There are new risks to your brand coming in 2014, such as the opening of one market in ASEAN or the more heightened consumer vigilance on the internet, that makes not just your products but your entire value chain, susceptible to scrutiny by various stakeholders.
Is your marketing and business development plan ready to take on these new variables? Are you playing by old rules that are now considered myths?
Customer who cry are customers who buy
A lot of brands nowadays judge the success of their campaign purely on its aesthetic and emotional value. However, it’s important to ensure that you are able to use your creative, emotional campaigns to drive customers from touch-point to touch-point, eventually culminating in sales.Especially among startups, which comprise a number of our clients, it’s absolutely crucial for the tactics to be working together to achieve not just marketing and communications objectives, but also business objectives.
The product is the brand
Many brands nowadays think that their product alone makes the brand. What many fail to realize is that all touch-points which carry the brand’s name is the brand – whether it’s the retail store, the sales associates, the website, or the Facebook. Customers do not perceive the brand as being run by different people. To them, the brand is the brand and so the tonality, feel and personality must be consistent across all touch-points. More importantly, you can leverage all touch-points to create consumer delight and convert customers into brand ambassadors.”
The customer is always right
Blindly following market research is not the best way to use your exhaustively gathered data. Market research should be used to verify and calibrate your decisions, not make them for you. Why does your market behave or think this way, and what can you do to change it? What underlying trends drive consumer preferences, and how can you leverage them in new and innovative ways? You need to be able to read between the lines and pick apart the threads to be able to uncover true transformative marketing insights that will allow you change market perceptions and drive the market.
Brands break the bank
Big budgets aren’t necessary to build big brands. What is most important is that you remain true to your brand’s values and personality and structure your strategies to support your business objectives. Not everyone operates with the same marketing budgets as telcos or FMCGs, but that doesn’t mean that your marketing has to be any less impactful. In fact, this challenges you to find new ways to interact with and engage your customers aside from your traditional marketing activations.
Brand is marketing’s problem
Many companies consider brand as marketing’s purview, or worse, brand as a nice-to-have, which is secondary to the bottom line. However, it is important to consider that your product will always have its own brand, even without marketing, and that this is developed through the various efforts of the rest of your organization – HR via the persons that they hire, manufacturing via the materials used and the build quality. Your investment in your brand doesn’t end with your marketing. It factors into how you allocate your resources towards the creation of brand experiences that support the brand you are trying to build. Each member of the organization should have a very clear idea of the brand they are trying to build and support it.
Amor Maclang is the Communications Strategist & Brand Architect of the GeiserMaclang Network.