Key Steps to Saving Your Brand From Brand Death

A few weeks ago, we explored the two sides of Brand Death. In the first, Sudden Brand Death, media exposure fans the flames and a company’s only recourse is swift, corrective action and strong public relations, which is what save the Tylenol brand back in 1982. Enron, Firestone, the cases of Sudden Brand Death aren’t numerous, but they are extremely memorable.Unfortunately, the second side of Brand Death is much less visible and hard to identify. Slow Brand Death could be caused by management inattention, lack of focus, overall neglect, misunderstanding or incompetence, but the signs are there if you look.1. Decreased customer loyalty: If your brands are showing signs of losing loyal customers, you may be suffering from the early onset of Slow Brand Death.2. Lack of differentiation/distinction: If you are noticing that your competitors are looking more and more like you and that you are hearing the dreaded “c-word” (“commodity”) in management meetings and discussion, commoditization may be attacking your category and your brand.3. Increased price sensitivity or declining price: If you find that you are not able to command a price premium with your target customers and that you are experiencing more price sensitivity, you may be seeing the first sign of Slow Brand Death.4. Lack of internal alignment with the brand promise: If your employees aren’t clear about the promise your brand is making in the marketplace, how do you expect the customer to be clear about it? If your company is not set up to deliver on the brand promise, your brand-customer encounters may vary to the point of eroding your brand strength – or Slow Brand Death.Overall market confusion will lead to Slow Brand Death. The very culture of your company may be leading your brands to continually erode and weaken by a lack of commitment to maintaining strong values – and over-emphasizing short-term results over long-term success. However, while the rapid virulence of Sudden Brand Death may limit your options, thankfully, that is not the case with Slow Brand Death.Here you have time. Perhaps not as much time as you would like, but at least the media isn’t breathing down your neck publicizing every step and miss-step you take. Clear, decisive management action can stop and correct Slow Brand Death. Here is the process you should undertake:1. Get the buy-in of executives: The easiest way to get top management to buy into branding as an important strategic business function is to make sure that they understand the brand’s connection to the bottom line, and the impact of the Slow Brand Death symptoms on that bottom line.. Now, everybody in business “knows” that strong brands deliver profits. But I would venture that very few business people could explain exactly how that happens in financial terms. Marketers must build the case for branding investment by educating management about the links of a well-defined brand, consistently delivered, to:• customer loyalty and its volume benefits and even willingness to pay a premium
• lowered cost of sales and improved operational efficiency
• higher revenue and more predictable cash flow
• enhanced shareholder valueOnce top management understands that improving brand performance will end up making money for the company, you will have their buy-in.2. Understand the current situation: Once you have the support of top management, you need to complete a thorough brand assessment. Your goal is to understand where your brand is now and where your competitors’ brands are, in the hearts and minds of the market. Additionally, you need to assess trends and emerging markets to predict how your brand – and your competitors’ brands – will be impacted in the future. Finally, you need to understand how your brand is perceived internally as well as externally, and what gaps there might be between those two perceptions. Leaving out any of these views could give you a misleading picture of your brand in the marketplace.3. Define the desired brand: Based on the brand assessment, you should have a good idea of market gaps your brand can credibly fill, based on what the market is willing to let your brand do and where the market is going. From this, develop a complete definition of your brand of the future – say five years out. This future or desired brand becomes your goal set. All of your brand actions should be evaluated on their ability to move your brand into the desired space.4. Identify the brand drivers: The brand assessment will help you understand which brand contact-points or functions are having the most impact in creating customers’ brand perceptions. Each brand will have different drivers. For an automobile, it may be the actual test drive and driving experience. For a bank it may be the ATM or the voice response unit that directs you to different functions within the organization. Be sure that you look to identify the brand drivers for each of the important brand audiences. One target market’s drivers may differ from another’s or your strategic partners may have a different set of brand drivers than your customers.5. Align internally to deliver the brand promise: When the desired brand position is determined and defined, many companies move to communicate to the marketplace. This is premature, as it is not yet certain whether your organization can consistently deliver on the brand promise you want to make. Take the time to evaluate your organization’s readiness and ability to deliver the brand promise. You may find that you will need to take some action to bring your company into alignment with the brand. At a minimum, you will need to communicate the new brand promise when your company is ready and able to understand it and use it in their day-to-day jobs. Organizational development, training, and internal communications among others are important elements in achieving this capability.6. Communicate the brand externally: With all of the other steps in place, you can now begin communicating the new brand externally. But before doing this, take the time to evaluate your key audiences for brand communications. What are the most compelling messages that you need to send each audience? Document these messages and make sure you use them consistently in your communications.7. Measure and monitor: No time to rest on your laurels – the key to avoiding Brand Death is to know what’s going on in the marketplace. There are three factors working on your brand: you, your competitors, and your target audiences. Put in place a measurement system (internal and external) to monitor the critical brand contact points and brand perceptions to make sure that you are not straying from your plan and that you are progressing as anticipated toward your future brand.Once you have set up a comprehensive brand process throughout the company, you should continually revisit all of the steps to make sure that you are meeting your brand goals and objectives.Brand Death is costly and avoidable. The decision to kill a brand is the decision to throw away a corporate asset, similar to jettisoning real estate or other capital assets. Management can and should manage their brands as the valuable corporate assets they are. If the brand has any remaining equity at all, the cost of brand improvement is far less than the cost of creating a new brand. On-going monitoring and measuring of brand vitality is critical to successfully manage the brand and ensure that the brand remains viable in the marketplace.

