Top 10 Branding Mistakes is a three-part series featuring New York City Psychotherapist Dr Fern Kazlow, aka Dr K. This episode, is part three, but you do not need to listen to each episode in order, however when you have the time, please go back and listen to parts one and two.
Overview Parts 1 & 2
Part 1 (Ep 140):
1. Letting Others Define You
2. Not Backing Up Your Brand
Part 2 (Ep 165):
3. Not Having An Aligned Brand Strategy
4. Not Power Connecting
5. Not Infusing Your Brand Every Place
6. Failure To Lead Your Brand
In today's episode, part three, we will cover the last four branding mistakes.
7. Not Aligning Your Brand Culture
People are looking to do business with businesses that align with their values, but it must be authentic and consistent; otherwise, it will put people off.
If your business truly values giving back to the community or going green, you should be promoting this. Be very visible with your values as this builds loyalty, especially with Millennials.
8. Not Valuing Your Brand
People can create a strong brand, mission statement, etc., but if they don't value the brand they have built, it can quickly get damaged.
When you're considering adding a new product or service, hiring a new team member, changing colours, partnering with another company, remember to ask yourself, "Is this strengthening or weakening my brand."
If you're thinking about adding a new business to the businesses you already own:
- Will it strengthen or weaken your brand?
- Is it a brand fit?
- Does it bring you closer or further from your mission?
For example, if you owned daycare centres, opening an adult bookshop may not be the best business decision.
Sometimes the smallest details can be overlooked. Do you have magazines in your waiting area that are not a good fit, or possibly inappropriate for some of your clients?
9. Not Growing Your Brand & Doing It In Alignment
There are two sides to this.
- People don't grow their brand, and it becomes stale for their clients, team and themselves.
- They're shifting their brand too often
You do want to keep your brand fresh, and it needs to be tweaked, but you've got to be very careful about making a core value shift.
Growing your brand requires thoughtfulness, but don't shift too much or too often unless there's a good reason. You can safely make a significant shift as long as the core values of the business stay the same
For example, a medical doctor can introduce alternative treatment and therapies as long as they can explain why there has been a shift in thinking and the core value of their business, high level of patient care remains.
Small changes over time can add up to a significant shift long-term.
10. Personal Issues Affecting Your Brand
You cannot get the other nine branding errors right if you do not work on your 'personal issues' first. Personal Issues are the most foundational.
"It's not personal its business is a lie, it's always personal".
Fear of Success: How will you react to having a lot of money, or success? Some business owners will be afraid if they get too big they will be under constant scrutiny, miss time with their family, and their health will suffer.
They don't say "I'm going to hold my self back", but they do it subconsciously.
There are other fears:
- Fear of failing
- Fear of being seen
- Fear of stress
Some people can't say no, even when the request is outside their scope of practice or their brand. Not saying NO is a big mistake. An example of this would be a podiatrist being asked to treat a wart on someone's hand. The treatment is the same, and they know what to do, but a podiatrist should say NO.
As a society, we're getting more and more into an 'us against them' mentality, which will hurt your brand, but it comes from an 'us against ourselves'. Posting your political views, religious beliefs, etc., on social media can be very damaging to your brand.
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