Allow you to charge more, a premium, for a service or product;
Attract more attention, interest, and customers;
Stand out in a cluttered marketplace, and;
Most importantly, increase your bottom line.
Leaders Start Internal
To create a successful brand, successful leaders start internally.
First, they identify the most powerful players who help breathe life into a brand. You got it. We’re talking employees. Treat them as brand ambassadors. As you begin to develop a brand campaign, make them feel special and a true stakeholder by rolling it out first to them before going public.
Ask them relevant questions:
Tell us what you think about our organization.
What makes us “truly” different?
What “ownable” characteristics define us?
What type of store would we be?
What type of vehicle would we be?
Next, share with them the results of the comprehensive marketing research, planning and analysis. Bring them into focus groups and one-on-one interviews. Collect, analyze and choose which employee suggestions are most helpful. Thank employees for their thoughts and share with them those recommendations that have been accepted and will help shape the campaign. This goodwill gesture will help increase internal buy in, confidence, support, awareness, and increase overall internal positive image and brand perceptions.
Here’s the deal: Successfully aligning employee perceptions about your brand means your customer perceptions will be supported and reinforced by what they hear and see from employees. Branding has a cascading affect.
Identify a diverse group of current and potential customers to continue the review and critique process. Again, this will provide valuable and critical feedback and recommendations to make sure the brand is on track and will resonate with current and potential customers and the public. Make necessary changes along the way. An added bonus is this process will likely inspire those participating to also become brand ambassadors.
Stick with It. Live with It. Add to It Along the Way.
At some point, organizations go through “boardroom burnout”. Internal leaders grow bored of a brand from repetition well before the public has seen it as much as they have because they live it everyday.
The worst mistake you can make is to change a brand too early in its life cycle and, in the process, lose valuable brand equity, the trust of your brand ambassadors and critical investment because you simply grew bored.
Resist that feeling.
Stick with your brand.
Nurture it. Embrace it. Grow it. Love it. Live with it.
To help evolve and freshen it, add secondary messages and new stories along the way. Regularly test your brand with selected internal and external stakeholders. If brand perceptions continue to align with reality, you have done your job well as leaders. If not, adjust the brand campaign accordingly.
Stay the course, my friends.
And continue to reap the benefits of a successful brand.
Ted Coutilish is an award-winning, seasoned marketing communication executive. He lives in Grosse Pointe Shores, Michigan. Currently, he is in a marketing communication leadership role for the University of Michigan College of Engineering in Ann Arbor. Previously, he worked in marketing communication leadership positions at Oakland Community College, Eastern Michigan University and Wayne State University.
Digital transformation at the enterprise level is the dance between the art of the practical and the possible. It's best approached with a hands-on strategy in helping organizations come up with what they can do at present to attain their goals. Digital transformation is a whole set of different tools, applications, and technologies that businesses […]
Until 2021, only 15 percent of organizations had prioritized digital transformation, according to Forrester. These are low numbers, given that most companies and businesses were forced to shift online due to the pandemic. The remaining 85 percent of organizations are working extra hard to keep up with the numerous digital transitions, with little effect. Is […]
Your manufacturing business continually strives to maintain profitability, stay ahead of the competition, and keep pace with technological changes. In addition, achieving and maintaining operational excellence is a significant goal of your company's success. Undoubtedly, this has proven to be a challenge amid a global pandemic as supply chain delays, increased costs, and staffing shortages […]