The top-trusted brand for 2023 has managed to stick around for quite some time.
That brand is… Band-Aid (Morning Consult).
It’s one of those brands that is so trusted, you don’t even think about it. It’s necessary, consistent, and dependable. I can’t imagine being without Band-Aids in my home, backpack, suitcase, and golf bag.
Admittingly, if you sell mattresses or any other durable goods purchased once a decade, it’s going to be hard to have the same kind of brand loyalty.
That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try.
Here’s a simple, but great goal for your business:
Make every customer a raving fan.
It’s an old book but one that’s “stuck” (sorry, couldn’t help it) with me. What are raving fans? In the words of Ken Blanchard and Sheldon Bowles, in the book of the same title, raving fans are those customers who are so overwhelmed or floored by the service they received that they simply can’t stop telling everyone about it.
When guests are loyal and “raving”, they almost automatically take the one action that makes your brand even more valuable – they refer you to friends and family.
I consider myself a pretty tough sell. Still, there are a few brands where my experience exceeded expectations. I enthusiastically refer them to friends and family.
Here’s one example.
I refinanced my home mortgage last year. Not something I do as often as I use a Band-Aid. I approached it with a bit of dread – expecting an avalanche of paperwork and phone calls that went to automated hell.
Today, I’m a raving fan of the person who guided me through the process, and by extension, his company.
I got his name from my neighbor (referral #1).
He picked up on the first phone call.
He gave me his office number, cell number, email address and said call, email or text me anytime.
He was surprisingly available. He even returned my call while at the Mayo Clinic where his wife was having tests (I’m not endorsing this action, but still…).
He made me aware of discounts I didn’t even know I qualified for.
He simplified the process and didn’t weigh me down with unnecessary paperwork.
He made closing easy by doing all the work on the front end.
He followed up. Here’s the most surprising part – he stays in contact to this day with an email every few months. Not ‘sales’ emails, but informative emails about my neighborhood. Current average price of homes, average age of homeowners, number of children, number of homes sold – stuff like that.
What do raving fans do? Refer. Guess who my friends who moved here from out of town used for their new home – this guy (referral #2).
When a neighbor told me they were refinancing – guess what number I gave them – this guy (referral #3).
A year and half later I’m still “raving”.
While it is hard work to build brand equity and brand loyalty, it is relatively easy to lose both.
There are many ways to lose the trust of your loyal guests, so I’ll mention only one.
You start to become arrogant.
“Loyalty is dependent on continuing performance. The minute we start acting as if we own the guest, we are nurturing a dangerous fantasy” (Excellence Wins).
For added inspiration, I’ll leave you with what should be the theme song for Band-Aid and raving fans.
Stuck on you
I’ve got this feeling down deep in my soul that I just can’t lose
Guess I’m on my way
Needed a friend
And the way I feel now I guess I’ll be with you ’til the end
– Lionel Ritchie
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