Broken promises sting — a lot. Whether it’s between you and a friend or you and a brand, a promise broken destroys credibility, trust, and loyalty. Ask yourself this — if your customers don’t believe in your company, then how can you expect them to hand over their hard-earned cash?
Although many companies are focused on their brand, they do not put the effort into creating a brand promise. Perhaps your existing marketing efforts are missing the mark and you don’t know why. Maybe it’s time to look inward. Before you spend a bunch of cash on a new brand, take a hard look at your company’s follow-through. Your marketing could be perfectly fine, but your business could be failing to live up to it’s commitments, and breaking promises on the customer service side.
I often say there are only three kinds of brands; brands you know and love, brands you know and DON’T love, and brands you’ve never heard of. The only difference between a brand you love, and a brand you don’t, is the brand promise.
Think of Geico’s often-repeated promise “15 minutes could save you 15% or more on car insurance.” Bold, catchy, memorable — and true. It’s more than a tagline, it’s a brand promise. And one they stick to. Think of the airline (cough, cough United) that cancels your flight for no reason or punches you in the face. Or the unnamed cable company that promises to serve you between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. — but never shows up. I’ve never visited a McDonald’s with a working ice cream machine. #Uggggh Companies who break their promises quickly become the punchline of memes and mockery. If you can’t deliver, you can quickly go from success to McFailure.
One of our clients, Holiday Barn Pet Resorts has spent the last 50 years honing in on their brand promise. I know this first-hand. Recently, our Creative Director, Art Webb boarded his dog at their state-of-the-art pet facility in Midlothian. When he checked Ollie in, he mentioned that his wife was very nervous about leaving him. The Holiday Barn team responded with numerous updates and happy puppy pics throughout Ollie’s stay at the pet palace. They’ve earned a great reputation because they follow through on their brand promise — “Creating Joy in the Lives of Pets & Their Families since 1972.”
Trust me on this — take care of your customer, follow through, and they will take care of you.