Ask a Fractional CMO: Which Comes First – Website or Rebrand?

Ask a Fractional CMO Website or Rebrand

This month’s Ask a Fractional CMO question comes from a B2B leader: “We are planning to redo our website and focus on company rebranding afterward. Can New Initiatives Marketing help?”

Welcome to another edition of  Ask a Fractional CMO, the monthly newsletter where we tackle pressing questions in the B2B marketing landscape. I’m Jen Kelly, founder and fractional CMO at New Initiatives Marketing, joined by Nicole Crozier, another fractional CMO at the company. Today, we’re answering an intriguing question from a B2B leader: “We are planning to redo our website and focus on company rebranding afterward. Can New Initiatives Marketing help?”

This question opens up an important discussion about the ideal “order of operations” in B2B marketing. While clients often approach us for specific projects like a website redesign, we firmly believe that marketing strategy should always come first.

Watch the full video:

Why Branding and Strategy First?

You might think it’s more effective to start with the most visible element: your website. After all, it’s your company’s digital storefront and you want to get the “most bang for your buck,” right? However, that could be a costly mistake.

When you’re considering a company rebrand, which typically includes both visual and messaging changes, that new information will have to be incorporated into the website anyway. Our recommendation is to flip the process: start with the marketing strategy, which includes the rebranding, and then move on to updating your website in line with that new brand identity.

The True Essence of Branding

A brand is not just a logo or a color scheme. It’s your company’s core message, positioning, and differentiator in the marketplace. It encompasses the totality of your customer experiences and is crucial to every aspect of your marketing system.

Imagine redesigning your website and then proceeding to rebrand your company. You might find that your new website doesn’t align with your brand’s core message or strategy. This misalignment means going back to the drawing board for the website, wasting both time and resources.

Efficiency is Key

When working with a company, our goal is to create a well-oiled “marketing engine.” Efficiency is not just about time; it’s also about effectively using your budget and human resources. By first focusing on strategy and rebranding, you create a foundation upon which everything else—including your website—can be built.

Common Pitfalls and Misconceptions

You might wonder why many opt to start with their website. Generally, business leaders are more familiar with websites than with the complexity of a rebranding process. The website is a tangible asset that they interact with regularly, and updating it feels like immediate progress. But remember, your marketing isn’t for you—it’s for your current and potential customers. Being “bored” with your messaging might be a poor reason to overhaul it if it’s still effectively reaching your audience.

Our Final Word: Brand then Website Will Save You Valuable Time & Effort

When faced with the task of website redesign and rebranding, consider your “order of operations” carefully. Our advice is straightforward: prioritize your brand and overall marketing strategy first. This approach ensures that you lay a strong foundation on which all other elements, including your website, can be effectively and efficiently built.

By taking these steps, you optimize not only your financial resources but also your team’s time and energy, ensuring a cohesive and effective marketing experience for your clients.

What’s Your Question? Ask Us Now and Be Featured in the Ask a Fractional CMO Newsletter

Ask a Fractional CMO is the monthly newsletter where you get to ask your most pressing questions around B2B marketing.  NIM’s Fractional CMOs Jen Kelly and Nicole Croizier will tackle two questions each month, answering them in their Ask A Fractional CMO video blog and newsletter.  You can ask your question now and review answers to past questions RIGHT HERE.

Next Steps: The CEO’s Ultimate Guide to Building an Effective B2B Marketing Team in Today’s Complex Marketing World 

To help you make important decisions around your marketing investment, we’ve created a comprehensive 33-page eBook: The B2B CEO’s Ultimate Guide to Building an Expert Marketing Team in Today’s Complex Marketing World

In this eBook, we walk you through the six most important questions B2B CEOs need to answer in order to build their first marketing team and choose the right marketing model for their stage of business:

  1. How Do You Know It’s Time to Invest in Marketing?
  2. What are B2B Marketing Best Practices?
  3. How Has B2B Marketing Become More Complex?
  4. What Are the Top Challenges in Getting Started in Marketing?
  5. What Does a B2B Marketing Team Look Like?
  6. Should You Hire In-House or Outsource?

You can download the eBook RIGHT HERE

Book a Marketing Strategy Consultation:

If you have any questions about this blog post or the eBook or would like to schedule a consultation with Jen Kelly, NIM’s Founder and one of the Fractional CMOs to get more guidance around your next steps in marketing, you can send her an email or book a consultation time.

Jen Kelly leads New Initiatives Marketing, Inc., a Fractional CMO & Expert B2B Marketing Team company. Since 2009, our team of senior marketing leaders and expert marketing specialists has been helping B2B CEOs with the strategic leadership and real-world marketing execution needed for practical, long-term results.

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