A relationship with a brand feels great…just like a boy feels about his dog.
The Real Deal Works!
Have you ever tried to be all things to all people? Whether it’s in your personal interactions or your marketing communications effort, you may already know, this doesn’t work. What happens is, you get a watered down version of the real you, product or service. And despite trying so hard, you become meaningless to most.
The Search for the Truth.
It’s a Heller’s catch-22 because although you want everyone to like you, unless you’re the true you, people will see right through it and end up not trusting you. Sure when you put forward the real deal, you may lose some folks (who just weren’t the right match anyway), but the beautiful result is that many others will want to connect with you even more. And most likely, they’ll be in it for the longer run with loyalty.
A Relationship of Shared Values.
In some circles, I’ve heard the ‘be all to all’ way called ‘vanilla’ (yummy and a favorite flavor of mine) or generic. But to be meaningful to those who matter most, it’s important to reveal the true you. Taking this idea to your product or service, the same applies. Your customers want the authentic, true product or service. And if you communicate plus offer just that, you can stand apart, be different from the rest plus relevant to them. And you’ll find that by doing this, you’ll attract those who most want to interact with you anyway and who share values with you. This is what can be considered, a real relationship of shared values.
“It’s always better when we’re together,” Jack Johnson
Do I Feel Good When I’m With You?
If you try to be all things to all people, your best potential customers will see right through this as they search for the truth and at some point, they’ll realize that it’s hard for them to understand how they feel about you or how you’re relevant to them. And it’s not necessarily as much about how others feel about you or your product (although this is important) as it is about how they actually feel about themselves when they’re with you. If they feel good about themselves when engaging with you, then it’s working! As songwriter Jack Johnson says, “It’s always better when we’re together.”
You Da Brand.
As a mentor to young adults, I’ve shared an article called ‘You Da Brand’ and it’s about how to embrace and realize the potential of your own personal brand. And as a brand coach working with organizations to develop and pinpoint their product brand, we apply the same effort by bringing forward the personality of that product in a way that is different from the competitors and relevant to those you want to engage.
Management guru, Tom Peters takes the concept a bit further to explain differentiation (which is certainly a key strategy!):
“Start by identifying the qualities or characteristics that make you distinctive from your competitors — or your colleagues. What have you done lately — this week — to make yourself stand out? What would your colleagues or your customers say is your greatest and clearest strength? Your most noteworthy (as in, worthy of note) personal trait?…”