Monday, March 21, 2016

Are you working on branding?

A few years ago some advertising people came to visit me. I was promoting my restaurant and working hard to bring in new customers. They saw that as an opportunity to talk about branding. To them, it seemed, my advertising should focus on presenting my unique selling proposition - we entered a lengthy discussion about what differentiates us from our competition.

To me, building your brand goes way beyond that. Your brand is the experience your company provides to customers throughout their relationship with you. Every customer touchpoint is a brand moment. Those promoting branding say that a solid brand is the foundation upon which your corporate culture and future growth is built. To me, that is putting the cart before the horse. Your brand is how people react to how well you live and breathe your values and your vision. It’s not how your company wants to be perceived in the marketplace, but how it actually is perceived by customers. When there’s a misalignment between these perceptions, your brand is broken.

So when you set out to work on your brand, focus on 3 things

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