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Our company underwent a brand identity change three years ago, but unfortunately, our core product's theme has not been aligned with the new identity. As a first step, we are planning to provide a seamless transition and we are proposing a theme-level change for our product. This will bring our product in line with our new brand identity and colors.

We have taken steps to minimize any potential disruption. We have developed a "Switch to Classic Theme" feature that allows users to revert the theme if needed.

However, I am facing some challenges in convincing our internal and external stakeholders of the importance of this change. I would like to hear from the UX community about any similar case studies and experiences in convincing stakeholders of the importance of aligning a product with a new brand identity. What are some effective strategies and arguments to make to stakeholders who may be resistant to change? Any advice and insights would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

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    FWIW: You have not convinced me yet either that your product needs a new theme. What effect are you intending to have with this change, other than "looks more like the brand"? Apr 26, 2023 at 17:17
  • What are your stakeholders' objections?
    – Izquierdo
    Apr 27, 2023 at 20:31

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This is a politics and negotiation question more than a UX question... but that said it's always a tricky one.

If your title is such that you have some explicit influence (such as being a VP or something), that will make your job easier, but I expect that is not the case.

Given that, the strongest arguments you can make will be ones that align with the goals of the company or affect financial goals. If there are core principles that the company espouses and truly adheres to, tying your efforts to those can be very effective. For example, if one of the company's clear and stated goals is "Live up to our brand identity" and you can show how the current UI theme does not do that, you'll be on a stronger footing.

Also being really OUT of sync with the new branding could be a strong argument for an update. If the new brand identity includes something like the empowerment of your users and easy self-serviceability, and your current product theme does something to hamper that for the users, you might have more of an argument.

Anything you can do to show that an update will improve the financial position of the company, even marginally, will be worth listening to for a stakeholder. I'm not sure how that might manifest in a brand update, but if the accessibility of your old branding makes the site harder to use for certain populations, updating that in your UI might not only bring in more users from those populations, it might help prevent costly lawsuits from those who cannot use your product.

And of course the best thing you can usually do is rely on your data. If you have gotten repeated

Bear in mind - when it comes to branding, it might be a trickier balance than you want. Is your core user for the product the same person as the target of that branding and marketing? I've worked for plenty of places where the branding was of one style, but the work I was doing had nothing to do with the TARGET of that branding, so there was no motivation to change.

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