Posted by Martin Nixon
21 July, 2015

I’m really not much of a fan of blog posts that claim to provide the top three, five or even ten things you can do to help build a successful brand.

But despite that, I felt it might be beneficial to provide an insight into how we help our clients ensure their organisations resonate with customers and add value to their brands. I hope you’ll find it useful.

I should perhaps begin by reaffirming our long-held belief that brand should be at the heart of your business. Brand is not your logo, product or service; it’s what people say about you when you leave the room. So think about the promises you make to your various audiences, and consider how good you are at keeping them. What would your customers say about you? If you don’t know, perhaps you should find out.

1. Build trust

Would you choose to spend time with someone you don’t trust? Well, it’s the same with brands – whether you operate a luxury hotel or a small local garage. When you say you’re going to do something, do it to the very best of your ability. Trust is the key to all great relationships. Building trust builds brand loyalty: if your customers can rely on you, they’ll never go elsewhere and they’ll also tell their friends.

2. Be consistent

You know that sad feeling when you visit a favourite restaurant or café, only to realise it isn’t quite as great as the last time you ate there? Consistency doesn’t just apply to the hospitality sector. In order to build trust in your brand you need to perform exceptionally well, every time.

3. Never assume anything

This is the motto that Sir Paul Smith lives by; and if it’s good enough for him, then in my view we can all benefit. Essentially, if you’ve gone to the trouble to plan something, take the trouble to check it. You’ll save yourself all the pain and hassle of it all going wrong – hopefully!

4. Know your customer

This may sound simplistic; and it is really. If you want to win your customers’ hearts and minds, you need to know the colour of their eyes, as well as their likes, dislikes and habits. With this knowledge you can build a brand experience that they’ll respond to. It’s simple really: no customers = no business.

5. Ask for feedback, warts and all

True leaders rarely listen to sycophants; they prefer to hear how they could improve their performance and become better at whatever they’re doing. If you ask your happy clients about the one thing you could do better, they’ll tell you – what’s more, they’ll stay happy clients for the long term.

6. Be different!

So, this blog post is called the top five tips – and do you see what I’ve done here? You can stand out simply by being distinctive. Why emulate every other Tom, Dick or Harriet when you can differentiate yourself and gain competitive advantage? We’re all bombarded with similar products and services, so ask yourself what makes your brand unique. Once you’ve found out, tell the world.