Living in an always-on world has created continuously changing markets and increased competition among brands. It is not rare that companies face obstacles when it comes to growth, development, and expanding to other areas. Being faced with these types of problems might often be confusing and put high amounts of pressure for the right decisions to be made. But are these decisions certain to are solving the right problems, at the right time?
Follow us through a simple, yet effective exercise, of engaging with your potential customers. We will help YOU bring some clarity to your brand vision by tackling current issues you might be having when reaching to your desired customers.
1. Bring clarity to your vision.
Do you know how your future strategy should look like? This question might seem rather difficult in the beginning. However, a brand needs to have its priorities and future plans in check as those are a few of the requirements for growth and success. We could explore, here, a few more avenues of brand positioning:
What do you want your position in the market to be in the next X years?
Do you plan to enter other types of markets?
How will your customers perceive you in the future or do you want to maintain the same image to your audience?
2. Define your purpose.
What is the purpose of your company?
How does it help your customers?
What added value do your services provide to your clients?
These are only a few things your clients need to know in order to have a strong base for understanding your brand values. Lack of purpose leads to a lack of direction and this affects the way your audience perceives you.
Take, for example, Tesla’s purpose:
“Tesla’s mission is to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.“ They have focused their energy into delivering the best alternative to fossil-fueled cars, electric cars, while also manufacturing scalable clean energy generation and storage products.
3. Find out why you’re not fulfilling your purpose as a brand.
After discovering what your purpose is, the next step is figuring out why you’re not doing it now. There could be a multitude of reasons as to why you’re not fulfilling your purpose as a brand. The issue could be financial, or lack of guidance, wrongfully set priorities, and so on.
4. Discover the obstacles that stop you.
What are the current problems which stay in your way of accomplishing your purpose?
Do you have the right people or the right company culture? Assessing current issues is an important step in analyzing the flaws, and getting on the right track.
5. Make sure they are the right problems to solve.
After bringing light on what the issues are, the next vital question refers to whether they are the right issues to solve in a particular case. It is not seldom that issues identified might not be the right problems to solve. Sometimes, we can’t solve every single problem, so it’s important to pick the right, most relevant ones.
According to an interview by Attest, some of the biggest challenges facing brands include price increases, customer acquisition, and meeting customer expectations.
6. Question yourself whether they are worth your best efforts.
Are these issues important enough in order for you to give your best efforts to solve them? Keep in mind that ignoring critical issues is not always the best solution given the fact the competition is always trying to outsmart you.
7. Consider the benefits of solving this problem.
We’ve established that critical issues need your most attention and effort. But what is the expected outcome? Client acquisition, repositioning on the market, improved marketing campaigns, or product awareness? This is for you to realize as solving the problems should lead to the result you want. Offering solutions to your customers is vital, but finding solutions and tackling problems which occur in your business is just as important and should not be overlooked.
8. Calculate the costs of solving the issues.
Ignoring critical issues could have major consequences. A viable example of this is Kodak: after being the top leader in the film-based photography industry, their business model failed in favour of digital photography. Poor management and lack of interest and innovation when it came to consumer preferences have led them to fail and caused their audience to lose interest in the company and their products.
9. Verify that the problems have been solved.
Has your solution improved the areas you had trouble with? How do you measure success when it comes to solving issues in your own company? Is it increased revenue, a greater audience or better management of resources? This is a subjective measure according to the initial problem and the solution applied, but none the less, it has to be constantly tracked, analysed and actioned upon.
10. Find out how much time is needed to solve the problem.
How much is your business affected by these challenges? According to the severity of the problem, lack of action could have long-term effects on your company. Taking a look at Yahoo’s business model, their failure to see themselves as a tech company, and poor management over the course of a few decades has resulted in them being acquired by Verizon. Sometimes it could take up to a few months, a few years, or even decades before your problems catch up and affect your business.
11. Think about the added value fixing your problems brings.
What added value should resolving the issue(s) bring to your company? It could be improved services, a more reliable business model or even greater revenue. It all depends on what you set the expected results to be, but keep that in check all the time.
12. Consider the amount you’re willing to pay.
According to your budget, there will always be cheaper or more expensive options, but what you need to consider is that you may not need to sacrifice quality for the price. In order to meet the expected outcomes, one must be aware that sacrificing quality might put your business in a disadvantaged position, with different results than expected.
13. Affording the cost of the solution
Can you afford the cost of the solution? According to your priorities and how urgent it is to fix the problem, you must always consider whether your budget allows you to do so. For small companies, it is considerably much harder to choose services which exceed a certain price range. And, more often than not, the price is one of the few denominators when it comes to opting for a certain service.
14. Acknowledge other options, if there are any.
How might you obtain that solution? Is there any other option? In case your budget could not allow you to choose a specific service, there could be other cheaper alternatives. When it comes to advertising, a good amount of companies opt to use social media in order to reach and stay connected to their customers, instead of paid advertising.
15. Validate the diagnose
How do you validate the diagnose? After running through this exercise and discovering what concerns your business might encounter, right experts can hop in and diagnose further and progress in a later strategy session.
As a advertising agency, we help our clients diagnose their problems when it comes to 3D visualisations, branding, and interactive applications. We make sure to offer our clients customisable solutions, fitted to their specific needs and products. In order to offer our best services, we assess and support customers throughout our whole collaboration.
Regardless of the stage your business is at, there will always be difficult areas where more work is needed. We hope this exercise will help you get better accustomed to understanding the value of the solutions you opt in for.