Date of Award

Summer 8-29-2019

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Honors Designation

na

Program of Study

Communication - Corporate Communication

Language

English

First Advisor

Stephen K. Dishart

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to identify how organizations can effectively communicate with employees during a rebrand in order to obtain their acceptance of the changes, otherwise known as employee buy-in. Prior research has found that employee acceptance of a rebrand is a contributing factor towards a successful rebrand; however, prior research fails to determine how the rebrand can be best communicated to employees to obtain their buy-in. The research performed for the study took place in two parts. First, 142 online surveys probing employee and consumer perception about rebranding were performed. Secondly, three semi-structured interviews with professionals who have had experience with rebranding in their given organizations were conducted.

The quantitative and qualitative survey results found that employees certainly want to be engaged in the rebranding process and have a say in it. Furthermore, in terms of messaging used to achieve employee buy-in during a rebrand, employees want it to feel that it connects to them on a personal level. Lastly, in relation to communication channel selection, the research found that employees preferred interactive channels that allow them to take part in dialogues regarding the rebrand. Each of these ideas were subsequently substantiated by the interviews conducted in which professionals with experience in rebranding recounted what made each rebrand a success

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