Renters Insurance Protects Your Possessions

If you live in an apartment or rented home, you may not have insurance coverage for your possessions. Even so, it is just as likely that you may experience a loss from fire or theft as someone who owns their home and has homeowner’s insurance. California renters insurance offers a way to protect your possessions.The experience of many people is that they first move into an apartment taking everything they own in a few boxes in their car. Over time, they obtain furnishings and other items of value so that the next move requires a large truck. Each of those items you bring to your home has value, and it would cost money to replace them.Renters insurance offers coverage that would pay replacement value on the items that you have collected over the years if they are damaged or destroyed. This coverage would help you to get your life back together after the tragedy.Renters insurance gives liability coverage to you and your family. If a guest is injured in you home, you can be held liable for his medical expenses. In fact, his own health insurance may not cover the expenses if you are responsible. Insurance provides the liability coverage that would take care of the guest’s injuries.If there is some type of catastrophe that makes your home uninhabitable, then California renter’s insurance will also pay for housing until the time that you are able to return to your own home.You will find that there are many companies that offer renters insurance. One of the best ways to purchase this insurance is to speak with the company that is already covering your vehicle. Many times the additional insurance can be added for a nominal charge to your existing insurance. Sometimes, the multi-line discount offered by insurance companies will almost pay the entire cost of the premium for renter’s insurance.Like almost any other insurance, you will want to get quotes for the cost of insurance. You can get these quotes online and most of the time they are free just for asking. Collect several of the insurance quotes and then begin to compare. You will likely find a company that offers the exact coverage that you need to protect your valuables.California renters insurance is an affordable way to protect your assets from theft or damage. If the unthinkable were to happen, you will have the coverage that will allow you to replace those things necessary for life.

Experience the Magic of Modern Wall Decor

If you wish to embellish your home with some breathtaking accents, you must opt for modern wall pictures such as the moving pictures. These modern wall decor have an extremely captivating aura. The vibrant colors and realistic scenes of these pictures can endow your interior with a touch of class. Other than the astounding scenes of nature, you can also find unique landscapes in these home accents. There are wild beasts, water creatures and other scenes such as the lighthouses which can be obtained in these wall decors.As these pictures are 3D in nature, they present you with a realistic feel of these magical natural beauties within your place. In fact, their magic is such that it can drench your entire home in beauty. There are some breathtaking scenes such as sunsets, beaches, waterfalls, city skylines to choose from. The idea variety of these wall decors helps you to find a perfect match for your particular interior.Living in the modern times, you need to opt for the contemporary wall frames. The ages old pictures and accents can no more fulfill the purpose of embellishment as you wish. The modern glass pictures such as 3D pictures are moving in nature. As they make use of the up to the minute technology, they present you more vibrant colors as well as sounds. They not only please your eyes but also quench the fervor of your hearing. As a result, you get to experience the entire scenes just as they are depicted in these. For this reason, the 3d pictures present you with a total experience which makes these wall decor which more than mere wall hangings.You can find these modern wall pictures in a number of sizes to suit your particular need. So wait no more and discover the magic of these brilliant home accents now!