Take Lessons from Big Business When Building Your Brand
Building a strong brand is essential in order to stay ahead of the competition and standing out from the crowd has become increasingly difficult. Companies like Apple, GE, and UPS have continued to skyrocket their success staying true to their brands, while other companies have drowned out the unique value of their brand with over-branding. Companies are warned about the risks of pouring money into senseless advertising, bombarding their customers with too many messages, billboards, and products in order to build revenue and make a quick sale. Ultimately, companies that over-brand end up overlooking the needs of their customers and create resentment toward their own brand or scare consumers away. Brands like Dell, Blackberry, and MTV have all crossed the line with over branding and have lost sales and customers in recent years. If you feel your company may be destroying more value than it is creating, consider these tips for branding your business.
Listen to the Customer
Don’t lose sight of the real reasons your customers signed on with your brand to begin with. Continue to give customers the opportunity to provide feedback. Companies can be very quick to bombard their customers with unnecessary messaging, advertising, and constant in-your-face techniques. Many times, these companies stop listening to their customers and start losing them. In a recent study by mediapost.com, General Mills was identified as a great example of a company that has been around for years and still takes the time to listen to their customers. Known as one of the nation’s largest producers of breakfast cereals, General Mills has been very active with analytic tools and market research. Over the past couple years, General Mills has listened to the needs of their customers, and they have responded adequately, resulting in a 30% increase in sales.