Thursday, March 25, 2010

Don't Position Your Brand, Position Your Consumer

NO ONE CARES ABOUT YOUR BRAND! Really, they don't... Think about it. When was the last time you checked up on a brand's marketing spin, and purchased? Probably not that often these days. Customers aren't being "SOLD to" these days, they are buying. And buying means reviewing. And reviewing means trying to find CONSUMERS LIKE ME! This is the principle behind net promoter score, and if you don't know what that means, you haven't been paying attention to how people transact...


NPS is based on the fundamental perspective that every company's customers can be divided into three categories: Promoters, Passives, and Detractors. By asking one simple question — How likely is it that you would recommend [Company X] to a friend or colleague?

So I looked at a few websites to see how they are positioning consumers, and not their brand...

Let's take Specialized, a bike manufacturer, and one that has received thousands of dollars from me. First, their website; and the best part of their website: THE FREERIDE/DH SIDE - ah, the season is upon us... 



Here, they don't connect with the CONSUMER at all... Notice, there isn't a person "like me" on their site. They do have an unmasked rider, but that's about it. Thankfully, the bike is cool, so that's good... But, what Specialized lacks on their site, they make up for within the social networking space. Because the Specialized brand has been around for years, they already have a following on Facebook. For example, I just became a fan of the Demo Facebook fan page, created by a real person...


And, of course, just like with any brand, Specialized has created their own "official" FB page as well...


My point with all of this is GUESS WHERE I WENT to find information BEFORE I bought my Specialized Demo II? To the Specialized.com? NO! I went to these facebook pages, and connected with REAL consumers. Real users engaged me about their experiences... What's more, if real users are creating FB pages then it must say something about the brand anyway, right?

Mostly, the idea for this post came from a slideshare preso about TRUST. To me, this is the Net Promoter Score - if a user/consumer trusts your brand, they will tell their friends/join a FB page/become a fan/post about it/recommend/etc... The preso is below...




So, if you're a marketer and you're focusing on brand - STOP IT! Seth Godin paints in interesting picture with his "brand formula"...

...[Prediction of what to expect] times [emotional power of that expectation]...

He goes on to illustrate in his blog WHAT REALLY HAPPENED when he experienced X, Y or Z brand... 
If you want to grow a valuable brand, my advice is to keep awareness close to zero among the people you're not ready for yet, and build the most predictable, emotional experience you can among those that care about you.
In other words... WHO CARES ABOUT YOUR BRAND! It is all about the consumer experience... 
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