What is the most important aspect of a successful business brand?
Is it a clever media marketing campaign? Is it an effective digital marketing campaign? Is it the logo we see on business cards to billboards?
Not exactly – the cardinal aspect is not so obvious nor is it often talked about (outside business development). The cardinal aspect of any great brand is a business’s management mindset and resulting culture.
You have likely heard it countless times before: the most important asset of any business is its staff. Neglect this aspect and you develop a negative and fear-based culture. However, you can do the opposite and nurture this aspect. A plant needs sunshine; similarly, your workplace and its staff need enthusiasm and positivity. If you have enthusiasm for your business and it shows, this will flow down through to your staff. Enthusiasm and a positive mindset is an infectious thing!
My favourite example is Sir Richard Branson’s actions in Virgin Blue, presently Virgin Australia. It is the year 2000, and Branson sets up and launches Virgin Blue into the ultra-competitive domestic air travel market. The first thing he does is foster a positive and exciting culture for his employees. Arguably, it’s still one of the best within the industry. Prospective employees queue to be part of this exciting new business; Branson has a track record of not creating businesses so much as creating families. Thus upon launching Virgin Blue, the employees take great pride in being part of the company. At the same time, they are encouraged to take ownership of their roles: this is their business. Accordingly, their enthusiasm shows.
Enthusiasm and excitement has a major role. When a staff is excited about being part of an organisation – be it multi-national or a locally based SME – it transforms what customers and clients think of your business and what they tell others. This and this alone, is what separates successful brands from their competitors.
A little enthusiasm and positivity breeds great results: a healthy attitude promotes a healthy culture; a healthy culture promotes effective staff; effective staff promote happy customers; and happy customers promote potential customers. Furthermore, happy customers promote brand loyalty.
Get your workplace culture right and you are halfway there to creating a successful – memorable – brand image.