Reputation and Trust: Do you Have Both?

At the end of last year I asked readers to send me their biggest challenges for 2014. The winning question was related to innovation, which I wrote about last week: “This is why your new products crash & burn“.

Another of the questions I received was related to measuring equity and the relative importance of following the image of the br and or the corporation. I respond below to this interesting dilemma and propose some ideas about what you should be following.

The three essentials of br and valueLet me start by saying that I covered br and image metrics in some detail last year in a popular post  called “ How to Build Br and Reputation and Consumer Trust: And then Track it”. The article spoke about the three important areas that you need to measure in order to have a complete perspective of your br and image, namely Rational / Functional, Emotional / Subjective and Cultural / Relational.

Whilst this is the simplest method for measuring br and equity, it is said that there are in fact seven essential elements that make a business great in the eyes of the customer. These elements are a combination of product perceptions as above, together with those of the enterprise. Perhaps surprisingly, the latter actually trump the former in driving behaviours today, so corporate reputation is now essential to follow too. It also suggests that whilst product performance, services and innovation are important, it is the companies behind the br ands that influence a consumer’s trust and final choice. If you’d like to read more about this, please click on the above link where you can find more details.

Coca Cola logo

However, measuring br and image and corporate reputation is still not going to give you all the answers you need. One of the areas that few organisations study today, even when they measure both of these, is the relationship between the images of the br ands and the company.

Unilever AXE logoFor some br ands such as Coca Cola, the relationship is both obvious and strong, whereas for Pantene or Axe the link to P&G  and Unilever may be far less evident.

P&G Pantene logo

Despite an increasing effort by both companies to strengthen the association between their br ands and themselves as manufacturer, the connection remains tenuous at best.

So how do you measure this link and underst and what the br and brings to the corporation and vice versa? Read on for a simple process.

Following Br and & Corporate Reputations is a 3-step process

Step 1: Measure your br ands’ images

Hopefully you are already doing this on a regular basis. If not please start immediately since you cannot manage br ands without knowing where you are today, even if you have a clear idea planned for where you want to go. The post linked above gives you a start on getting this done.

The one addition that you may have to incorporate in your current questionnaire is to ensure that you clearly identify whether the respondent knows who makes each of the br ands. Continue Reading

No Success without Trust

One of the (many) reasons Coca Cola is so successful, is because consumers Trust the br and. They trust that it will refresh them and help them to enjoy a relaxing moment, probably in the company of friends and family. 

Trust in a company or br and is what makes people believe in it, makes them loyal to it and often willing to pay more for it than other, similar offers. If you don’t know whether or not consumers trust you, or how to go about increasing it, then read on.

 

There are no Br ands without Consumers

A now famous, but anonymous quote states that:

“There may be consumers without br ands, but there are no br ands without consumers”

In other words, unless people purchase what you are manufacturing, then however you package and br and it, it will certainly not succeed. IPSOS MORI in the UK went even further, when they said that “There is little doubt that an organisation’s reputation is its most important intangible asset. Managed effectively, it can increase loyalty, commitment and support from a wide range of stakeholders. A strong reputation creates a positive halo around an organisation – generating a reservoir of good will as well as increasing the effectiveness of its marketing and communication activities.” In the case of Coca Cola, the br and is the company and the company is the br and, and as such the company needs to abide by the same rules as br and building.

 

A great example of a great Br and

Coke’s promotion the Coca Cola Friendship Machine (video) is a great example of how well Coca Cola underst ands its consumers really well. This knowledge and underst anding comes not only from market research, but from all employees putting the consumer at the heart of their business. And they don’t just talk about how important their consumers are to them; they walk consumer-centricity day in, day out. They demonstrate it in their constant reevaluation of what they are communicating and how they are doing so. And they demonstrate it to their consumers by surprising and delighting them every day.

 

Trust enables mistakes to be overcome more quickly

To be truly consumer centric takes work, but all (CPG / FMCG) companies need to reevaluate how they are integrating their consumers into everything they do. They need to start every decision or plan by thinking about their consumers first and what they would like the company to do. Even when there are problems, recalls or disasters to face, consumers are more likely to be underst anding and stay with a br and that is open, honest and transparent; a company that tells people what has gone wrong and how they plan to put it right.

Whether good or bad, today the web means that news is shared globally FAST; you can’t avoid it. Everyone makes mistakes but people – and companies – we trust openly admit it, learn from it and move on.  Continue Reading

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