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The Moz rebrand story: what we learned (both good and bad) on our journey from SEOmoz to Moz.
 

The Moz rebrand story: what we learned (both good and bad) on our journey from SEOmoz to Moz.

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The Moz rebrand story began over 2 years ago. As SEOmoz, we took on the task of rebranding the company, launching a new website, and launching a new software product all at the same time. See what we ...

The Moz rebrand story began over 2 years ago. As SEOmoz, we took on the task of rebranding the company, launching a new website, and launching a new software product all at the same time. See what we learned (both good and bad) along the way.

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  • http://www.thefreedictionary.com/rebrandMary Lambkin & Laurent Muzellec: Corporate Rebranding – The Art of Destroying, transferring and recreating brand equity. http://www.optimum7.com/internet-marketing/design/rebranding-the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly.html
  • There’s lots of notable examples of companies doing proactive rebranding. Apple Computers rebranded to Apple when they wanted to move beyond just selling computers. Yellow Pages rebranded to YP when they saw a big decline in their physical directories that were being utilized. http://www.sustainablebrands.com/news_and_views/communications/three-tips-successful-rebranding
  • In the early 2000’s, the iconic British clothing brand, Burberry, started to overextend itself and was putting it’s trademark plaid on to all sorts of clothing items beyond the traditional trench coats and umbrellas. This caused confusion amongst consumers and the brand started to develop a negative image as hip-hop culture started to embrace it. It took a new creative director and new direction for them to right the ship. http://www.sustainablebrands.com/news_and_views/communications/three-tips-successful-rebranding
  • It’s important to point out that this was as huge, long project. When I started at Moz more than 2 years ago, we were around 30 employees and we had just kicked off the planning/research around our rebrand and new software. We knew we were going to change to Moz eventually and launch a new product, what we didn’t know was that it would take us around 2 years to pull that off. With products like Followerwonk,Getlisted, Fresh Web Explorer and the new Moz Analytics – it wasn’t genuine for us to consider ourselves an SEO software company anymore.While Rand was pretty slow to admit it, even he couldn’t deny that the rise of Inbound Marketing as an umbrella function that has SEO, Social, Content, Brand, and other channels within it was changing the way we viewed SEO. While our industry didn’t necessarily have a problem with the word SEO, people outside of our industry have always had a negative view of SEO as this spammy thing that people do to get their sites to rank higher. No matter how much we tried to fight this as a company by being transparent and encouraging folks to do better marketing, it was always going to inhibit our ability to expand our customer base and get people to see the value of organic search.This one might seem silly if you have heard of us for a while now but it’s true, even my dad referred to SEOmoz as see-ow-moze for at least my first year of working for Moz. We used to be a consulting company and even though it had been 4 year since we had our last consulting clients, we would still have people reach out to us on a weekly basis asking for consulting help.Honestly, this was the most exciting reason to rebrand. It was letting us offer a new look to past customers or people who had interacted with us while letting us show off our vision and mission for the future. http://moz.com/blog/goodbye-seomoz-hello-moz
  • We had a ton of goals beyond these goals and goals that other teams were shooting for. For example, our tech ops team was shooting to have only 15 minutes of down time when they migrated from the old domain to the new one. Our SEO team had a goal to get our search traffic back to 80% of where it was pre-launch within 2 weeks of launching. Our design team had a goal of having the new site written up on design blogs as an example of unique, creative web design.
  • One of the biggest things we learned looking back on this project was that we tied the rebrand to too many other things. We shouldn’t have tied the rebrand to the product launch since any product launch delays would cause the rebrand launch to also be delayed. The overall scope of this project became too big by having so many dependencies.
  • The entire company had access to this doc. We updated each function task with requirements and who the owner was as well as setting deadline status and what other teams we needed to get a task finished. There were so many moving parts and tasks that needed to be completed prior to launch that we had to have one central place where we were tracking everything. This doc was a lifesaver.
  • People in the industry started speculating about the Moz rebrand when they saw we owned the domain (moz.com). We embraced this and even launched a teaser site to let people know something was coming. The main thing we kept secret was the new software but we embraced the fact that people were speculating about the new brand. If this happens to you, don’t let it scare you. Utilize the excitement that people have when they are speculating about changes you are making and give them something to keep them excited.
  • How are you going to drive traffic on launch day? We had a lot of tactics and strategies including homepage takeovers, paid search, retargeting our SEOmoz audience, press releases, and PR coverage.
  • Most site takeovers have to be reserved at least 30 days in advance. We worked with our in-house design team to design our ad units and pick relevant sites to launch on. We finally had a brand/product that could appeal to a broader audience other than just savvy SEO’s so we picked sites like BusinessInsider, VentureBeat, and Entrepreneur.com. The main goal of the site takeovers was to get the new brand in front of a large audience and to get people to come check out the new site and ultimately sign up on the wait-list.
  • Our paid marketing channels performed so well on launch day due to the consistency we had with our brand (colors/logo/messaging), the breadth of our placement strategy, and the work we did prior to launch to build buzz.
  • This was an important piece of launch day. We had over 100,000 followers on Facebook and 200,000 on Twitter when we launched and we needed to migrate our social accounts to the new brand. We did all of this in 15 minutes on launch day due to the work we did ahead of time.
  • This resulted in over 100% improvement in page views to the product section and Tools page and a reduction in bounce rates.
  • Your employees are your biggest assets. Show them off. Don’t just show off the e-team or the board, show off the people who actually run your business day-to-day. Show off your personality and quirks, it’s what makes you unique.
  • If we had to go back and do it over again, we would’ve chosen to plan our designs around responsiveness from the get-go. Now we have to go back and try to make the site responsive which is much harder.
  • While creative nav’s look nice and might be intuitive, having different navigations on the different sections of your site can be a painful user experience and make it hard to scale as your site grows/changes.
  • This was probably the hardest thing for us at Moz over the 2 year rebranding project. It started to consume us since it was so massive. Linking the rebrand, new website and new software together made it where we had a long period where we weren’t able to release things and feel the sense of accomplishment that comes along with that. Be wary of this as you work on a project of this scale so you can address burnout and frustrations employees may be feeling before they get too big.
  • Showmoz launch day video: http://seomoz.wistia.com/medias/oz6cpnlpwr

