A promise, a belief system, a truth, and a soul. All of these terms have been used to define a brand. I will describe it as a representation of a company’s values and goals demonstrated through its mission statement, interaction with consumers, and overall position in the market. Branding is extremely important in the auto industry. Some consumers in this industry are completely brand loyal to one company. Others will explore a new brand if it has a more competitive product or if it is recommended to them by someone they trust.
WHY IS BRANDING IMPORTANT?
Customers are told what to expect from your company through its brand. Your brand is your company’s connection to its consumers and other businesses. That is why what a company claims their brand message is must match how the company actually operates every day. Positive thoughts or experiences with a brand often lead to brand loyalty which frequently results in an increase in sales. In this increasingly competitive auto market, the fight for customers’ attention and business is getting more and more competitive. You can stand apart from other companies by maintaining a stellar brand image. Customer service, blogging, a solid mission statement, and consistent messages on social media can all be beneficial for your brand. You should continuously strive to improve your brand’s image.
HOW CAN YOU IMPROVE YOUR BRAND?
Consistency is achieved when your company’s daily actions concur with your brand’s image. For automobile franchises, the biggest aspect of consistency involves communicating with their customers at the dealership. When a customer anticipates service similar to what your mission statement and advertisements claim, and they don’t receive that level of service, their expectations are not met. Because of this, customer satisfaction goes down, and word of mouth marketing may not work in your favor. That’s why consistency among all workers is important. While a logo, color scheme, and website layout are not the most vital parts of a brand’s image, they must be consistent with your company’s message in order for it to be effective. Every time something like an interaction, an ad, or a website layout don’t coincide with a company’s brand, that brand’s power and credibility are weakened.
Studies show that being honest about products and services available is even more important than product utility and social significance. People care about how their products are made and whether companies are willing to be transparent about their business practices. It is very difficult to gain customer loyalty and trust without credibility. People are hesitant to trust any company or any person without knowing their story. Authenticity is about knowing your audience and delivering straightforward messages to them. Building credibility is one of the most beneficial things a company can do for its brand in today’s market.
Consistency does not mean conformity. Conformity is not needed for a company’s brand to be powerful; in fact, today’s culture thrives on individuality. Consistency, however, is needed. Every part of the company should be aware of the brand and how their job fits into it. Each employee impacts the brand in a different way. The key is making sure that, even more than knowing the company’s mission statement, workers realize that their actions impact the company’s brand and how it is perceived by the public. Every part of the company from finance to management needs to participate in actively representing the brand.
Most industries rely on push marketing to sell products. This can be effective with some products, but it’s hard to do with vehicles. Pushing someone to buy a car is likely not going to be very effective. I know what you’re thinking, then how are we supposed to get new customers? The answer seems simple: build up your brand. Well, I guess it’s not that simple. To do that requires time, focus, effort, and therefore, money. The point of pull marketing is to make consumers come to you. For this to happen, you have to focus on building credibility of the company, expertise in the field, and value for the customer. Focusing on strengthening the reputation of your brand should not be seen as insignificant. It may not lead to new clients right away, but pull marketing is more sustainable and less time consuming than push marketing.
WHAT IS THE NEXT STEP?
The auto industry is individualizing vehicles more and more, but you must ensure that your brand and its message remains intact. Customization is important because it lets consumers choose exactly what they want. You should strive to make the overall experience that people get from any interaction with your company align with your brand and its reputation. Consistency and authenticity throughout your entire company are needed in order for you to pull consumers to your brand.