Smaller and/or younger organizations can feel the pressure to just get the business up and running. The biggest issue in doing this is that many of us attempt to learn to run before we can walk, and this means making many mistakes along the way. Making mistakes is not an issue, nor should it ever be. However, there is always the reputation that precedes us.
Our reputation and our image are always going to be negatively affected if we fall into certain mistakes at the outset. But rather than doing your utmost to not put a foot wrong, which can be counterproductive and ultimately avoid learning the major lessons, it is far better to figure out how you can transform your business image. Let me show you some methods that can make a big difference in how you are perceived by your customers, your stakeholders, and, in fact, yourself.
Start by Strategizing a New Approach
One of the most challenging parts of changing your business image is to adjust your operations to suit the customers' needs. We can make the mistake of sticking to our guns to the point where we are doing our business irreparable damage. This makes it more difficult to figure out how best to change your organization so that it meets the needs of your customers now and in the future. This is especially critical in organizations that deliver impactful services that immediately affect customers' lives, like healthcare.
A company like the Cardinal healthcare digital marketing agency is specially suited to help businesses make effective changes in how they present themselves, whether this is through social media posts, their website, and similar practices. We have to remember that when it comes to changing our business image, it is critical to start strategizing sufficiently, and rather than diving into a whole new approach that isn't carefully weighed up, it can have detrimental consequences and may require altering again sooner than you think.
Rethink Your Engagement Processes
Changing your image doesn't have to occur overnight. Many organizations opt for rebranding and use this as an opportunity to dust away the cobwebs and get rid of anything that did not work, but this can mean throwing out the baby with the bathwater. Sometimes, we can redefine our image without altering those overriding concepts relating to branding. For example, engaging your audience can help them make new decisions about a company. You can do this through restructuring and rethinking your content as you have the opportunity to get your business across to people, highlighting how you can help them with their specific problems.
Ultimately, a service is there to solve a customer's basic needs. Therefore, rethinking how you deliver content, but also the content you provide, allows you to transform public perception and stimulate a conversation between your customers. It's not just about making sure that you bombard people with new colors and images, but about stimulating that discussion between customer and company. This is an amazing way to get noticed, highlight your new approach to doing business, and showcase yourself as an expert on this subject matter so you can then formulate a new message and mold new content to gain a far better and more suitable reaction.
Alter Your Customer Interaction
Engaging a customer is one thing, but as already stated, it's about that conversation that allows your relationship to blossom. Any organization needs to listen to what the customers are saying, and you can then make appropriate alterations to deliver a better experience and benefit your relationships in the process. Doing this partly involves assessing where your strengths already lie.
You can look at how customers already engage with your content, and if they are the appropriate demographics, or you can start to think about how you can tailor your services to suit those people better. Depending on the service you offer, you could benefit from literally catering to each individual customer. You could do this through Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platforms, used in tandem with a project management tool that highlights those areas where you need to make changes to further define your image.
Rethink Your Visuals
While many organizations pay attention to the rebranding approach by purely focusing their efforts into the imagery, there's a subtle balance to be had. It certainly benefits your new audience to have imagery that aligns with this new business messaging because you have, no doubt, considered symbols and wording that will help your audience to connect and make better connections with the new brand. When changing your business image, this is the perfect opportunity to upgrade most of those components, although it isn't necessary. However, lots of people feel it's high time to update the color scheme and other associated components of their iconography.
Lots of younger businesses, as already mentioned, can make a number of mistakes in thinking that they just need placeholder images, logos, and websites. We all make mistakes at the outset, and this is where you now have the perfect opportunity to recognize where you have fallen down. There are, of course, many businesses that have attempted a rebranding to very little success, and this may have hinged on a number of marketing mishaps, predominantly in an attempt to appeal to new and younger markets.
A prominent example a decade ago was the alcoholic beverage Southern Comfort and the “SoCo” rebranding that quickly got dropped. Your business image is partly to do with your visual presentation to help your audience connect and make your brand more memorable. However, we must remember to do this across every aspect of our visual communications, from website design to visual and written content, as well as the visual journey your customers will go on with your website.
Consider the Importance of Credibility
Credibility is something that, in any business, should be front and center, not just in terms of marketing strategies, but on a cultural level. When we establish credibility with our audience, it means we know what we are doing, and we use this as a foundation that goes company-wide. For many organizations, there are two disparate entities: the internal and the external. Making the mistake of treating these two as differing components is where many companies fall down.
We should not underestimate the importance of being a credible organization that focuses on those core values. It's a very organic way of working from the inside out. Ultimately, what we build from the inside can highlight our internal credibility from the outside. There is a lot that we can do to help customers peer behind the curtain. This doesn't just relate to marketing tactics like explainer videos or employee profiles, but rather than purely thinking about how we are perceived, we've got to do a lot of digging beneath that surface that we can very easily fake.
When we prioritize our culture and be a supportive entity, this is going to make a far better impact on our employees and impact our culture in so many ways. When you learn to empower your talent and give them the foundations they need to thrive, this is a very simple way of looking after our own that will, by proxy, appeal to more individuals who are more focused on building a rapport with the right company, rather than just opting for the cheapest service. We see this with the younger generations who are more inclined to spend their hard-earned money on something worthwhile.
Businesses that communicate their core values as part of their marketing material are actively doing so not just to appeal to more savvy customers, but it also gives the business the opportunity to actively state their position and use their business as a force for good, recognizing that the customer is the essential piece of this puzzle. We cannot do this without building credibility from the inside out. Credibility can cover a number of components, including:
As simple as it sounds, credibility is something we can instantly lose because so many aspects of our business are on display through our website, social media posts, and how we interact with our customers. Building a culture of trust and credibility is tough; however, it is arguably the most vital tool to altering your business image.
There are more ways to change your image in the modern market. You can do it boldly, brightly, and loudly, subtly and quietly change one component of your business, or change it all, but make no mistake, altering your business image is something that may boost your profile and create new customers and revenue streams, but it can also go the other way. As many businesses believe that sometimes they need to hit reset because the odds are not going in their favor, it can seem very easy to think that this is just an escape route. But altering your business image demands a long and carefully considered thought process.
WRITTEN BYSophie H.