The Scottish Referendum is but a month away and millions of Scots will have a chance to vote on whether they want their country to become independent or not.
Various polls still suggest that the ‘No’ vote holds the majority but the debate still goes on and ever intensifies.
There are a huge number of people who are still undecided and if they choose to vote yes then the campaign could well succeed, with first minister Alex Salmond saying the country would separate in 2016.
This would signal a huge political change for Scotland and indeed the rest of the UK, but what would this mean for businesses that trade using British and Scottish branding?
Few brands have spoken publicly about their intentions but preparing for the possibility of independence is critical.
According to a recent ICM survey, three in ten consumers believe that retailers should no longer use the union jack with a surprising number of people undecided as to whether or not they would continue buying from a retailer who advertises with the iconic flag.
Also, while few consumers think that British branded companies like British Airways or British Gas should change their name, half of the people surveyed remain undecided or don’t know.
In contrast, very few consumers identify with the use of a ‘Best of England’ branding compared with half of the people surveyed who strongly identify with ‘Best of Britain’ branding, which suggests that Britain could still hold enough clout as a name, even without the Scots.
So what are British brands to do? Should they continue to fly the union jack and trade under an internationally recognised name? Or do they choose to rebrand themselves to be in line with a Great Britain without Scotland?
The issue doesn’t just involve British branded businesses. Scottish brands like Scottish Widows and Scottish Power are also at risk with a third of consumers saying they would be less likely to deal with them if the country gains independence.
That figure is even higher when you look at higher income households with forty-six per cent of those earning more than £55,000 saying they would be less likely to do business with Scottish brands in the event of independence.
They will need to ask themselves the same questions and decide whether it would be better to remain as they are, drop the reference to Scotland or completely rebrand themselves.
It’s a complex issue and while a redesign could help prevent a massive drop in revenue, it could also cost a huge amount of money and potentially harm the reputation of historically British and Scottish brands.
The key thing for all affected will be to come up with a viable contingency plan now to ensure that if Scotland does gain independence, they are ahead of the curve and not caught with their flags in a twist.