Are You Sabotaging Your Own Brand?
Brands are delicate things that need to be handled with the utmost care. They need to be managed and developed, bearing in mind they have a lot to do with how a business is perceived. The actions you take in managing a brand can either help it grow or lead to its demise.
Sometimes the demise of a brand is a result of the actions of other businesses and brands. It may be that a brand fails due to losing out to the competition and other brands driving it out of business. At other times however, the actions that lead to the detriment of a brand are of the owner’s own making.
Your actions have a great impact on the direction of your brand is going to take and determine its future success. Without realising it, you may be involved in the act of sabotaging your brand. These are some of the acts that will eventually lead to its downfall. The following is a list of 7 ways you may be sabotaging your own brand.
1. Not Treating Customers Right
Your customers are the reason you are in business and it is therefore crucial that you treat them right. This means treating them with courtesy at every point of interaction. Failing to do so is one way to sabotage your own brand.
Whenever there is an issue of contention with your customers, it is in your best interest to have the matter resolved as quickly and as amicably as possible. You may not agree with the saying that the customers is always right, but you should treat them in a way that makes them feel that they are.
Failing to manage the relationship between your customer and your brand can spell disaster for your brand. The opinions that your customers have about your brand are very important and if they are negative, they can quickly escalate into the destruction of the perception of that brand in the eyes of customers.
2. Not Listening To Your Customers
You should not make the mistake of ignoring your customers and start listening to what they have to say about your brand if you are to avoid sabotaging your own brand. Putting your own perceptions about your brand, aside pay close attention to the public opinion.
The way the public sees your brand is what is going to decide how successful it is in the market. As an owner, you are too close to see your brand objectively. This is why you have to rely on the perceptions in the public eye.
Listening to your customers will help you build better products and services and serve them better in the process. It is important to remember that the purpose of your brand is to serve customers in the best way and listening to them is the best way to do that.
3. Not Understanding Who Your Clients Base Is
Just as it is important to listen to your customers and treat them right, it is important that you understand who your client base is. There are many people with many opinions out there and it is not possible to serve all of them. At least not at the risk of spreading your business thin.
You need to identify your client base so that you know who to pay attention to and therefore serve them well. If you do not do this, you risk trying to serve everybody and this is simply not practical and a sure way to sabotage your own brand.
Knowing your client base allows your business to identify their unique and particular needs and can hence serve that client base better. With a better understanding of who you are serving, your business will be better able to manage its reputation and hence brand.
4. Lacking Consistency and Delivering Below Promise
Consistency is a critical element of brand management. Consistency is what gives value to the promise your business makes to its customers. If your business lacks consistency, customers will not be certain of what to expect when they interact with your band.
Creating the proper brand expectation through consistency is important if you are to avoid sabotaging your own brand. Customers should know, without a shadow of a doubt, that they can expect the same level of quality and service every time they come into contact with your brand.
Maintaining these expectations also means that you should deliver according to promise, or even better, deliver above promise. It is a mistake for your brand to over-promise and then under-deliver. It is better to under-promise and then surprise the customer by over-delivering.
5. Not Developing A Marketing Strategy
Selling is a critical activity for any business and marketing is the complementary activity that goes along with it. To avoid sabotaging your own brand, your business needs to come up with a well thought out marketing strategy.
A well thought out marketing strategy need some research to figure out what approaches are likely to yield results. This means that you have to carry out experiments to determine which marketing approach works.
In the world of today, you need to come up with an online marketing strategy alongside your offline marketing strategy. This means coming up with a website that supports your strategy and integrating it with social media approaches. Your marketing strategy should be integrated with all operations and platforms.
6. Not Segmenting The Market
It is a mistake to think of the market as being made up of only one type of customer and doing so is one sure way to sabotage your own brand. You need to segment the market in order to understand the types of customers that your business will encounter every day.
Market segmentation is the the process of dividing the market into various segments, allowing your business to focus of a particular section of the market that has similar characteristic or responds in a certain way to marketing efforts depending on the segement. You may choose to segment by age or income, for example.
Segmenting the market allow your business to reach people more effectively and therefore elicit a better market response. When people respond well to your marketing efforts, your brand benefits and is built up in the process
7. Ignoring Social Media
The last way in which you could be sabotaging your brand is through social media or the lack of it. Social media has a great impact on our daily lives. Even if you do not spend hours and hours on social media, I can guarantee that a large chunk of your customer base does. Choosing not to use social media is another way to sabotage your own brand.
Since a lot of people are spending a significant amount of time on social media, it only makes sense that you engage with them on these platforms. The best place to engage people is where they normally hang out. That is why social media is so important to the development of your brand.
Social media management can be carried out by yourself or you can hire someone to do it. Whether you hire someone to do social media for your business or you do it yourself, the most important thing for your brand is to stay actively engaged and involved with your customers.