It really bugs me when people want to “brand” things when all they mean is that they want to slap a logo on something…like the floor mats customers will wipe their feet on when they walk in the door. (That and the toilet paper wrappers are my favorites!)
We get so tied up in graphics that we forget the brand has to be the experience, not just the logo. It’s the combination of all the touchpoints and what the guest walks away with.
Our company’s president once asked one of our properties, “What do you want to be known for?” As we further refine our Isle brand, I need to answer this question. Then, I have to see if the GMs think they have the tools to deliver on that promise. Ultimately, however, we have to see if our line employees believe the promise enough to make sure they’re delivering the brand across every interaction. Big job. HUGE!
Think about the business you patronize regularly? Why do you do that? I love my dry cleaner because she remembers my name and fills in the slip without asking me how to spell it EVERY time I drop something off…which isn’t very regularly.
When people leave your business, what is the ONE thing you want them to always say? Is it a great product? Is it a great price? Is it great service? Is it that someone always remembers my name? What is it?
Now, once you’ve decided what that “thing” is, what are you going to do about it? What are the customer touchpoints where you can deliver that experience consistently? Where are you failing? Are your employees empowered to deliver this promise?
The answers to these questions will be more important than the color of your ad.
Read HSNA’s Thoughticles for more insight.
The problem is that marketers often focus only on defining and communicating the promise and leave the “living the promise” to others. Then, they measure the brand promise in the market and discover that it is not gaining the attraction and customer bonds desired. Then the marketer says, “We need to define our promise differently… we need a different position… or, we need a new ad campaign.” Could be. But, the issue also could be that what is needed is the consistent and purposeful execution of the promise in the customer experience. The promise is made but not being lived via the touchpoints with the company.