Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Building a brand starts in the trash

I was walking today in my neighborhood. It was recycle day and most people had their receptacles out. As I walked, I started noticing what kind of bins were used, what was in them, and I realized this is a lot like branding.

You see, I started making decisions and opinions about people by their recycling waste. One person had tied all their magazines in string. I was impressed. Another had put their recycling in a PLASTIC garbage bag. I was not impressed. Still others had junk food boxes in them, and that created a snap judgment. Some had stuff that clearly was not recyclable. Puh-leaze!

Then I would look down their driveway, check out their cars, their yards, the entire package. And that's when I knew-- this is how people judge and create their image of a brand. Every little thing is looked at and a judgment is made.

So it is as a brand. Everything you do, every piece of communication, letterhead, brochure, webinar banner ad, everything, MUST convey the image you want your brand to have.

Times are tough right now and marketers are trying to save money. And in doing so might consider taking on some things in-house.

But do you really want to design that landing page yourself or write that direct mail letter? Are you trained and experienced in the true art of writing with a marketing bent? In professional design? Because I promise you that when you put out something that deviates from or degrades your existing brand, it is logged into the brain of all those who see it. And a judgment is made.

A customer might now think, "Oh, I really think that looks cheap. Maybe the company isn't doing good. Maybe their quality isn't as good."

Think I am being dramatic here? Go for a walk, and tell me you aren't looking at homes, yards, people, pets, whatever and making a little tick mark in your brain. As subtle as it might be, you do it. We all do. It is programmed into us. We learn to do that. It's not that I am some overly judgmental person or snob. I am pretty down to earth actually.

So be true to your brand. Let your agency or marketing firm do what they know how and are trained to do. And listen to them when they say, be consistent, be consistent in every tiny little thing. Because potential and existing customers are watching.

No comments:

Post a Comment