If your business or brand suddenly went missing, who would miss having you in their lives? Why would they miss you? Where would they go to get their needs met? And what would they NOT be able to get from others that they currently get from you?
The answers to those questions will go a long way toward helping you understand whether or not you have a differentiated position in the markets you serve and care about.
And you need to know. You need to know because understanding what makes you different and how that intersects with what customers highly value gives you the power to compete. You will know why you are valued and set apart from the pack. You will have the basis needed to compete, for attention, for loyalty and, of course, for money.
Your goal, in my view, should always be to have your customers cry like babies or have tantrums like toddlers if you were suddenly unavailable to them. You want to elicit a strong reaction. That’s what genuine brands do. Blands, in contrast, make customers shrug their shoulders (if that) and quickly move on. Most blands, if they went away, would simply go away unnoticed.
You are what your audience thinks and feels about you. If they think about you with little feeling, you’re a bland. If they think about you with strong feeling (good or bad), congratulations . . . you’re a brand. You stand out. You have meaning. You’re not just one of the pack.
So, the next time you’re thinking about the strength of your brand, ask whether or not you’d be missed. Ask whether or not your absence would make a difference or create a hole in your markets and in your customers’ hearts.
Asking these questions just might help you make the brand grow stronger.