The basics of business, Pt 1.


Following on from a recent post on our social media platform here is the rest of the article.

Brand values are a way of reminding customers why they buy your products or services, and that`s essential to make your mark in a highly competitive modern world.

DYSON. Now there’s a brand, There was a time when all vacuum cleaners were known as “HOOVERS” but Sir James Dyson has swept that away.
It all started with his bag-less vacuum cleaners, which were instantly recognisable, then he moved on to other everyday products such as hand dryers that, incredibly, actually dried your hands instead of leaving the warm and damp.
This is a business dedicated to “solving problems others seem to ignore” – a philosophy that comes across clearly in everything Dyson produces, all their communication,
Their designs look and work differently to the norm, these brand values not only make Dyson stand out, but also create loyalty among its customers, in short, if you’re like their vacuum cleaner, you will love the hairdryer, air purifier and fan heaters…

So what, you may wonder, has this got to do with me and my business?

The answer is more than you think, it’s what makes the difference between a generic “me too” business and in that sets the standard, builds loyalty in its followings.
Lots of company’s make vacuum cleaners but only one makes Dyson.
And the same rules apply whether your in retail, wholesale, services or manufacturing.
Try not to fall into the trap of thinking that this is all about plastering your logo over every available surface. Of course, it’s important that people can recognise they are in the right place (under McDonald’s golden arches) or purchasing the latest gadget (with an Apple emblem ) that`s simply brand recognition.
Brand values are all about creating an emotional connection with the consumer.

I am fortunate to be near a distribution outlet for the “family” bread firm Warburtons.
Warburtons is one of Britain’s biggest bakers, it’s also a family-owned and run business, with a history going back some 140yrs.
“Family” features prominently in its advertising and all communications – this makes a huge corporation appear friendly, caring and approachable.
Head over to its website to see this in action, not only does this make it different from its main competitor (Allied Bakeries -which makes, Kingsmill and RHM which makes Hovis) it also creates an emotional connection with its customers.
When the customers see a Warburtons loaf on a shelf they`ll recognise it as the “Family bakers” and put it in their trolleys.

It is`not groundbreaking domestic appliance makers or “Family Bakers” who have Brand values – you can have them too …..

Chances are you haven’t as there are far more pressing daily distractions when you’re running a business. You have probably got a logo, website, maybe a Facebook and twitter page, you may even have Instagram and LinkedIn. Perhaps you go as far as to send out email newsletters, you might reasonably feel that you have your marketing sorted?
However, get the tone wrong and it will all fall on deaf ears.

All of Dysons marketing revolves around how technology makes your life easier. Everything looks and sounds hi-tech and based on cutting edge design.
At the other end of the spectrum, Warburtons is a bright, colourful, family-friendly and wholesome.
Heritage brands, like Barbour, use the traditional colours and language to underline their values.
These organisations understand and realise the benefits this brings to their business, and you can use the same techniques to engage with your customers, without spending huge amounts of time and money.

Ask the following questions of your business?

  • What is my style of business?? Technological, family orientated, heritage, or something else (sporty for example)
  • When writing content for my website, newsletters or social media, which tone will i use that my customers will respond to ? (scientific, friendly, traditional, high end)
  • Which colours should i use for my website newsletters, social media, graphics etc to convey my type of business? ( Neutral works well for tech, while bright and bold works for family and classic tones reflect heritage, Bright colours also imply sporty and high energy,.) If you have a showroom then colours are critical.

In simple terms, brand values are a way of reminding customers why they buy your products and services. And that’s essential in the highly competitive modern world, where other businesses will constantly try to temp customer away with offers and incentives.

Remember, a customer is for life, not just a marketing campaign.

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