In a previous post, I talked about the cool, capable, creative…and Brand-confused John Red Stone—a micro-entrepreneur musician who was a devastating case study in not understanding one’s Brand.
Your Brand is your promise—a promise of how you will behave in good time…and bad. Why promise your customer something about which they don’t care?
With that question in mind, let’s zoom back from micro-entrepreneurs to the enterprise with a graphic (thank you IBM) showing how massive Brand confusion exists for many, many…many companies. On the right, why firms think customers follow them on social media…and on the left, why customers actually follow. Just a little shocking, no?
Notice companies think customers care about companies: “People want to know about us and our products.” But customers actually care about themselves: “How can I get a better deal on my purchases and know I’m buying the right product?”
Companies who do not understand their own Brand promise cannot deliver what customer want. In this case, companies put the wrong things on their social media sites because they don’t know what matters.
What is your Brand promise? Are you clear about how it influences your daily decisions? Are every one of your employees clear about how your Brand guides…and sets boundaries…on how they will behave…every single day?
- You cannot deliver on a Brand promise that matters to customers if you don’t know what matters to customers.
- You cannot trust history, your colleagues, or conventional wisdom to tell you what customers value.
- The only way to know what customers value? Ask them. And not in the context of selling when their barriers are up. You must even be careful when only using quantitative, multiple-choice surveys (at least in the beginning) because you may not even offer the right response choices.
- What customers value can change. If you are special, you are special in the context of your competition or other choices your customer can make. As they change, your value changes. Ask again.
What if you truly don’t know what it is about your offering that really matters? And what if you don’t have the people to ask customers outside of a selling situation? Give us a call. We do this all the time and are happy offer suggestions.