The process of rebranding can be very challenging. Not only is it very time-consuming and costly, but it's also quite risky. In an interview with Verve, Mathias Eriksson, VP of Marketing at Juni, talks about what it's like to run a rebrand: the good, the bad and the ugly.
Be real, never wait and care deeply. That was FinTech scale-up Juni’s briefing to Verve. In the fast-moving world of e-commerce, Verve found a way to capture these values in a differentiating new brand. A brand that celebrates the friction of running an ecom business instead of pretending everything’s just sunshine and rainbows.
We spoke with Mathias Eriksson, VP of Marketing at Juni, about what it’s really like to run a rebrand: the good, the bad and the ugly.
“Branding plays a massive role within Juni.” Mathias says. “It’s all about influencing the perception of the people we care about. And that’s really hard. The first thing you need to do is to stand out. To be something. In order to do that, you need to agree on who you are. If that’s not aligned, you’re not harnessing your full value.”
“Branding creates a connection between a metaphysical entity and a person. When you create loyalty, one plus one equals more than two. That’s what you need in order to grow.”
But getting all teams on the same page is easier said than done when you’re the fastest-growing FinTech startup in Europe: “You fail at doing that at first. But we succeeded by being really clear on our values and by focusing on culture. We have to remember to connect with each other, even when there’s a huge launch going on.”
The process of going through a rebranding wasn’t new to Mathias, but he did introduce an entire team to the experience: “The whole Juni team now knows the power of branding. Even more so in six months from now.”
Mathias Eriksson, VP Marketing at Juni
Remember to connect with each other, even when there’s a huge launch going on.
Juni challenged Verve to create a new brand identity within nine weeks. What made Mathias and his team choose Verve?
“The very hands-on approach and Verve responding well to the aggressive timeline with an actual solution. We had an instant connection. It feels like you’re part of our team - like you could be working with us, rather than for us. I know there’s real engagement from your side.” Mathias explains. “You have expertise and skills that we don’t and vice versa. And we need an outside perspective. It’s what makes a good agency relationship. A clear, aligned objective of a project and complementary capabilities.”
But the toughest part of the project wasn’t choosing an agency. It was decided to do the actual rebranding. “I know what it entails to do this work. I’ve done 36 rebrands. The hardest part is taking a risk, making an investment, and not knowing if the result will be helpful.”
“Sometimes, you’ll end up in a situation where people like the old style more. I was afraid that that would slow us down, but I was very clear on where I did and did not want feedback from my team. We still don’t know if the new brand will be loved. In the end, at Juni, we are all about our community of customers: the hard-fighting ecom entrepreneurs. They deserve to survive, thrive, and win. Call me in two years to see if this brand will actually fly within our community.” Mathias jokingly says.
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The intense timeline didn’t paralyse the process. If anything, it helped all parties align quicker.
“We have created the foundations for a world-class brand. We’re doing something completely different and I’m confident that it’ll be helpful. I’ve never seen a process that has been this decisive, professional and quick. On both your and our side. You asked for an extra week when we said nine weeks. You got ten weeks and you made it work. It’s a daunting task, it’s impressive.”
“I would not have wanted to add more time to the process.” Mathias states. “It was intense, which is one of our core values. When you reach this level of intensity, you uncover things that otherwise wouldn’t be uncovered. People need to make decisions on the spot. We had some heated discussions. I’m actually glad you got to see that because then you get to know what life at Juni is really like. The stakes are high, decisions need to be made. Disagree, align and commit.”
Disagree, align and commit.
The power of the Juniverse
The Juni rebrand has succeeded if the new brand is used, loved and relevant: “It needs to play a role in people's lives. We want Juni to help e-commerce entrepreneurs survive and eventually win.”
“We’re all about keeping it real. The brand is about recognising that it’s a grind to be an ecom entrepreneur. We don’t want to sugarcoat anything. We want to be a true financial companion. That’s what you need, someone who empowers you, someone who’s there for you. That’s what we want Juni to be.” Mathias concludes.