Wednesday, July 22, 2009

What's Your Brand's Personality Quotient?

Does your brand have a winning personality—a high personality quotient or PQ? That’s a key question, because when you’re selling to Baby Boomers, they consistently seek out products and services that are believable and likeable, just like the people they trust most. That’s why one of your primary business goals should be to build a credible, friendly image using a variety of creative marketing communications, from advertising to PR to blogging.

A brand’s image is the personality that it projects. Like the Boomers, the best brand personalities are individualistic, while the worst try to be all things to all people and end up being buried beneath the clutter of the teeming marketplace. To avoid this fate, you must raise your brand’s PQ by reaching out and touching Boomers where they really live. Do that, and over time, they’ll embrace your brand, as well as your company, as you gain an ever larger share of mind and market.

Many of the most effective image builders come from Direct Marketing. Take a pioneer like L.L. Bean and a more recent success story like Victoria’s Secret, for example. These brands appeal to decidedly different market segments, yet in their own ways, they’ve built highly individualistic brand personalities that their customers have come to know and trust. Their high PQs have helped them carve out a share of mind by standing for something uniquely important with their customers. That’s why they continue to be successful.

Unlike some brands which seem to change with the seasons, L.L. and Victoria keep burnishing the same image, year after year. While other advertisers try to rebuild images instantly, as if the sheer weight of megabuck budgets can buy enduring relationships, they refine their PQs the natural way, slowing but surely. As a result, they’ve earned something money can’t buy: customer loyalty.

In my next blog, I’ll talk a little more about how to build a winning personality that Boomers can come to know and trust. So staying tuned, because a higher PQ means more profitable sales.

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