How do you build a thriving business and an iconic brand? David McNally, Australian born, Chaska resident shared his insight with a number of area business professionals. His company, TransForm Corp., “provides people with the knowledge, skills and inspiration to perform at their best.” If you are a business owner, these notes from his speech may help you organize your brand priorities.
David McNally has spent 30 years working with leaders to align their organization. He believes transformation occurs when people share a common purpose. The key to growth and profitability is purposeful leaders who build inspiring organizations and iconic brands.
Clearly, it takes a lot of effort and energy to build a strong brand. McNally subscribes to the Thrive vs. Survive philosophy. Survive, by definition, means to not die. Thrive by definition means to grow, prosper, and flourish. Survivors see people as ordinary. Thrivers see people as extraordinary. Thrivers are willing to take risks, and constantly re-invent themselves. There is a big difference in attitude.
If you want to build a strong brand, ask, who is your most important customer? Once you identify that, ask, how can we create and keep them? How do we create the ultimate customer experience? According to McNally, new customers cost five times more to find than to retain. Additionally, 60% of customers are turned away by indifference.
The “BRAND” determines 70% of the market value of the product. How strong is your brand? Here are four things to do to strengthen your brand:
- PROTECT YOUR IMAGE. Take a look at your logo, letterhead, commercials, ads. These must consistently provide and reflect company values. Business is like dating. Do your customers want to come back for the second date? Intentions are invisible. We are judged by actions, which creates impressions over time. We are branded by ACTION. Consciously create the brand you want.
- BE DISTINCTIVE: What are your clear values and beliefs? Are your standards high? Live your value statement. Every business wants promoters-customers who volunteer your value without anyone asking. The leader needs to be the person who embodies the promise your company makes. Model what you want your staff to do-BE A LEADER.
- BE RELEVANT: What you stand for connects to what someone else considers important. How well do you deliver? If there is a problem, do not compound it. Use empathy and compassion. Don’t involve the customer in the problem. The customer is always right. THINK IN REVERSE-what do your customers need, value, want, expect?
- BE CONSISTENT: Have consistent behaviors and consistent emotional connections. Be human. McNally used the Marriott Corporation as an example. Marriott instills great customer experience from the top down. It begins with leadership…model, live
it…the leader is the keeper of the brand promise. Drill. Reinforce.
- VALUES, VISION, and PURPOSE drive the brand. What does your company value and believe in? High standards? Integrity? What do you want to create? Measure life by what you experience. What do you want to contribute? Who do you serve? What
expectations do the customers have of you? What do you offer to meet those expectations? Know your employees and bring knowledge, talent and skills to the table.
- Everything begins with brand. Great customer experience, repeat business, and building a strong brand is a responsibility of all employees, from the top down.
Waconia, Eden Prairie and SouthWest Chambers of Commerce hosted David McNally, International Business Speaker, at Hazeltine National Golf Club. As part of member benefits, Minnesota School of Business-Shakopee was invited to attend.