand and across all channels? Does it align with the core value of the group?
- Perceptions: What is the general perception? We surveyed several members to determine the overall perception. This helped us to determine what needed improvement and where.
Our tagline remains: Educate. Connect. Inspire.
We have evolved beyond the old brand, and we are: Professional, bold, smart, fun, energetic, and modern.
Brand Driver Discovery
With our updated brand direction in mind, we were able to determine the basic drivers of our target audience:
- I get to learn more about marketing.
- I get to meet marketers, increase my visibility, and gain a larger network.
- I’m able to make more money with a larger network and increased education while potentially advancing my career.
- I’m able to meet potential business, whether it be customers, partners, or employers.
- PMG saves me time and money by being easily accessible and local. I don’t have to drive to San Francisco or pay for online classes for education.
- I feel more qualified and secure in my field.
- I feel more relevant, confident, and empowered in my career. PMG makes me energized and excited for my job.
- I enjoy having personal relationships with like-minded people in my industry.
- My network, employer, and coworkers know I stay up to date with the latest trends.
- My network believes I’m professional and qualified in my field.
- My network knows I’m constantly growing and passionate about my field.
Based on the findings of the Discovery Phase, the rebranding committee developed four visual concepts for the rebranded logo and tagline.
The initial concepts took a unique, modern and professional spin on our logo; each version intentionally varied only slightly. The “M” in PMG was set as the focal point for each, to imply “marketing” as the group’s foundation. We removed “North Bay” and added the new tagline to evoke a sense of purpose.
The design committee then provided mockups of the concepts in action on email templates, name tags, etc., for the Board of Directors to review.
Concepts were shared with the Board. Each member was asked to provide first impressions to the design committee. We then reviewed the overall consensus with the group. A few more rounds of revisions took place, and were able to determine a finalize the rebrand design:
PMG now has a style sheet to follow for all future board members, and for PMG marketing materials and collateral, both digital and print. This will provide design consistency across all channels and help to minimize confusion and work, over time.
The rebrand process, while labor intensive, is deeply helpful to any team. The discoveries made through a rebrand can reinvigorate your team and breathe new life into a brand.
We hope that walking you through our rebrand process reminds you that your company or brand is an ever-evolving entity that should learn and grow over time. If you have questions or comments on PMG’s rebrand, contact us — we’d love to hear from you.
After 12-24 months after the rebrand, we will have gathered enough data to assess the efficacy of the rebranding effort, and make adjustments if needed.
We hope you like the new look of PMG, and look forward to seeing you throughout 2020!
— The PMG Board