The value of your business is the sum of many parts. Some are easy to quantify with financial information, like equipment, inventory and even intellectual property. However, there is also a long list of other items which are far more difficult to quantify with dollars and cents. Things like staff moral and the value of your business’s brand are more open to interpretation and less based on a tally of quantifiable digits.
So, what exactly is a brand? The term ‘brand’ has moved well past its origin of simply being a logo or trademark. A brand is the sum of all tangible and intangible parts of your company and product, and what they elicit from your consumer (and those who aren’t yet your consumers) in terms of perceptions, real or otherwise.
Your brand can bring great value to the overall worth of your business. Your brand value is related to a variety of components including market share; product reviews, customer loyalty, consumer perception, market position and top of mind awareness.
There are three key areas where a brand can be improved and with improvement the company’s value will increase as a result:
1. Your Product or Service
If you sell a product or a service, there are likely improvements that could be made which would boost quality and increase the brand value of your business. Ensuring your product or service is as strong as it can be will help to improve what people think of your brand and how they speak about it to others. Should your product or service consistently miss the approval of consumers, not only will sales suffer, but so will public opinion and the perception of your brand. First indicators for the approval of your brand, product or service is your position in the marketplace, customer loyalty and customer feedback.
2. Consumer Perception of Your Product
This is tied to the first point. No matter how great you think your product or service is, it is what consumers actually think that build or detract from your brand value. What consumers think is what they tell people and share about your brand and product. Consumer perception is typically driven by emotion rather than logic. A product’s performance results in good or bad feelings – from happiness to anger. Add to this the notion that people tend to more readily share their negative opinions and experiences than the positive ones making managing consumer perception super important. In this environment, properly managing the perception of your brand is key. Ideally, the perception of your brand and the products or services you offer should be positive, next neutral and worst, negative.
3. Your Team as Brand Ambassadors
The people who work at your company are the largest asset when it comes to building or destroying your brand. The team who works for your company every day has an impact on the perception of your company. When they are on the job, are they friendly, consumer-focused, passionate about your company, product and service? If yes, that’s fantastic and even better if maintain the positivity about your company when they aren’t at work. If they are negative and share their opinions overtly or through actions with your customers, that can damage your brand. Considered to be ‘your brand experts,’ a consumer who sees one of your team members speak negatively about your company/product has a big impact on what they think of your brand. Conversely passion and pride in the company and product they are representing, can sway a customer to have an increased opinion of your brand.
As stated, brand can impact the value of your company, so how do you measure it? Unfortunately, there is no easy mathematical formula to apply to quantify your current brand value or brand equity.
There are some quick indicators you can do to get a taste of what your current brand perception is:
- Listen to your team when they are interacting with your customers. How are they engaging with customers? What is their tone? What are they saying?
- Google your company, overall brand and the specific product(s) or service(s) you offer. What are people saying about them? What are the reviews? What is the tone of the first few results in the search regarding your brand, product and service? What is being said on social media platforms?
- What are your refunds or credits like? What is your customer loyalty level? How many customer complaints are you receiving and what is being said?
A true measure of your brand should come from a third party. They will do a 360-degree environment scan including: competitive analysis, product or service value, online presence and tone, consumer awareness, customer satisfaction, emotional connection, internal team, and many other key elements.
If you want to increase the value of your company, connect with us. We can help you determine your top value drivers and help you build a plan to improve your business’s overall value.