It’s a new day, a new week, a new dawn to begin again and rebrand (renew). If you opened your eyes today that means you can be counted amongst the lucky stars that have the potential to not only twinkle, but light up a galaxy 😉
I began a series on branding some time ago and though I did not specialize in marketing per se, I thought I’d share a thing or two since I’ve been a place or two that revealed way too much to keep to myself. (So no, this is not one of those best.kept.secrets, just common knowledge repackaged to suit your customers or tribe as it’s called in this world).
What we call ‘tribe’ in this case does not carry religious connotations, but often referred to your ideal customer.
It’s more than what a person looks like, rather lifestyle habits, socio-economic background (family values and customs, religious/spiritual belief systems/education/work background) giving rise to priorities, predispositions, purchasing habits and tendencies.
If you are currently employed full-time or own a business, think about what you would like your customer or anybody you interact with to:
- Walk away with (think, feel, do) – upon 1st encounter/meeting?
- Walk away with – after first purchase/service encounter?
- Tell their family at home, colleagues/staff at work next day and friends after work?
- Walk away with (feel, do, say about you) 3 purchases in? After 6 months, 1 year, 5 years? Do you think your brand would make it that far?
Some signals that your brand is as strong as your (sparkling) persona!
- If your family and customers/acquaintances share what you told them with their own family at the dinner table or in the car on a road trip.
- Your own family is one thing (they tend to either strongly agree or disagree with you or come to your defense). But if your customers/acquaintances go forth and tell their friends at the next barbeque; wine & cheese, Bar Mitzvah or (children’s) Christmas party, then you know you got something good going on.
- If they can’t stop replaying stuff you said (e.g. the recommended use of your product right before they head to bed as they meditate on life to make that change – kinda like what Michael Jackson sang about all those years ago!).
- If your customers/acquaintances seem to apply what you’ve said to them in some form or another during their day-to-day work and life activities.
- If they become repeat customers (over a lengthy period of time) or return to you for advice on a new purchase etc.
To recap previous blogs. You must know who YOU are thru and thru before you can determine WHAT is your BRAND or do justice to anybody else’s brand. Your brand is an extension of who you are deep within based on your deeper values and beliefs.
If you make a study out of who you are, as the years pile on and what you aim to achieve by selling anything to anyone, you’d come to realize that nobody is ever really capable of ‘stealing’ away ‘your share of the pie’. If so, it wasn’t yours to begin with.
The customers who are really for you and really want your product or service will find you in Antarctica if need be.
Nothing or no one will be able to take them away from you. You won’t have to beg, trick or use scare tactics to coerce them to buy from you.
If your existing customer base is tapped out (for want of a better phrase) and other conditions remain the same (e.g. there’s no famine or war or other [odd] disturbances), you’d be able to step back, regroup and (creatively) repackage your offering in a different way to meet the needs of the customers who are left.
Once your brand is strong, the ones who need and want what you are offering will be able to identify that you are doing it from the heart.
You’d also be naturally led to a new ‘tribe’ of bonafide customers who will go out of their way to get what you are offering once you succeed in convincing them how THEY will benefit from purchasing.
Here’s the thing. Any transaction (using the term broadly here) must be two-sided in order to stand the test of time. Be it business, friendship, family, romantic. Nobody will stick around if there’s no trust, real communication or reciprocity.
If one person has the upper hand or stands to gain (or lose), the trust will eventually be eroded. Perhaps because there was no real communication to begin with. If the base is solid from the beginning and all points of view or concerns are given a chance to be properly communicated, then that’s the only way (in my opinion) that any business or personal relationship can endure despite distance and time.
Common backgrounds and ethos are a huge bonus, but it must be felt by both parties and obviously so. Anything else is fluff/window dressing. Businesses that last decades are usually based on a strong understanding and communication of core objectives to all stakeholders so it can shine through to customers.
If you don’t (yet) have a strong sense of Self, then you can’t fully know what you are for, what you are aiming to achieve, thus you can’t articulate your brand to anyone else and you’d (eventually end up) falling for anything.
You can’t fight to save something if you don’t know what you are fighting for.
On a closing note, here’s something to think about and look forward to.
Do you think you can stay consistent with your values/ethos/objectives in terms of:
- Profits (and how much to meet your current needs & future lifestyle wants)?
- Quality products & service?
- Benefits (usefulness/feel-good-feeling) associated with your product/service?
- After-care (to customers)?
- Employee and customer appreciation?
My next blog will be on how to maintain genuine service. Stay tuned.
If you’d like great copy written for your website, newsletter or a profile or feature written on a (new) product or service for your business, feel free to check out my website or Facebook page and let’s chat via email: email@example.com.