Saturday, April 29, 2017

3 Ways To Build A Good Customer-Brand Relationship


Building a good customer-brand relationship is astonishingly simple. It’s doing the work consistently over time that can be a challenge.
  • Keep your promise: Deliver quality products and services, on time and just as requested.
  • Be responsive: You probably spend a lot of time and money getting your name out there, but are you ready when people express interest? When they have a problem with what you’ve sold? Delays, poor communication and failing to solve the problem really irritate people and can eliminate business you’ve worked extremely hard to get.
  • Set limits: Many people think that customer service means you have to give people everything they want. Not true. You can tell people “I will be able to do this much, for this amount” and they will be fine with that. Problems arise mainly when you overpromise (or are unclear about the promise) and underdeliver.
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Originally posted to Quora by Dannielle Blumenthal, Ph.D. All opinions are the author's own. This is a personal account unrelated to and not sponsored by the author's employer or any other entity. Photo via Pixabay (Public Domain).

Thursday, April 13, 2017

How To Respond Effectively To A Brand Crisis: 3 Recent Lessons from Pepsi, United Airlines and Sean Spicer



Recently we've seen a few well-known brands stumble, and try to recover: Pepsi, with its commercial featuring Kendall Jenner; United Airlines, with its flat-footed treatment of a passenger removed from a flight due to overbooking; and the Trump Administration (Sean Spicer), with his fumbling/ignorant references to the Holocaust.

These are some of the most sophisticated people, and organizations in the world. So what can we learn from their mistakes? Briefly, here are 3 timeless lessons for others who may encounter a brand crisis -- meaning, a crisis that stretches beyond one incident to affect one's entire reputation:

  • Be Prepared: It is natural to avoid difficult discussions. Most of us superstitiously fear that if we plan for something bad to happen, then it will happen. I don't know if these brands were prepared in advance for a brand crisis, but to me it looked like they were caught off-guard. Unfortunately you just never know what can happen; the first step in responding effectively is to be ready beforehand.
  • Apologize Quickly: As it happens, I personally liked the Pepsi ad. I did not understand what exactly happened on the United flight, or why the passenger was so triggered. And it was clear that Mr. Spicer meant no harm with his comments. Either way -- right or wrong -- if you offended the public you have to get right with them, and fast. For you need them to trust that you care about what they think, especially when they perceive that you have crossed a line.
  • Avoid Impulsive Reactions: Just as it is natural to avoid planning for disaster, it's also natural to overreact. If you are a brand owner, keep in mind that handling a crisis is not the same thing as doing what your customer seems to want you to do. In your response to the situation, draw a clear line between reacting -- i.e., freaking out -- and responding -- i.e., managing the situation effectively. Stay calm and stay the course, if you're really doing the right thing; explain the logic of your actions. 

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By Dannielle Blumenthal, Ph.D. All opinions are the author's own. This is a personal account unrelated to and not sponsored by the author's employer or any other entity. The author shares this content for reuse under the Creative Commons 3.0 License. For more information: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us/. Public domain photo via Pixabay.

The Main Things Consumers Expect From Brands


Reposted from my answer at Quora.

I think if you as the brand owner make a promise, particularly a functional promise, you have to keep it to the maximum extent possible. For example if you sell a premium chocolate chip cookie, the ingredients should be top quality, not just the packaging and the advertising.

At the same time, the consumer expects that you will act with basic adherence to a value code. You can't go so far to deliver on the promise that you break your values. So for example, you should source the ingredients for the cookies from companies that (to the best of your knowledge) don't abuse their workers.

You can't deliver only the values, because then you have no brand.

And you can't deliver values and brand absent profit. So you have to find a sustainable way to make money too, or the business will go under.
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By Dannielle Blumenthal, Ph.D. All opinions are the author's own. This is a personal account unrelated to and not sponsored by the author's employer or any other entity. The author shares this content for reuse under the Creative Commons 3.0 License. For more information: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us/. Public domain photo by sasint via Pixabay.

On The Connection Between Customer Loyalty & Brand Equity


Reposted from my answer at Quora.

  1. Customer loyalty = they buy from you when they could buy from someone else (e.g. cheaper or more conveniently)
  2. Brand equity = the value attached to your name
  3. Brand equity = creates brand loyalty
  4. How you grow it = deliver the feeling of superior experience every time (may not be a true difference between products)

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By Dannielle Blumenthal, Ph.D. All opinions are the author's own. This is a personal account unrelated to and not sponsored by the author's employer or any other entity. The author shares this content for reuse under the Creative Commons 3.0 License. For more information: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us/. Public domain photo by Paelmer PhotoArts via Pixabay.

Why You Shouldn't Name Your Business After Yourself


This question was originally posed on Quora. Here's my response:

I tend to think that a separate name is better. The business name indicates a focus on the consumer. A business named after yourself seems narcissistic, unless the consumer is specifically buying because of your name is behind it.

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By Dannielle Blumenthal, Ph.D. All opinions are the author's own. This is a personal account unrelated to and not sponsored by the author's employer or any other entity. The author shares this content for reuse under the Creative Commons 3.0 License. For more information: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us/. Public Domain photo by JanBaby via Pixabay.

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