5 key reasons to invest in creating your brand values to make them "sing"
Having spent most of the week writing a seminar for the #Quickbooks Connect Conference on the importance of brand building, the reasons to invest in your brand, and in particular your brand values, was never more in sharp focus for me...
...that is until I received an email where I was brought down to earth with a hefty bang:
"Sorry, my clients have already had a quick meeting the other day to create their values, and they're done and dusted. They don't need you"
I truly hope that the session was successful and inspiring for all involved. I hope too that the values that they developed resonated for all. With any luck they'll be deeply personal, so personal in fact that you can almost hear each individual saying them as if they were their own. After all, the days of talking about authenticity, trust and any other number of "fat" generic words must truly be over.
A brand is akin to a living being: it has an identity and personality, name, culture, vision, emotion and intelligence so that the user or purchaser can connect on a more personal rather than rational level
So why is it important to make them "sing"? Why should it really matter to a business?
Let's put this into context a little. If we look at the world around us, we notice 2 things in particular. One, individuals are looking for more meaning in their lives which is why the desire for experiences are increasingly important across all channels where a brand interacts with its customer. And two, we are living in such a digitally enabled world that our socializing and our relationships are developed as much online as off. Never has there been a need to bring more of a human touch to a brand so that the relationship that it has with its customer is more personal. And personal means more valuable. And longer term.
70% of users who feel a connection with a brand spend twice as much as those who don’t
Let's be clear, your Brand values are a set of guiding principles that shape every aspect of your business. They're placed at the very core of your brand and are there to dictate your brand message, look and personality. Seth Rodin sums this up beautifully:
“A brand’s value is merely the sum total of how much extra people will pay, or how often they choose the expectations, memories, stories and relationships of one brand over the alternatives.”
The benefits of having brand values which really mean something are fundamental:
Benefit #1: Brand values help your business to define its unique and can ensure that it stands out from the competition. We all look to find our own niche in the market and being rigorous about choosing the right values is key to this
Benefit #2: Brand values help your customers to understand why they need your product or service when let's face it a lot of offers are the same, and why they should pay a premium price for it. If the brand speaks to them then they will choose your brand and pay more for the privilege (you only have to look at Apple as an example).
Benefit #3: Done correctly your brand values will help to create a culture of super motivated and high-performance teams who have a purpose and are more loyal and motivated in their roles as a result.
Benefit #4: Having clear values can help to attract and retain the right high-calibre talent specifically for your business which in turn will help you to save on costly recruitment bills. Recruitment is becoming a core stumbling block for many and I know of clients who have decided to sell up because they just couldn't cope with the endless looking.
Benefit #5: Your brand brings a value beyond the nuts and bolts of your business, Only last week I was told by a client that they had sold their business and had achieved a higher value because of the status of their brand within the sector
So ask yourself these questions when you are thinking about your own brand:
- Have your brand values been developed with the care and attention that they deserve?
- Is your team clear on the brand's values and are they living these values every day?
- Do you use your brand values to guide your business? Are they useful in defining what would work and what would not for your brand?
- Are they easy to remember? Do they slip off the tongue as though it's something you'd say naturally?
- Do you find yourself referring to your brand values yourself and with your team members and employees?
- Do employees articulate them themselves in their every day?
- Are your values truly unique to you or could another brand say similar?
- Do you, your team and your employees have a universal understanding of the rationale behind the values and are they correctly able to describe why they were chosen and what they mean?
- Do your customers and clients know what you stand for even when you are out of the room?
- Do you have customers calling you saying they love your brand and what it stands for? Does it talk to them?
- Do you have brand fans who stay with you through thick and thin?
- Are your values shaping all of your marketing communications and your customer journey? Are they guiding you in what you should do to truly resonate with the customer?
- Do your values shape your customer service and everything that you do for the customer?
If you'd like to know more then get in touch. If you're interested in hearing more about how the power of brand is vital for you as #accountants then join me at #QBConnect on 4 March. For tickets click here: https://uk.quickbooksconnect.com/?