Brand identity is what keeps clients coming back

Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2018 by Jessica Salerno

By Rebecca Kerr, OSCPA communications intern

A company’s brand is like the cover of a book; people are going to make a quick judgment about it almost immediately. The brand is a potential customer’s first encounter with the company and it often means the difference between picking it up or setting it back on the shelf.

In a recent Forbes article titled “Creating an Authentic Brand Experience: 3 Key Takeaways from the 2018 Unbound Miami Festival,” Elena Bajic, founder and CEO of Ivy Exec., details what she believes are the most important points discussed on a panel about branding.

Her top three takeaways include:

  1. Brands need to have a core identity that resonates with their customers
  2. Customers have expectations: it’s not just about your product, it’s also about your commitment (social or political)
  3. You must be part of the meaningful dialogue with customers

First and foremost, your products or services are not enough to keep customers or clients coming back. When it comes to customer retention, a positively received brand is everything. The products could be the best on the market, but if the company brand is unauthentic, unidentifiable or uninteresting, the contents will likely be ignored and dismissed.

In terms of the first takeaway, a company’s values, mission and target audience must align with one another and make sense for the company. In addition, these aspects of the brand need to be upheld when anything from the company is released. Everything in association with the company has to be representative of these areas and promote a positive view of the company.

When it comes to Bajic’s next takeaway, positive association is pivotal to the longevity and success of any company’s brand. In the age of fast traveling news and social media, it is becoming more essential in the eyes of customers for companies to show an interest in and concern for the state of the world. Customers want to know companies they support care about what they care about, which can be achieved through Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) work or company initiatives. For example, Starbucks recently announced their initiative to fully eradicate plastic straws in their stores by the year 2020. Now, it is not surprising that many consumers positively associate Starbucks with sustainability.

Lastly, as the third takeaway suggests, it is essential for a company to be reachable to their customers. In order to survive in the market, companies have to be responsive and open to both positive and negative feedback, while also recognizing that their brand can always be improved and altered to better fit the current needs of their customers. If done correctly, these takeaways could ultimately keep your “book” from collecting dust on the shelf.

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