I’ve been thinking a lot about branding lately. It’s because there are a lot more elements we have to be thinking about in new marketing that we may not have had to think about in such a way or to such an extent before.
A few weeks ago it was on the Voice Brand. Closely related is the idea of your Emotional Brand.
There’s always been an emotional component to your brand (or there should have been, at least).
But now it’s different than what it meant 15 years ago. Then, it was a uni-directional connection, and generally the emotions were connected to how people felt about product or service performance or how your advertising campaign made them feel. The emotions weren’t tied to the things we’re all talking about now: conversation, engagement. All of those terms have different meanings in new marketing.
Now you have a bi-directional relationship with your customer, the emotional connection to your brand is more than liking your products. It goes beyond a one-way connection, and becomes a give-and-take relationship.
These emotions can work both ways for you. Take two long-standing social media examples:
- Zappos. Mashable even said “your relationship IS your brand” when discussing Zappos. Spot on. Zappos has been able to develop strong and positive relationships not only with existing customers, but with non-existing ones as well (many of whom I’d be willing to bet are now loyal Zappos users).
- Motrin. Now, granted, you don’t want to get me started on the response by the actual mom’s in this situation, so we’ll leave that alone (I disagree with it, plainly put). However, the social media response (or lack thereof) on the part of Motrin was at best weak, and at worst late and irritating for the angry crowd it needed to talk to. What did that do? Increased the negative emotions even more. This is where the response part of the brand wasn’t effective enough to mend the relationship.
A more recent example (still in play) is Domino’s Pizza Turnaround Campaign, which I think is working pretty darn well for them. This is a case where the saw their relationship with customers declining for reasons unrelated to social media (basic quality) and they’ve launched a relationship management program that’s reinvigorating the emotions of their eaters (or non-eaters) in positive ways.
The way you choose to handle the relationships with your audience members will be a big determinate in how your brand is perceived, and the types of emotions they’ll have towards your brand.
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