Lessons from Lady Gaga, a strategic “rebranding” mastermind – SCN Encourager

Sometimes you’re up. Sometimes you’re down.

That’s life.


And when you’re in the midst of a downturn, it’s time to seriously consider a “rebrand.”

(Of course, you could always try what I do – just deny it – but your results will vary, with “lousy” being the best you could hope for.)

No, you’re better off following Lady Gaga’s lead.

She did the whole “rebrand” thing right.

And Forbes spelled out her phase-by-phase approach in this insightful article.

I was impressed Lady Gaga’s rebrand didn’t rely on hauling out a new logo… a new tagline… a new website… or some new message points to distribute.

She took the road less traveled.

I was astounded how Lady Gaga understood her brand well enough (what it was truly perceived to be) to even make an eventual rebrand strategy possible.

She had no delusions about where she stood career-wise, so she effectively established her new direction prior to launching her rebrand effort.

Not only did she have a clear vision in mind, she leaned into Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’ notion that “your brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room.”

While I’m personally perfectly happy not knowing what people say about me when I’m not in the room (coward that I am), you’ve got to give Lady Gaga props for realistically taking stock of her brand, and for coming to grips with the hard work associated with changing it.

Changing behaviors and public perceptions are two of the hardest things to do.

And most “rebranders” refrain from this kind of heavy lifting.

Although the story in Forbes is brief and compelling, here’s my speedy-kwik rundown of the FIVE STEPS Lady Gaga used to spark her successful rebrand.

1.  Once she decided to go, she proceeded with a loose grip on all things past. She accelerated change.

2.  She identified and double-downed on a core strength.

3.  She zeroed in on building her audience like few can or do.

4.  She remained loyal to her loyal base like few can or do.

5.  She earned “reconsideration” by her actions, not the hype.

Sure, Lady Gaga also knew she had to attract attention – for that’s the battle we all face as communicators.

Attracting attention.

Except in the case of my own daughters, that is.

That’s the last thing they’re trying to do.

They embarrassed to even tell their friends on Facebook that dear ol’ dad is blogging about Lady Gaga.

Too incongruous.
Too ridiculous.
Just too weird for an old guy.

They’re probably right.

Maybe it’s best for my daughters to just ignore who or what I write about and I should count my blessings.

At least they haven’t posted on Facebook that I’ve died… yet. 

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