Reinventing your sound and image: how to approach rebranding


Emilija Aneta Kazlauskaite

3/11/20244 min read

Sometimes, you might feel that the musical or visual direction you have chosen for your band isn’t working anymore. Then, you might consider the option of rebranding. But how do you go about doing that?

Rebranding can be an exciting and challenging journey allowing you to rediscover who you are as a band. Beforehand, I would like to let you know that this rebranding process will demand a lot of self-reflection, creativity, and teamwork. So prepare yourself with patience and determination.

In this article, I will share ideas on approaching the rebranding process. I hope this will guide you in your journey of new sound and image.

Share your musical inspirations

If you’re in a full band, arrange an evening of music listening. Try gathering in a relaxed setting, perhaps someone’s home, not necessarily a studio, with good speakers. Each of you should bring your favourite tracks, albums, and artists, and share why these inspirations are important and how they could be integrated into the future.

Bring at least five artists or albums, and think in advance about why they are important and how they could be adapted and used in the future. Discuss these inspirations openly, the details you like or dislike, and brainstorm how these influences can be incorporated into your future work.

If you mostly create music yourself, it is still a good exercise to bring up and analyse music that inspires you and how it could be used and aligned with your new sound and image. Be specific about what you both like and dislike.

This evening will strengthen your musical connection, and help define the boundaries of shared inspiration, gradually shaping a new, universally appealing sound.

Vision and goals

What makes you, you? What do you want to achieve with your music? Why do you create, and why should people listen to your creations? These are complex questions that require input from each one of you. So how do you get there?

Organise a brainstorming session with all band members about your joint vision and goals. Discuss the music genre you want to pursue, the emotions you want to evoke, and the messages you want to convey to your audience. These are crucial questions that, once addressed, will provide clarity for your new direction.

Analyze what previously worked and what didn’t. Discuss visual identity, social media presence, sound, and audience perception. Identify elements that felt genuine and sincere and those that seemed forced. Talk about musical choices that resonated with your audience and those that missed the mark. Acknowledge your strengths and weaknesses, and define a new artistic direction. Structuring your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) analysis will be helpful in this regard.

Create a vision board encapsulating your new identity and the essence of your band. Use visuals, quotes, and symbols that reflect your new musical identity. You can create an inspiration board in your studio, gradually add elements, or have an online document where you jot down what you associate with the new band direction. Include emotions and themes you want to explore in your creative work and look for colours or design elements that resonate with your vision.

Creative workshops

There is no better way to find your new musical direction than just simply playing music and experimenting. There are numerous ways to approach creativity from different angles, but I will highlight a few that I find effective.

Experiment with Genres

Experiment with different music genres, even those that previously seemed nonsensical. These experiments might lead to a unique style defining your new sound. Consider your previous discussions and shared inspirations; sometimes starting with covers can be a good stepping stone and warm-up.

Instrument Swap

Rotate instruments freely during jam sessions. This practice can bring fresh perspectives. One crucial aspect is to relax and have fun. Experimentation, goofing around, and having a good time are all part of a successful process. If it’s not enjoyable, why you should you make it?

Consider Bringing in a Producer

Introducing a new perspective with an extra person can bring fresh ideas. Not all producers are expensive, you can find individuals willing to contribute free of charge or for a percentage from your royalties. They can help refine your sound and unearth your unique identity.

Solo Exploration

Sometimes, great ideas come from solitary moments. If you’re in a creative camp, dedicate first part of the day for individual creativity. Present your ideas to the group in the afternoon, some might stick and be suitable for further development.

Embrace the Power of Samples

Create samples and experiment immediately with your preferred recording software. Something quirky, distorted, or entirely unusual might become an unexpected element in your composition. Play around with it, and see what works.

Rebranding your band is an opportunity to rediscover your love for music, strengthen your artistic identity, and connect more closely with your audience. Yet all these practices are vital and important even for those not seeking rebranding but wanting to discover and identify their voice more clearly.

Experimenting with new activities, clearly defining your inspirations, embracing creative freedom, reflecting on the past, and creating a unified vision will help you propitiously reshape your sound and image.

Remember, authenticity is the key factor determining your appeal to yourselves and your listeners – stay true to yourselves, and your new direction will emerge. Best of luck, and always write with courage.