Your Brand is everything!|
From Becoming A Category Of One - How Extraordinary Companies Transcend Commodity And Defy Comparison
by Joe Calloway
Your brand is not your advertising. Your brand is not your logo. Your brand is not your company name. Your brand is not your product. Your brand may not be at all what you think it is. Your brand may not be what you intend for it to be. You do not own your brand.
Your brand is owned by your customers and anyone else who has an impression of your company. Your brand resides in the minds of your customers, not in your newspaper ads. Your brand is whoever customers think you are, whatever they think is your promise to them, and whether or not they believe that you keep that promise. .
Nothing is more important than your brand, because it's what defines you in the marketplace. It should be the top priority of every employee, from the president of the company to the guys and gals in the warehouse to the receptionist and every other employee, to build, protect, and represent your brand to the best of their ability. If your idea of who you are, what you promise the marketplace, and whether or not you keep that promise matches up with the market's perception of those same factors, then you have a strong brand. A strong brand is what makes you a Category of One company. Your brand is everything. .
Never forget that it's your customers who decide what your brand really is. If your idea of the brand is different than their idea of the brand, theirs is the only idea that counts. At the end of the day they are the ones who get to vote, not you. It's a simple as the basic truth that not matter how well you think you're doing, all that counts is how well the customers think you're doing. You can run ads all day long about what a great company you are, but if the customers don't experience that and don't believe it, your brand is a loser. .
You want customers to love you, not just know who you are. You literally have as many brands as you have customers and people who have an impression of you. If those impressions are bad, then your brand is weak. Consider all the brands that you may have created without even knowing it:
It's not the job of the marketing, advertising, or public relations departments to create the brand. They have a hand in it, just like everyone else in the company. But their job is to tell the story of the brand. It's the job of everyone else in the company to create the brand with the quality of how they do their work everyday. For years people defined branding as the process of creating an ad campaign or marketing program that will convey a desirable image to the public. That's fine as far as it goes and these efforts can certainly help the brand. But it's nothing when compared to the power of how people actually experience your company. That's your brand.
It takes an on-going commitment to brand to take yours to the Category of One level. It doesn't happen by accident. Once brand takes hold, however, with proper attention it becomes the essence of who you are and what you do. It transcends policy, which enables you to transcend commodity. Brand becomes the way you do everything, almost without thinking.
Brand is everything. One more time - it should be the top priority of every employee to build, protect, and represent your brand to the best of their ability.
Copyright Joe Calloway. All Rights Reserved.
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