Brand Repositioning: Transforming Your Brand’s Perception

In the dynamic world of business, staying relevant and responsive to changing market demands is paramount.

“Brand Repositioning” emerges as a strategic lifeline, allowing companies to recalibrate their image and value proposition to better resonate with evolving consumer expectations.

This article delves into the art and science of brand repositioning, exploring the catalysts behind this transformative journey and the strategies that empower brands to adapt, revitalize, and thrive in an ever-shifting landscape.

Join us on a journey of strategic evolution and discover how repositioning can breathe new life into your brand.

What Is Brand Repositioning?

Brand repositioning is a strategic marketing process where a company modifies the way customers perceive its brand in the market.

It often involves changing key brand elements like messaging, image, or target audience to adapt to evolving consumer preferences or competitive dynamics.

The goal is to create a more favorable and differentiated brand image, ultimately improving market competitiveness and increasing customer loyalty and sales.

Difference Between Brand Repositioning and Rebranding

AspectBrand RepositioningRebranding
DefinitionA strategic process of changing the perception or positioning of a brand in the market without changing its core identity.A comprehensive overhaul of a brand, including its name, logo, messaging, and sometimes even its core values and identity.
FocusPrimarily focuses on changing how the brand is perceived in the market while keeping its core values and identity intact.Focuses on completely transforming the brand’s identity, often including a new name, logo, and messaging, and may involve changes to core values and identity.
PurposeTo adapt to changes in the market, target audience, or competition by adjusting the brand’s image and positioning.To create a fresh start for the brand, address negative associations, or reposition the brand in a significantly different market or industry.
Extent of ChangeLimited changes to the existing brand elements, such as messaging, design, or target audience.Substantial changes that often involve a new name, logo, and a complete overhaul of the brand’s identity.
TimeframeTypically a less time-consuming process compared to rebranding, as it involves less extensive changes.Typically a more time-consuming process due to the need to develop and implement an entirely new brand identity.
CostGenerally more cost-effective compared to rebranding, as it involves fewer changes and resources.Often more expensive, as it may require creating new marketing materials, updating physical assets, and reestablishing brand recognition.
RiskLower risk, as it preserves the core identity of the brand and focuses on refining existing elements.Higher risk, as it involves a complete transformation of the brand, which can lead to the loss of existing customer recognition and trust.
ExamplesA car manufacturer highlighting its commitment to sustainability without changing its name or logo.A company completely changing its name, logo, and messaging to appeal to a younger audience in a different industry.

When Should You Consider Brand Repositioning?

Brand repositioning should be considered when your current brand strategy is no longer effective in meeting your business objectives.

Here are practical scenarios and signs that indicate it might be time to consider repositioning your brand:

  • Clear Objectives: Define specific and measurable objectives for the brand repositioning. What do you aim to achieve? Whether it’s increasing market share, targeting a new audience, or addressing a reputational issue, having clear goals is essential.
  • Market Research: Thoroughly research your target market, competitors, and industry trends. Understand your audience’s needs, preferences, and pain points. This research will inform your repositioning strategy.
  • Brand Identity: Reassess your brand’s identity, including values, mission, and messaging. Ensure that your new position aligns with your core values and resonates with your target audience.
  • Communication Strategy: Develop a comprehensive communication plan to introduce and explain the brand repositioning to your customers, employees, and stakeholders. Consistent and compelling messaging is crucial.
  • Internal Alignment: Ensure that everyone within your organization understands and supports the brand repositioning. Employee buy-in is essential to deliver the new brand promise consistently.
  • Measuring Success: Establish key performance indicators (KPIs) to track the success of your repositioning efforts. Regularly monitor and analyze these metrics to determine whether your objectives are being met.

Types Of Brand Repositioning Strategies

Brand repositioning is a strategic marketing process that involves changing the way a brand is perceived by its target audience.

It can be necessary for various reasons, such as shifting consumer preferences, entering new markets, or responding to competitive pressures.

Here are five types of brand repositioning strategies, each with its own approach and goals:

Market Repositioning

Market repositioning involves changing the target market segment for a brand. This can be driven by factors like evolving customer demographics or shifting market dynamics.

To execute market repositioning, a brand may adjust its marketing and product offerings to appeal to a different group of consumers.

For example, a luxury brand that traditionally targeted older customers might reposition itself to target a younger, more tech-savvy audience.

Product Repositioning

Product repositioning focuses on changing the way consumers perceive a brand’s products or services.

This can involve altering product features, quality, or pricing better to meet the needs and expectations of the target market.

For instance, a fast-food chain may reposition itself by offering healthier menu options to attract health-conscious consumers while retaining its core customer base.

Image Repositioning

Image repositioning is about changing the overall perception of a brand. This often entails a comprehensive overhaul of the brand’s messaging, visuals, and values.

It may involve a shift in brand personality, such as moving from a traditional and conservative image to a more innovative and modern one.

Companies like Apple have successfully executed image repositioning by evolving from a niche computer manufacturer to a global tech and lifestyle brand.

Price Repositioning

Price repositioning involves changing a brand’s pricing strategy to attract a different customer segment. Brands can opt to lower their prices to appeal to cost-conscious consumers or raise prices to position themselves as premium products.

