Last night, I was watching Designated Survivor and a line caught my attention; are you familiar with the TV Series? Then you know that sarcastic dude that works at the white house! So this lady came with her credentials to apply as his assistant, and he goes like “… you’re good on paper! You know what else is good on paper? Ink! Ink smudges, it fades, it’s temporary, just like all my assistants…” (I clapped when he said those lines! Lyor Boone is one hell of a character!)
So I paused the film and got to writing this! I promised I was going to write about YOUR BRAND’S (BAD) CHARACTER… here we are!
ATTN: ALL SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS
First, let me emphasize on how it is important for you to be all of the things that you say you are on your CV/credentials… I met someone once, and his portfolio said he had done this and that, and we were like wow! Ok, come do some of these things for us! Err… let’s just say we are all stuck ‘cause he’s stuck not knowing what to do with what we gave him! Outsource if you must, but NEVER disappoint your clients!
Back to your brand’s bad character… @jagabeauty mentioned something while we were at #TAEHangout some Saturdays ago… She said, “a snake has a brand, when you hear ‘omg, there’s a snake under there’, you become immediately terrified… (well, except if you have a weird fetish for snakes).” That’s something like what I am trying to say here… are you the catering brand that knows how to make amazing meals for events – people taste your food and they enjoy devouring the delicacies; but when they meet you in person, especially when things are not exactly going according to plan, they wonder how your food is sweet at all ‘cause there’s zero sweetness in your entire personality?!
Yo! Why’s your brand scary, this ain’t Halloween! Why you gotta be like ink? There’s a little rain, things get a little wet and you’re running all over the place – gradually fading out all the quality and good we thought you were.
Put a lid on it! Whatever bad characters that might want to spread on to your brand’s image and dilute its equity, get a control of it, whatever it is – tardiness, sauciness, anger management issues, etiquette issues, et cetera.
Real success is measured when same clients patronize you over and over, and no one is going to do that when you’re only good on paper – either ‘cause you lack the skills you claim you have, or your quality fades over time, or when things get a little tough, you get a little uncouth.
Your skills can take you up, but your character keeps you there.
WHAT IS YOUR BRAND’S CHARACTER LIKE? If you perceive your sales/clients’ satisfaction elevator is indicating “Ground Floor”, you need to do something now!
Even for the biggest of brands, while they can withstand a little storm badgering their brand’s equity, they cannot afford to allow it linger and remain unfixed. This is why brands who know what it means to keep a good perception spend a lot of time, money and resources teaching their people the ‘way and life’ of the brand. The more reason as a SME, you have to really pay attention to your brand’s character or else you are only signing the death warrant on your fledgling business even before it took wings.
Fun fact: Snake oil is medically worthless and figuratively, it is communication intended to deceive. Do not deceive your clients with superficial good charms, they’re not stupid, they’ll figure you out eventually.
Remember you can only sell a bad product once. And referrals are the key sustenance factor for many SMEs. Be sure you are that person your clients will be confident to refer to their friends, colleagues or business partners.
My work here is done. Thank you for reading this! If you need help telling your brand’s story, writing consistent and appropriate content or you need help creating your business logo and/or managing your social media platforms or website/blog; feel free to mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org
#designatedsurvivor #jackbauer #tvseries #qotd #brandingquotes #lessonsfromamovie
Read my other brand tips and stories here too!