It seems that nearly everyone has some understanding of what a brand is, though it may not be the full picture.
Most people will be able deliver a list of brands that they are familiar with. They may be able to describe the logo, brand colours and the type of imagery used. But these are just the visual aspects of the brand and are only part of what a brand is made of.
If you were to describe a friend purely by how they look, then it would give a pretty superficial understanding. It wouldn’t let someone understand all the important things, like the way your friend always offers a hand when you need it or that they have the courage to speak up against rude people. The same applies to brands.
Great messaging and visuals will draw people in, but how customers experience a brand will decide how they understand the brand.
If you’ve ever had to call up technical support for anything, I’m sure you sympathise when I say I hate calling tech support. Every time I’ve had to call, I feel like I get put through an hour long process that I had already been through myself. When that inevitably fails they just shrug their shoulders and pass the problem onto someone else.
One time, as a last resort to fix an internet connection issue I was having, I called my internet service provider expecting the same unsatisfying result. So I was quite surprised to find myself talking with someone who genuinely knew what they were talking about. He let me know what the issue was and quickly resolved it. Best of all I didn’t have to wait for ages in a queue.
This provider had very little advertising or exposure (I had found them through reviews) but with their technical support, competitive plans, and great additional services that were well suited to my gaming activities, this provider had a brand that I wanted to continue to support.
When thinking about your own brand experience, consider things like:
• How staff interact with customers
• How easy it is to use the product
• How the product feels to touch
• How long customers need to wait in a queue
• How the product is priced
• How unique the packaging is
• How durable the product is
• How quickly issues can be resolved
• How the product is supported through additional services
• How less used senses like taste and smell are integrated
• How difficult it is to purchase the product
• How specific customer requirements are being tailored to
Branding is all about trying to lead the customer towards a particular understanding of the brand, and every experience is an opportunity to guide them in the right direction. By applying design thinking, Studio Zileej can evaluate your brand from another perspective and help you craft that brand experience.