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“A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person. You earn reputation by trying to do hard things well.”
Branding is an essential element of marketing. Done well, a brand should be the guiding light for the organization. Above all, you need to know what you stand for, and it is the litmus test against which all decisions, actions, strategies, or tactics are judged.
A question that should accompany every business decision (and certainly does here at Frontier): “Is this in keeping with our brand promise to customers?” In an age of commodity or perceived parity (think gasoline, paper towels, airlines, etc.), your brand is what sets you apart. Are you known for being friendly and approachable, like Southwest Airlines, or businesslike, like American Airlines? People will naturally gravitate toward your brand depending on what they’re looking for. It will also help you source and attract talent. If you know your corporate brand or ethos, it will help you screen talent to ensure they’ll be successful working and embracing the company culture to help deliver the brand every day for customers.
For those entrepreneurs who are starting to build their brand, they need to know what they want to stand for and how they plan to interact with customers, partners, and employees. And it must be true, because a brand on TV or paper that doesn’t match the reality of customer interactions or experience will break down very quickly. And as customers have a direct line to all your social media platforms (another facet that is absolutely essential in building your brand), they are quick to call you out—especially if they are dissatisfied (though this is also a great tool to improve customer relations). You also need to understand how your competitors position themselves. If there is a point of differentiation (technology, service, speed, quality, etc.), then leverage that and make sure all your decisions are guided by that differentiation point.
Some cardinal rules to follow in building your brand:
Building your brand is a long-term commitment that requires dedication and confidence in the idea behind your brand. Be true to your brand’s core ideas and commit yourself in establishing a connection that resonates positively with your consumers. Through this, you will find success.
This post is written on behalf of Cory Jones, who currently serves as Vice President of Commercial Marketing for Frontier Communications. In his role, Cory is responsible for all facets of business-to-business marketing for the company, including acquisition, retention, digital, social media, lead generation, and marketing communications.
Cory holds a bachelor’s degree in advertising from Texas Tech University. He lives in the Dallas area with his wife and two children, and is on an eternal quest to finally break par on the golf course.