You get one chance to make a great first impression
Branding. Making a great first impression. The words you use. The talking points you want to communicate. These concepts are so well tied together. And, to do it all in 60 precious seconds, 30 seconds or 90 seconds elsewhere in front of customers, your boss or peers or even in an interview, if done well, leads to great follow ups and discussions whether at that moment or later on.
Branding. Getting that strategy right. Making sure you’re saying what the customer wants to hear. Making sure that how you present your branding message throughout his or her decision-making process is consistent to how your product, service or company wants to be perceived and how that matches what the customer should be hearing or reading.
Well, there are conflicting perspectives out there. An interesting and provocative opinion was posted recently on LinkedIn that suggested that getting leads, especially for start-ups, was more important than making sure the branding strategy was well-structured. “Directionally, early on in the lifecycle of a startup – you need to be heads down and focused on generating demand and finding customers. As the startup scales and gains traction, it’s a gradual shift from generating demand to fulfilling demand. This happens through building a brand.”
My perspective is different.
Building a demand gen program without forethought as to who the buyers are and what their decision making process can lead to inefficiencies in the demand tactics used. Rather than see what sticks, knowing what your brand stands for can facilitate cost efficiencies and still allow for A/B testing to strengthen communications. As important is also having the same branding consistency in how Sales is presenting the brand to customers.
Having the right branding strategy leads to a compelling value proposition and story lines that can be used in all forms of inbound and outbound marketing activities, whether you’re in front of a customer (or a hiring manager) or creating communication programs.
After all, you get one chance to make a great first impression.
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