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25 November 2010

Marketing

The 10 Biggest Branding Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

  1. Failing to look into the future.

    In many instances, companies which are failing now have omitted to address the all-important question: "Who is my typical customer?" If their customer base consists only of those in the same generation as the MD, it's only a matter of time before profits will begin to plummet.

  2. Overcomplicating things.

    Too many products and services actually put customers off buying anything at all. Ever noticed how you can only take in so many different scents when you walk through the perfume department of Debenhams? Your nose can only take in so much - and your brain's no different. The current conservative estimate of maximum advertising messages a day is 100.

  3. Keeping your branding plans hush-hush.

    You're heading for disaster when only key people in the company know what your brand really means. But it's probably these very people - the MD and his chronies - who are less influential in communicating brand identity than perhaps anyone else. Ensure everyone knows how to reflect the brand, even in terms of their interactive behaviour with clients.

  4. Failing to be different.

    How many companies promise to deliver "high quality" goods with "excellent customer service". Practically all of them. If you really want this to be your message, make your mark in an industry where service or quality is notoriously bad, like Virgin Trains did (we'll save that debate for another time)

  5. Treating your customers like fools.

    Make your customers feel like heroes instead! Unhappy customers tell A LOT of people, so don't promise what you can't deliver. It's a lot easier to change an over-ambitious marketing message than a bad reputation.

  6. Cutting corners.

    An unimaginative, cheaply-produced stack of marketing material just won't cut it. So, the next time you're at a service station and see one of those "print your own business" cards machines, walk on by! The same goes for your website.

  7. Not knowing your customers' experience.

    Have you ever taken a walk through your company's customer experience from start to finish? This "invisible" element of your marketing arsenal is probably more instrumental in forming your brand in your customers' minds than anything else.

  8. Never inviting feedback

    How can you ever begin to know how people view your brand if you don't ask them? Do a test. Think about what specific kind of impression you want people to have of your company, then formulate a questionnaire around it. Send out questionnaires before you re-brand, then a few months afterwards. Spot the difference?

  9. Forgetting about your existing customers.

    As you'll no doubt have heard before, it costs 7 times as much to win a new customer than it does to hold onto the old ones. So in line with this, make sure you don't re-brand with only your customers of the future in mind.

  10. Not using FDC for all your re-branding and corporate identity requirements!

    Because we operate across the board - e-marketing, traditional marketing, graphic and web design - we can ensure consistency is achieved. Not only that, but we have the experience that will ensure your brand sends out the message that will keep customers flocking.

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