Rebranding an Agency – Interview with Kevin Gibbons

Kevin Gibbons co-founder of BlueGlass, now Re:signal is the upcoming sponsor for the SearchLDN July event. I wanted to find out about the rebrand and the reasons as I had interviewed Kevin a few years ago about the growth of the company.

Why did you decide now to rebrand the company?

There were a number of reasons, most notably over the years we’ve changed who we are as an agency, and we really wanted a brand to reflect that positioning.

I’ve written in more depth about this here, but we came to the conclusion that we didn’t just want a fresh lick of paint – we saw this as an opportunity to re-invent ourselves and reflect our vision of who we are and where we’re going.

Resignal launch party

What different products do you offer now compared to back in 2013? (this might tie in with the reason for the rebrand).

I see it more as an evolution of search, of which we want to be at the forefront for our clients.

In 2012, we saw an opportunity in content marketing – which has worked very well for us and is a huge part of the work we do today.

Fast forward six years and the big thing that’s changed in search for me isn’t in the algorithms – it’s with people.

Search and human behaviours have changed rapidly, certainly in mobile / apps, but also with trends towards audio, voice and VR/AR…

That means our service offering needs to adapt/evolve in order to attract customers for our clients, in the way that they are looking to find them.

This means we’ve strengthened our skills in mobile optimisation (which of course you have to with a mobile first index), ASO, featured snippets and voice search.

Our plan is to continue learning and improving in the areas where people are searching.

Resignal party

What were the steps you took to start the rebrand (e.g. when did you first think about it to when it was live, who should be involved in the rebrand)

It’s been something we’ve considered for a while, and I’ve spoken to a number of other agency owners who have been through something similar before, plus this isn’t the first time for ourselves

The key things for me which helped us, were:

  • Don’t aim for 100% perfect – if we did this, we likely wouldn’t have launched this year. Instead our goal was to create the initial phase of a brand we’re proud to call our own, and then to get it out there and continually evolve / improve.
  • Have a target deadline, but be flexible on the details. I’ll often drive people mad internally because I won’t have a clear answer to when each milestone is going to be completed – it’s ready when it’s ready. But I always knew in my head I wanted to launch within 6 months and by the summer, traditionally a quieter period for agencies so that we can use any spare time on getting the brand launched and ready to go again for the rest of the year (and beyond).
  • Make sure you have someone on your team who can project manage. Our marketing assistant did a great job with keeping things moving forward, so that I didn’t become too much of a bottleneck. Plus organising some of the time consuming but important things, such as ordering new branded swag, organising a client launch party etc…
  • Involve the team for feedback, but lead it. Getting the team involved to show them how things are developing and asking for their feedback is really important to take on-board, but to do a re-brand I would suggest you need one key decision maker. Voting on names, colours, website details etc, normally dilutes your idea, rather than improves it – so being single minded in a vision for the brand has helped to provide clarity and direction to keep things moving forward.

Resignal redesign

How much resource should you recommend a company allocates to a rebrand and how much time?

If you have the budget, hire someone.

It always sounds backwards for an agency to hire an agency – but they bring specialist skills, an external mindset and there’s generally more accountability to be treated as a priority when it’s something you’re paying for.

Internal agency projects rarely work, because clients have to come first. Plus you’re too close to it yourself that the external perspective is extremely useful towards differentiating yourself.

For us, it took 6 months from an end of Jan start to end of July launch – this involved key milestones to define our identity, choose a new brand name and visualise what this would look like.

Plus we’ve always seen it as being a year of re-branding, we’re past the launch phase now but have plenty more left to come 🙂

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