The Moz rebrand story: what we learned (both good and bad) on our journey from SEOmoz to Moz. The Moz rebrand story: what we learned (both good and bad) on our journey from SEOmoz to Moz. Presentation Transcript

  • The Moz rebrand story: what we learned (both good and bad) on our journey from SEOmoz to Moz. Masters of Business Online – Oct 9, 2013 Justin Vanning: Senior Customer Acquisition Manager @justinvanning
  • What does “rebrand” mean? 2 @justinvanning
  • Why do companies rebrand? 3 @justinvanning
  • Why do companies rebrand? 4
  • 1. Have the right reasons for rebranding and let those reasons guide you throughout the project. Make sure your team supports those reasons.
  • Why did we decide to rebrand? 7 @justinvanning
  • 2. Set goals and BHAG’s that the entire company can shoot for with the rebrand launch.
  • Marketing goals of the rebrand for launch day/week… 9 @justinvanning
  • 3. Don’t try to do too much. Be willing to de-scope the project so you can meet your deadlines.
  • So what did we want to change with our rebrand? 11
  • Seriously, we planned to launch a new brand, website, and product at the same time. Yeah we were crazy! 12 @justinvanning
  • 4. Stay organized. Come up with some sort of way to track all the projects and status of each.
  • We used a master spreadsheet at Moz to help organize and plan all rebrand related activities. 14
  • 5. Build buzz prior to launch if possible.
  • How did we build buzz prior to launch? 16
  • 6. Plan your launch day site takeovers well in advance
  • What did our launch day site takeover presence look like? 18 @justinvanning
  • How did our paid advertising perform on launch day? Wallpaper Ad Unit 81,892 impressions 2,442 clicks 2.98% CTR *highest ever on GW 2,066,064 impressions 5,177 clicks .25% CTR 19 Homepage Takeovers: 4,684,649 impressions 19,193 clicks 4,852 wait-list signups Other Paid Channels: 3,489 wait-list signups @justinvanning 1,989,397 impressions 10,255 clicks 0.52% CTR *Wallpaper units had 2.75% CTR or higher – one of the highest ever seen on BI 547,296 impressions 1,319 clicks .24% CTR *Wallpaper unit wasn’t clickable
  • 7. Plan your social media account migration in advance to coordinate for a smooth launch day experience.
  • How did we migrate our social accounts? 21 @justinvanning
  • 8. When planning and building a new website, make sure you don’t get too crazy where the site becomes inflexible.
  • Things we did well with our new site... 23 @justinvanning
  • Things we did well with our new site... 24 @justinvanning
  • Things we did well with our new site... 25 @justinvanning
  • Things we could’ve done better… 26 @justinvanning
  • Things we could’ve done better… 27 @justinvanning
  • 9. Try to make sure you are still releasing things during this major project so your teams have milestones to celebrate. Be wary of burnout.
  • 10. Communicate the results of your goals/launch day with the entire company.
  • So, how did we do? 30
  • So, how did we do? 31 @justinvanning
  • So, how did we do? Facebook Stats: 1st post (launch at 7:15am): Reach - 61664 Comments - 115 Likes - 692 Shares - 71 Clicks - 3636 Engagement: 587% above average FB post 32 2nd post (10:32am): Reach - 43888 Comments - 43 Likes - 540 Shares - 168 Clicks - 5659 Engagement: 527% above average FB post @justinvanning Twitter Stats: Inbound messages: 1729 Outbound Messages: 371 Messages sent by Mozzers: 350 #thenewmoz hashtag uses: 1086
  • Key takeaways from our rebrand: • Plan ahead and plan for the unexpected • Involve everyone at your company • Have a clear plan and goals for your rebrand • Communicate that plan and the goals with the entire company • Don’t make the project bigger than it needs to be • Be transparent with your customers and community on why you are making the changes you’re making • Be responsive to your customers and community with their feedback/questions regarding the rebrand
  • Last but not least, have fun and celebrate your hard work! See what our launch day was like: http://seomoz.wistia.com/medias/oz6cpnlpwr
  • Thanks for listening! 35 @justinvanning