This article calls on marketers to fix the disconnect between the promises brands make and the actual experience customers receive.
“Essentially, brands are built on promises but it’s the experience you have of an organisation that constitutes reality.” Thomas Brown, head of insights at the CIM
It suggests marketers are falling into the trap of claiming more and more about their brand in order to cut through in the crowded marketplace, but without backing it up in practice.
Is lack of customer insight to blame? Perhaps only on the part of senior marketers:
The CIM report found that while customer insight and research are being shared across business units, and senior leaders, it rarely permeates the ranks of the organisation. Only 14 per cent of the marketers surveyed said it was the main driver of decision making.
Not that this insight should be applied in a uniform way. An advertising campaign can be outrageous and not based in reality as long is this is understood by the audience not to be an actual product claim. Good brand communication and good customer experience can look very different – as long as they both deliver on their respective briefs.
But it may be that when it comes to customer experience, useful trumps engaging. For Google at least:
Google’s problem is also the challenge that many brands now face- given the complexity of media fragmentation, brands want to try and create deeper engagement through social media channels with their creative assets, but there’s a big danger here; brands need to be providing things that are ultimately useful to consumers.
Too specific a focus on communication engagement might lead brands to take their eye of the ball and not continue to innovate their product portfolio, falsely believing that engaging communication is a substitute.
Brand Utility anyone?