Lead, Follow, or Get the Hell Out of the Way

When is comes to the brand-consumer ecosystem, I see three different groups:

1. Leaders
2. Followers
3. Those who don’t have a clue where they stand

Leaders

Brands themselves are the leaders, be they businesses or individuals. A brand must stand for something. More importantly, its audience must be able to easily see what the brand stands for.

A brand that leads has a unique position, a relevant promise, clear messaging, a distinct voice, and an authentic personality. It has a well-designed and consistent presence that reaches every consumer touchpoint. It wows consumers at every turn, and touches their emotions. It makes them laugh, smile, cry, or jump up and down with excitement. It compels them to relay the brand’s stories to their family and friends, and to help write the endings of these stories.

A brand’s audience must be able to easily see what it stands for. [Tweet this]

Followers

Consumers are the followers. They are the listeners, the receivers, the audiences, the target markets, the people who buy from and subscribe to the brands of the world.

Even with a high level of skepticism overall, many consumers are happy to advocate their favourite brands. They feel rewarded when their loved ones receive the same great experiences as a result of their recommendations.

Don’t get me wrong, these followers aren’t walking with their heads down and their hands in their pockets, nooooo way! Most consumers are not sheep. They’re well aware of what’s happening around them, watching brands intently and speaking up when one misses the mark.

Consumers have a voice, now more than ever. Brands are being defined and directed by consumers, at a pace that no CEO nor committee could hinder. However, without these followers, there would be no leaders to begin with. They’re a necessary part of the ecosystem.

Those who don’t have a clue where they stand

Unfortunately, many brands are not leaders, and find themselves in this third category. They don’t know what they stand for. They don’t hold a competitive position. They don’t communicate effectively. They don’t deliver their promises. These are the businesses who think they have a brand, but don’t (at least not a strong one).

If you don’t know what you’re doing or where you stand, then it’s time to get the hell out of the way. You can either drop your business and become a follower, or you can step it up and become a leader.

For the latter, realize that it’s time to do something differently to strengthen your image in the public eye. Rethink your strategy. Test a new approach. Freshen up your design and copywriting. Improve your customer experience. Invest a bit of time and money to kick things off on a fresh path.

You can either drop your business and become a follower, or you can step it up and become a leader. [Tweet this]

So which group would you like to be in?

Well, since you’re reading this blog, I can probably guess. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still leave a comment!
 
 

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5 Responses to Lead, Follow, or Get the Hell Out of the Way

  1. Have to say, that is an exceptional (and brave!) headline. It got my attention. And…I’m not one to sit and watch the world go by me.

  2. preeti says:

    The last category is awesome, but when it gives way to become a first category. It’s a great post. Thank you so much. it’s motivating.

  3. […] posts: Lead, Follow, or Get the Hell Out of the Way, Branding Your Business: 5 Steps to Success, What’s the Chance a Startup Business Will Fail? […]

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