For your brand to resonate with the market, you must consider every way your brand touches prospective and current customers. This includes: customer service, support, accounting, shipping as well as traditional communication such as collateral, advertising, public relations, etc. To develop a real brand strategy, all elements of a company’s external marketing must mesh seamlessly with what the customer will experience with any other part of the organization.

How the Relationship With Your Customer Affects Brand vs. Product

One key question we’re often asked is should we invest in creating a brand for the company or for the product? Knowing when to invest in creating a brand for a product vs. having an umbrella brand for the company, is an important decision. Start by answering these four questions:

  1. Is the long-term relationship with customers and prospects going to be based on the company promise or the product?
  2. Will your customers buy additional products from you because of their relationship with you or because of the previous product they bought?
  3. How quickly will the product become obsolete or will it be relatively timeless?
  4. Will you be more than a one-product company?

When your funds are limited and your answers lean more toward creating a preference for the company as opposed to preference on a singular product, invest your efforts around conceiving and delivering on a promise of value and experience around the company.  As part of this work, your remember that creating a brand has an emotional components.

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Branding includes the Emotional Association the Customer has with Your Company

While you may be adamant your solutions are truly unique, oftentimes customers cannot really discern functional differences. Sometimes the only way a company or solution stands out is by creating a unique emotional connection with the customer. If you believe branding is merely about your logo, corporate identity, website, collateral or advertising and/or the vehicle you use to deliver your messages, you may end up very disappointed.

You will need a clear plan with built-in checkpoints and success metrics to keep everyone focused on turning the words of your brand promise into a real customer experience. Without a customer-centric brand strategy, you run the risk of turning your branding efforts into a set of communication tactics.

Brand Loyalty as a Measure of Customer Experience

The Emotional Components of Your Brand Impact Customer Loyalty, Experience and Engagement.

Measure the Emotional Side of Brand Loyalty

There are a variety of ways to measure customer loyalty and engagement. All approaches involve asking customers to report how loyal they are to a brand/product.  While the answers to this question yields important information and insights, when people answer this question directly, they provide a cognitive and rational response.

There are also emotional components to brand loyalty.  Sometimes people may not even be aware of their emotional attachment.  Anyone who has been “upset” by a change to a key brand attribute, for example terminating or changing a flavor or process, is having an “emotional” reaction that can potentially and unconsciously impact loyalty.  It is important for marketers to understand and measure the emotional side of brand loyalty.

So how can we understand and measure what affects the emotional side of loyalty?

Here is one approach:

  1. Create a list of the positive and negative associations that affect the emotional side.  This could be a color, communication channel, touch point, or even a distribution partner.
  2. Pair the associations.  For example, present service options associated with the same key words/phrases of the brand promise and ask customers to select the matching tagline.
  3. Measure the response time.  The longer it takes the respondent to identify the correct tagline, the more the service options captured their attention and delayed them from clicking on the tagline.  It may be a very short delay, but the reaction time is measurable and meaningful.

We help our customers use approaches such as these to discover which associations have the greatest impact, and compare associated in terms of their relative strength.  We’d love to help you too!


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