2023 Was The Year of the Rebrand: Why Companies Are Embracing Change

Posted inBranding & Identity Design

This past year, we witnessed many companies across industries choosing to redefine themselves. But why the sudden surge in rebrands and brand refreshes? COVID-19 has brought profound and rapid global changes, and the branding sphere is no exception. Market research firm Hanover found that 75% of companies revamped their visual identities post-2020, while UpCity’s 2022 survey reported a 51% change in brand strategy due to the pandemic.

Two key drivers stand out: necessity and opportunity.

Necessity often arises from mergers, leadership shifts, or public perception crises. Meanwhile, opportunity stems from growth projections, substantial shifts in products/services, or market-driven company restructuring. Whether by necessity or opportunity, here are some more reasons why a company might choose to rebrand:

  1. To Adapt to a Dynamic World: Staying relevant and market-competitive by aligning with changing consumer needs.
  2. To Reflect/Reinforce Values and Vision: It’s not just about a new look; rebrands reflect a company’s core values and vision for the future.
  3. To Stay Technologically Relevant: Establishing a more robust digital presence and enhancing user experiences in an increasingly online world.
  4. To Evolve with the Customer: Signals a commitment to growth and innovation, driving companies to meet changing customer demands.
  5. To Reposition for the Future: Strategic repositioning allows companies to capture new markets and expand their global footprint for the future.

Here’s a roundup of companies that launched notable brands that piqued our interest in 2023.

US Army by Siegel+Gale

National Portrait Gallery by Edit Brand Studio & Peter Horridge

Jell-O by BrandOpus

Nokia by Lippincott

We also covered the controversy surrounding the Nokia logo refresh in our Type Tuesday column.

Burberry by Burberry

Reddit by Pentagram

Check out my interview with Pentagram’s Natasha Jen about the Reddit brand refresh.

Fanta by the Coca-Cola Company and Jones Knowles Ritchie

City of New York by Graham Clifford

PRINT also covered New Yorkers’ thoughts (well, tantrum) on the new logo.

“X” logo by Sawyer Merritt

Pepsi by PepsiCo

Read our coverage of the Pepsi rebrand.

Johnson & Johnson by Wolff Olins

Wolff Olins launched their own brand refresh in 2023, too.

MAX by DixonBaxi

This rebrand by London’s DixonBaxi, elicited some big feels from consumers. PRINT’s Chloe Gordon interviewed Sarah Ratinetz, creative director at Forsman & Bodenfors, touching on emotional attachments, if content is more important than design, and her sweet personal connection to HBO.

Eurostar by DesignStudio

Slurpee by Safari Sundays

The Year of the Rebrand isn’t just about a new look—it’s a bold statement of evolution, resilience, and a commitment to staying at the forefront of innovation. Which is your favorite?