Managing your brand image How valuable is your company brand?
Every company has an image that it wants and an image that it currently projects in the eyes of consumers. The image that a company wants may, unfortunately, differ from what it actually conveys to its customers. That is why consistent brand management is important to reduce the gap and align customer perceptions with your business vision. And don’t think that managing a brand is important only for big companies. SMEs can greatly benefit from a impeccable brand image.
Before creating or revamping your brand image, take the time to reflect on your strengths and weaknesses as well as your brand promise and the actions you take to deliver on that brand promise. All of these points make up the foundation of your brand image and reputation.
A good brand image creates added value—not only for your company and clients but also for your employees. Thanks to your brand image, your employees should feel inspired and engaged. This way, they’ll become your brand’s biggest ambassadors. Once all of your stakeholders—employees, clients and partners—are aligned with your brand, your business will start experiencing its positive effects.
What are the advantages of having a good company brand?
- A good brand image facilitates business development with investors, future clients, partners and suppliers.
- A company with a successful brand carves an enviable, leadership position in its market.
- A business that is recognized and appreciated by target markets can attract and appeal to more customers.
- A strong brand distances a company from its competition.
- Long-standing and trustworthy relationships with a brand can help a company weather a crisis.
- Although a direct link is difficult to establish, a successful brand can have an impact on your revenues.
Your brand: A symbol of trust and expertise
According to J.A. Quelch, a former marketing professor at Harvard Business School, “brands exist because consumers want quality—even though they have neither the time nor ability to analyze every single option out in the market. Brands simplify the buying process, particularly in saturated markets.”Therefore, strategically managing your brand means that you will raise awareness among customers, who in turn will have more confidence in your offering and pick your product or service instead of other competitors.
In fact, a good, solid reputation creates value for a business; it becomes a competitive advantage to increase sales, attract new talent and renowned partners, and strengthens ties with various levels of government. However, you need to ensure that your messages are coherent and effectively communicated by all of your teams. Oftentimes, different teams convey different messages, which can negatively impact your reputation.
Your brand cannot take care of itself. You must make the decision that managing your brand is a business priority, investing time and money to align it with your company’s vision, clients and ever-evolving market. Continuously monitor your organization’s position in the market place and make sure your brand remains relevant in the eyes of your customers and employees. Your brand should evolve over time and follow the latest trends—all while maintaining its very essence.
Gouvernement du Québec. Développer et gérer sa marque. Ministère du Développement économique, Innovation et Exportation. https://www.economie.gouv.qc.ca/fileadmin/contenu/publications/outils_aide/gestion_entreprise/DDE_Marque_Approb.pdf. 2009.
Rodgers, Caroline. Gestion de la marque : au-delà du nom et du logo. La Presse. http://affaires.lapresse.ca/pme/201010/12/01-4331800-gestion-de-la-marque-au-dela-du-nom-et-du-logo.php. October 12, 2010.
Libaert Thierry et Johannes, Karine. La communication corporate. Éditions Dunod. Paris 2010. P.40-43.
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