Rebranding: Change is Never Easy
Or more accurately, making the decision to change is never easy. Once that decision is made, I have found that change takes on its own course and flows.
In 2014, after 10 years of doing business as the Survey Sciences Group, LLC, I came to the conclusion that a change was needed (and wrote about that here). This decision had roots in my thinking as far as two or three years prior, but I resisted those ideas, fearful of what such a change would mean.
The reality was that after this much time, even our best research collaborators were routinely mixing up our name.
Student Social Services Group... Social Survey Group... Survey Services Group... Survey Center Services Group... Student Surveys Inc...
Twice during this time, customers got it so wrong that we could not cash their check - our bank being certain that it could not have been meant for us.
Trained as a survey researcher, and not as a branding expert, I learned this lesson on branding the hard way. As Seth Godin would likely say, we had a dumb and generic brand. I was too personally tied to the old name, so this was difficult to acknowledge.
Working with NewFoundry in Ann Arbor, Michigan, we began a process to uncover our brand character, where we learned we are all-in, authentic, agile, and aligned. Further, we focused in on a clear purpose (the fundamental reason we are in business):
Our Purpose: To propel social science forward for the greater good.
With our purpose clear, we found a mission that provides an overall strategy for achieving that purpose:
Our Mission: Develop and deliver innovative, science-guided survey methodology practices and services to the global community of social science researchers.
It is no secret that we have chosen the name SoundRocket to be our outward expression of our brand - come back in a couple days to learn more about what other names we considered, and why SoundRocket emerged as the winner!