The other day I was looking for someone who could do customized beddings for me and as with most people today, the first place I started this journey was on Social Media. I landed on a business that had a lot of positive reviews, with customers raving about the quality of work they received from this business. This was more than enough to convince me, so I made the call. And just like that, I had already developed an expectation of what I thought I wanted to experience.
That is exactly what a brand promise is. It is the implied commitment to deliver a certain experience. Unlike a tagline which is clearly communicated to your customers, the brand promise is not directly articulated to the external audiences. It is experienced!
So here I was, having read the rave reviews on social media, expecting the world. After some back and forth, a deposit had been paid and the specifications I sought had been provided to the vendor. When I didn’t receive a call on the expected date of delivery, I was quick to forgive as I assumed that they were busy dealing with other customer deliveries that had come before me. After another week or so, I finally received my consignment!
You can imagine my disappointment when the beddings were of the wrong size. How was this even possible? Still, I remained optimistic. In any case, the explanation I received that they had just employed a new set of workers to tailor the beddings seemed to make sense. And so, the wait continued. This time however, I was not as confident or as enthusiastic as I was the first time.
In the same way, if you fail to deliver on the expected or perceived brand experience, your customers might be forgiving and perhaps even give you a chance to redeem yourself. The actions you take as you redeem yourself will become the determining factor that will either make or break your brand. What is important to remember is that every action that does not live up to the declared or implied promise of your brand, means that you are simply eating away at the trust that your customers have bestowed on you.
Back to my story, the day I was to receive my redone beddings came and believe it or not, while they were much better than what had initially been delivered the first time, they still did not meet my requirements. By this time, I was tired of the back and forth and I figured I would live with whatever I could endure and what I did not like was to be returned to the shop for them to sell to another customer. I was looking forward to making subsequent orders but after this, I was done!
To build on your brand’s promise, you must be able to consistently deliver on what the customer’s expectation is. Delivering on the brand promise is usually an internally driven process that requires employee understanding and buy in for it to succeed. If the employees do not understand the customer’s expectation, then trouble will soon arise.
How well is your brand promise communicated to your employees?
I highly suspect this may have been the case for this business. The new workers had not been well trained or informed of the expected way of doing things to ensure they delivered on the promise the owner had created for the brand. Your employees need to be soo sold out on the brand and its promises that they draw their inspiration from it.
I equate the brand promise to the brand’s moral compass the same way God (or the Bible) is an individual’s moral compass. I mean, what good is a man of God without his bible? What good then is the brand without its brand promise?
As a business owner, is what you claim for your brand consistent with what your customers say about the brand? Or are they experiencing a very different reflection of your brand?
Evaluate yourself today and make sure your reflection matches what you say about your brand.
It is the consistent follow through of your brand promise that will make you Standout 4 Growth.