Over the past couple of months I’ve written a few times about branding. I keep coming back to it because of what I see in myself and in my business community. Branding is central to everything we do! I’ve said it before, but let me say it again:
Your brand is your PROMISE!
Here are 5 critical things to keep in mind around this subject.
Trust is the Foundation of a Brand
You establish your brand by building trust in a distinct promise about who you are, what you stand for, and what unique and meaningful benefits you deliver. Many people get too hung up on the logo or the visual identity. They spend too much time, energy, and money on making the graphics right, getting the colors right, making sure the style guide has unity. Those things are important but they mean nothing if you don’t have a unique promise that stands out, a promise that people believe and trust!
You Must Live Up To Your Promise
You build your brand by living up to your promise every single time people come into contact with your name, your message, or your business. This is critical! I know many struggling businesses that have a weak brand. The reason is that they are either not clear about their promise, or they are not consistent at keeping their promise. Create systems so your deliver your service or product on time with the best quality you can. You must earn and build your brand everyday!
Reinforce Your Promise Consistently
You strengthen your brand by constantly reinforcing your brand promise. Consistency is the name of the game! You must consistently deliver on your promise. And when you fail, you must acknowledge it and make it right as quickly as possible. Don’t avoid the problem or the customer. Be upfront about how you dropped the ball, and tell them how you plan to make it right, if you can. Then you must create systems to assure that you fix the problem. Apologies will only last so long.
Perception is Everything
Your brand is what your customers, referral sources, and prospects perceive – it’s not what you think or say! Their perception is everything. It doesn’t matter how much you think you keep your promise; if your customers don’t think so, then you will have a reputation of failing to keep it. You must listen and observe. You must solicit customer feedback. You must measure everything against their perception of how well you do at delivering on your promise. For example, if your brand promise is “reliability,” measure everything ruthlessly against how it helps you improve reliability! Then let THEM tell you how you are doing on reliability!
A Strong Brand Leads to Sales Success
The stronger your brand, the easier it will be to sell. All things being equal, we prefer to do business with people and companies we know, like, and trust. When a company faithfully delivers on a promise that is meaningful to you, you end up loving that company! You want to buy from them and support them. Obviously, that makes both buying and selling much, much easier!
Well, there you have it. It is my privilege as a business coach to serve business owners in Sugar Land, Katy TX, and the Houston area. I love to see them succeed by building a strong, powerful brand. Really, it doesn’t take a lot of money. It just takes clarity, and a lot of commitment, consistency, and accountability. Make sure you are excelling at building a great brand. Please let me know if I can help you!