6 steps to overcoming Brand Limiters

Your current clients are a valuable resource for shaping your brand image

In Part 1, we outlined a number of the most important Brand Limiters that can prevent your clients from forming the perceptions of your business that you want them to have.

How can you avoid these Brand Limiters? Start by focusing on these key areas:

1) Segment the Market – Many brokers assume all business is good business, so they go after everything. But by segmenting the market by geography, industry, company size, etc., you can develop a stronger value proposition for your target market and communicate more effectively with potential clients.

2) Develop a Compelling Value Proposition – An important part of developing the value proposition is asking your current clients how they view your company. The value proposition should include:

  • Broad Positioning – Is your company’s focus customer intimacy, low cost provider or product/service innovation?
  • Specific Positioning – What makes your company unique compared to competitors?
  • Value Positioning – Are your products/services less expensive, more expensive or the same price as competitors? Why? What do clients get for the price they pay?

Read: Testimonials–let your clients close the sale for you

3) Create Key Messages – From your value proposition, develop key messages you will communicate to your target markets. These need to be compelling and differentiate you from your competition.

4) Communicate – The key to communication is to be consistent in your messaging. Studies show potential clients are exposed to communications up to six times before they become aware of it, so you must be consistent and persistent. You want to choose media that reach your target market at the least cost per exposure. And think beyond words: Your logo and graphic identity also communicate your desired brand.

Read: Plain language increases client satisfaction

5) Assure Operational Alignment – Your client-facing personnel must reinforce the key messages by what they say and do. If your value proposition says your company provides the best customer service, then your client-service personnel must fulfill this promise every day.

6) Evaluate and Adjust – At least yearly, you should evaluate if your branding is working. Ask clients how your company is performing on the attributes from your key messages. You should evaluate this on an absolute basis and compared to competitors. And over time look for trends in how clients view your company.

Make no mistake: Developing a strong brand is hard work.  But a strong brand can be your greatest asset in a crowded marketplace because it creates preference, and can expedite and increase sales.

Click here to read Part 1 of Brand Limiters.

Bill Fellows is the president of Top-of-Mind Branding, a marketing and branding consulting firm in Yardley, Pennsylvania, USA. He has held marketing positions with AIG and Munich Reinsurance America, and has worked as a consultant with other property/casualty companies. He has also worked for a number of business services companies. You can read his blog at www.whatisabrandhq.com. For more of Bill’s writing for citopbroker.com, click here.

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