I had a couple of opportunities last week to discuss Branding with clients. I thought it might be useful to talk about real world challenges that Small Business Owners face. Both of these examples come from my view that Brand and Brand Messaging has to do with Execution in the Business.
The first example comes from a firm in the Marketing Business. This is a Business owned by a Couple and they are the primary actors in the Business. We are working on re-positioning the Business to serve a higher end clientele. The challenge is that the more technical of the partners comes from a background and experience that is contrary to the kind of Brand they want to develop. This has caused some customer confusion and loss of potential business. I wanted to give them some concrete steps on how to make a change.
As usual, I fell back to Automobile companies. They make such wonderful examples in Branding because of the variety and breadth of examples. I asked the person to describe to me someone dispatched from the company to deal with a car issue. In one case, the car was a Rolls-Royce. In the other, it was a VW Bug. He gave a description of the different people that would show up. I pointed out to him that neither was right or wrong. They simply were and that is okay. The two people they described were very different and we talked about the differences.
Next, I asked them about some companies that they respected in their business. I got some answers and asked how my clients differed and how they wanted to work within their business and what image they wished to project. I think the client got it at that point. They get to project any image that they choose. But they do get to choose it and they need to be consistent about it.
Later, I met a client in the Construction Business. They had the problem that many of the employees did not demonstrate the same values that they did. We talked about that. I started by suggesting that he make sure that all the employees know what his differentiation is. This is all part of his Brand Message to prospects and clients. If his employees are not clear on the Brand, then they need to be as they are customer facing on a regular basis. We went through the exercise of going from the Lead Generation from following through on the Brand Message all the way to their paychecks. I hope to hear positive results at our next meeting.
I hope seeing Branding and the Brand Message in action helps. Everybody has challenges and with just a bit of effort we can make things much clearer and better for our customers.
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