Learning from Brilliant Norwegian Re-branding!
The country formerly known as the Kingdom of Norway has taught us a Huge lesson about branding!
Norway Renames Itself
Faced with a huge challenge to their brand, the Norwegians rose to the challenge. They showed the world that they would not let their brand be hijacked by bad press due to someone else's ill-considered remark. They seized the opportunity to build their brand by riding on the news tidal wave!
OK, maybe not - the renaming is satire, or fake news, however you want to look at it, but the point stands: Norway's people and statesmen stood up and made lots of noise, rather than trying to hide from the news cycle.
Breaking the Old Rules of Branding
When we are faced with a challenge to the brand we build painfully over time, the standard rule is to stay the course and wait out the storm, sticking with the old brand. Generally this is great advice and for every brilliant re-branding move, I see 10 or more where the brand would be better off by staying with the established identity. After all, we can only afford so much advertising to build that brand awareness, so we should be patient.
But there are big exceptions, when assaults on the brand could be a huge disadvantage or a massive big opportunity. Norway saw that opportunity and showed the world that they can jump when they need to, getting politicians to make powerful statements right away, to ride the news tidal wave rather than be drowned by it. Even the political right wing of Norway has taken a stand in solidarity with the developing nations denigrated in the statement where they were mentioned positively.
I'm sure foreign investments, tourism and national pride will all see benefits from Norway's solidarity and bold PR moves to burnish their brand. I always liked this country; now I like it more. But if they really did rename themselves I would have to visit Oslo in solidarity with the brilliant branding!
What do YOU think?