A good example of price repositioning is Starbucks, which initially focused on premium coffee but later introduced lower-priced options to attract a broader customer base.

Competitive Repositioning

Competitive repositioning aims to differentiate a brand from its competitors. It often involves identifying a unique value proposition that sets the brand apart in a crowded market.

This strategy can be seen when brands highlight their sustainability practices, innovation, or customer service to distinguish themselves from competitors.

For instance, Patagonia has successfully positioned itself as a brand committed to environmental sustainability, setting itself apart from other outdoor clothing companies.

Steps For Successful Brand Repositioning

Step 1: Understand Your Current Position

Before you can reposition your brand, you need a clear understanding of its current position in the market. Conduct a thorough assessment of your brand’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT analysis).

This analysis should include a deep dive into your brand’s history, core values, target audience, and competitive landscape. You should also gather feedback from customers and stakeholders to gain insights into their perceptions and expectations.

Step 3: Identify Your New Positioning Strategy

Once you have a comprehensive understanding of your brand’s current position, you can start formulating a new positioning strategy.

This strategy should be aligned with your brand’s long-term goals and should take into account the changes in the market and consumer behavior.

Consider factors like product innovation, pricing, messaging, and target audience. Identify the unique value proposition that will set your brand apart from competitors.

Step 4: Realign Your Brand Message

Your brand’s messaging is a crucial component of repositioning. Your new positioning strategy should be reflected in all aspects of your brand communication, including your tagline, brand story, and marketing materials.

Ensure that the messaging is consistent and clear so consumers understand the changes you are making and why they should care.

Step 5: Update Brand Visuals

Visual elements play a significant role in brand repositioning. You may need to update your brand’s logo, colors, and visual identity to match the new positioning.

These elements should be aligned with the messaging and evoke the emotions and associations you want your brand to convey.

A professional designer can help ensure your brand visuals effectively communicate your repositioning strategy.

Step 6: Engage Your Team

Successful brand repositioning involves the entire organization, from top management to front-line staff.

Engage your team early in the process, ensuring they understand and support the new positioning strategy.

Provide training and resources to help employees embody the brand’s new identity. Their alignment with the repositioned brand is crucial for consistent customer experiences.

Step 7: Launch and Monitor the Repositioning

When you are ready to launch your repositioned brand, do so with a well-coordinated and integrated marketing campaign.

Utilize multiple channels, such as social media, advertising, public relations, and content marketing, to reach your target audience.

After the launch, continue to monitor the brand’s performance and gather feedback to assess the effectiveness of the repositioning. Be prepared to make adjustments if necessary.

Brand Repositioning Examples

Apple Inc.

Apple is a well-known example of a brand that successfully repositioned itself. In the early 2000s, the company was struggling and was often associated with niche markets.

However, with the introduction of the iPod, iPhone, and iPad, Apple shifted its image from a niche computer company to a global technology leader. The brand positioned itself as an innovator, focusing on sleek design, user-friendly interfaces, and cutting-edge technology.

This repositioning helped Apple become one of the most valuable and recognized brands globally.

Old Spice

Old Spice, a traditional brand of men’s grooming products, underwent a major repositioning in the early 2010s.

The brand was perceived as old-fashioned and was losing relevance among younger consumers. To change this, Old Spice launched a series of humorous and viral advertising campaigns featuring the “Old Spice Man” character.

These ads not only introduced a more modern and humorous image for the brand but also attracted a younger audience. As a result, Old Spice’s sales and brand perception improved significantly.


Harley-Davidson, a legendary motorcycle manufacturer, faced challenges in the 2010s due to shifting demographics and economic factors. To reach a new generation of riders, the company initiated a brand repositioning strategy.

They launched a line of electric motorcycles, like the LiveWire, to appeal to a more environmentally conscious and tech-savvy audience. This move represented a departure from their traditional cruiser-style bikes.

Harley-Davidson’s repositioning aimed to convey a message of innovation and a broader appeal, extending beyond its traditional customer base.


Burberry is a British luxury fashion brand that faced an image problem in the early 2000s when its signature plaid pattern was associated with counterfeit products and worn by individuals who didn’t reflect the brand’s luxury positioning.

To reposition themselves as a high-end fashion brand, they underwent a significant transformation. They redesigned their stores, updated their product lines, and enlisted the help of high-profile fashion designers like Christopher Bailey.

The brand successfully shifted its image to appeal to a younger, more fashionable clientele while retaining its classic British heritage.


McDonald’s, a global fast-food giant, undertook brand repositioning in response to changing consumer preferences for healthier food options.

They introduced a variety of salads, wraps, and fruit options to their menu and implemented a marketing campaign highlighting these healthier choices.

This repositioning aimed to address concerns about the nutritional value of their offerings and to cater to a more health-conscious customer base.


In conclusion, brand repositioning is a strategic imperative for businesses seeking to adapt, grow, and stay relevant in a dynamic market.

By redefining their identity and resonating with evolving consumer needs, brands can revitalize their image and secure a stronger foothold in the competitive landscape.

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