Social Media vs. Rebranding: How to Make it Less Painful / Social Media / Last Modified: February 22, 2017

How do you rebrand your social media identity with as little pain as possible? Serious tips inside

In most cases, rebranding is really the last resort a business would turn to but sometimes there's no way to do without it.

It could be due to expanding your business beyond the narrow niche your current brand name reflects.

Or it could be due to a huge reputation management crisis which is something that has become very common in the era when one tweet can ruin one's whole life.

A single event or mistake can have lasting consequences. Sometimes it isn't even your mistake, but you are caught in the crossfire.

When that happens, rebranding can be your best option.

Related Article: Email Marketing: 6 Growth Hacks for Building Your Email List in 2016

While there is plenty to think about when this becomes the case, one issue is more important than you may realize: social media. The Internet is often described as being "forever". People don't forget, and search engines certainly don't either.

Social Media Rebranding Checklist

Avoid common mistakes rather than fixing them. Re-branding is already hard enough. Let's try make it easier.

Check Knowem to make sure your new brand name is available on major social media networks and register most of them right away (except for Twitter: Read below)

Facebook page: If your old Facebook page had "username" enabled, you are in bad luck: You cannot change it. You may have to start a new Facebook page if you want to have your new brand name in the URL.

Twitter actually lets you rename your current Twitter to change your @handle. This will preserve all your current followers and redirect mentions and lists.

Make sure you lock your old username as well and post a tweet announcing where to find you now (for those followers who'll type your old Twitter URL in the browser address bar).

To make your new social media profiles seachable, make sure to mention your old brand name in the description field in [Your new name, formerly known as your old name] format.

Come up with new social media graphics to reflect the new brand name (here's a good tool for that).

Make sure your site links to the new social media profiles.

Post an update on each social media network (new and old ones) announcing your rebrand.

Related Article: Logo Remixes: Are These Big Brand Logo Changes Hits or Misses?

Set up a separate social media dashboard to monitor both your old and your new brand names. I use Cyfe for that because it allows you to set a separate dashboard for each specific case, so you can get more organized:

Twitter screenshot of searches and results

How Do You Rebrand Socially With as Little Pain as Possible?

  • Remember you are changing your whole image. Take the time to consider what image your rebrand is going to cultivate. This should influence your social strategy in a big way. From the look, to the platform you use, it all has to be taken into account.
  • Hype it up. You audience is struggling under the reputation you used to have. It is time to introduce them to the new you. Which means hyping it all up, and making them eager for the changes. Let them know ahead of time, and offer sneak peaks prior to pulling the trigger. Make sure to announce your new social media profiles in the newsletter.
  • Offer something free. Incentivizing your new page is a great way to get people interested again. It is also a common tactic for drawing new eyes to your page. Try holding a giveaway, giving freebies, providing coupon codes, etc. Then further incentivize by offering more chances the more people they share with. Here are plenty of ideas to create buzz while growing engagement with your new brand name.
  • Become a storyteller. You need to move the topic away from your reasons behind rebranding. Instead, you want to become a storyteller that tells the story you want people to know. Use your social profiles to build and consistently tell that story. Add to it as you go along. Keep people updated, so they feel like they are a part of the story. Be inspiring.
  • Don't give up You will probably find that social growth is slower the second time around. Don't give up on your efforts. Be patient and consistent, engaging regularly and updating every day. It will take time, but it will pay off.

Related Article: The Name Game: Strategies for Naming a Company and Picking a Website

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