by Jonathan Lansner, Staff Columnist
So who do the branding gurus use when they need a brand makeover?
In the case of a marketing shop from Irvine, they performed the corporate identity overhaul on themselves.
So as of today, say goodbye to RiechesBaird. Say hello to BrandingBusiness.
The road to a new identity was a roughly 18-month journey that company insiders say was based on the same premise as they’d use on any client: What is the new corporate strategy and how would a new identity amplify that metamorphosis?
In two decades, RiechesBaird evolved from a small local shop – as the old, two-man name implies – to a 23-person consultancy handling global accounts.
Founders Ryan Rieches and Ray Baird had added two partners – Alan Brew and Michael Dula. There’s the 3-year-old office in New York City. And dreams developing of a far broader empire.
With this grander vision in place, the consultancy asked itself – including many internal discussions from the top of the ladder to the lowest – what was the best way to position the company for the future.
“It was a great opportunity to practice what we preach,” Dula says.
One drawback, it seemed, was the name.
Family names in a corporate image certainly evoke a favorable impression of quality, hand-crafted products and service. At the same time, they can be limiting.
It may suggest a modest scope of work or service area. And some clients may want accounts handled only by the “name” partners – when it takes numerous crew members to deliver the services.
In addition, this firm’s name in particular was hard to spell and correctly pronounce – making it a tricky moniker to market domestically and internationally.
“We had to leave egos in the past,” says Rieches, a founder who is no longer in the name.
As the rebranding efforts were underway, the power of the company’s 5-year-old brandingbusiness.com website came into focus. It’s an educational hub for companies pondering a rebranding, not a RiechesBaird information site. The brandingbusiness.com site had developed a significant online following as a go-to site for marketing executives.
If the old name had to go, why not leverage the good vibes the firm had created with its branding-advice website? “BrandingBusiness” – in very direct, simple language –- says exactly what the company does.