You know protecting your brand is essential. You know consistency with your brand is vital. You know that brand experience is your make or break with customers and clients. So: how do you get this army behind you to jump on board? One person can’t do it. A leadership team can’t do it. You have to get buy-in from the top down.
Luck for you, this isn’t our first rodeo. We have helped dozens of field operations leaders and managers enforce brand standards with lasting success. A strong combination of thoughtful leadership and the right technology will get you there.
Provide the Right Tools and Information
The field visit process is likely your strongest asset in the branding consistency battle, especially when maintaining that consistency across several locations and territories. When is the last time this process has been looked at or improved upon?
Step away from the paper, the email, and the scanners. The field visit process looks very different than it did just five years ago. Field visit technology like Action Card is cloud-based and customizable; it increases transparency and fosters consistency. All branding guidelines can now be shared in real-time instead of the sluggish, traditional post. Promotional displays and signage can be shared via images through the app. Then, each store can confirm consistency through the app, as well.
If you’ve managed to get buy-in with “because I said so,” please do us all a favor and teach us your ways. No? Then you need to give context; the “why” behind the way things are done. What are the elements that create your unique brand experience? How do customer service, store layout, and personalization tie into that? What creates brand loyalty? Employees aren’t a smile that knows how to work the register–they’re your brand! Have you communicated that to them?
After the tools are given and the context has been provided, it’s “show me the money” time. Well, maybe not money, but some sort of incentive to provide those on the team who have shown initiative and buy-in. This can be getting out early, a free lunch or coffee, pick of the best best shifts, etc. This will encourage the positive behavior to continue and incentivize buy-in from the rest of the team.
We would love to be able to say that our app, Action Card, is all you need to enforce consistency and gain buy-in where your brand standards and experience are concerned. Action Card can truly be the cornerstone of your efforts, but without guidance and encouragement from leadership, your odds of success aren’t great. No technology, no matter how intuitive or dynamic, can replace good leadership. So get out there and give it!