3 Ways to Win Reopening
Clearly things have changed and there’s no playbook on how to succeed in the future.
I believe the key to commercial success in America’s reopening is a renewed focus on the customer; understanding how they’ve changed, what their new expectations of you and your competitors are - and re-engaging with themon that basis as they sort and reorganize their everyday lives.
This suggests taking three decisive steps:
1. Rolling up our sleeves to innovate and embrace all the change that makes doing business with you simpler, more convenient, more honest, and safer than ever before.
- Thinking from the outside-in and renewing your respect for the customer by placing her at the center of the enterprise
- Understanding what she values most about you now, today, not yesterday, and addressing her with appropriate respect and reassurance
- Re-examining everything about your pre-COVID-19 go-to-market strategy; which may suggest answering these questions: 20-Questions-to-a-Better-Business-and Brand
- Looking beyond short-term sales transactions to long -term relationships
- Viewing marketing horizontally across the company, not just as a function or a silo, where everyone’s focused on the care and feeding of the customer...
- Being a brand, not a product verging on a commodity; knowing precisely what you stand for to your customers and investing additional, authentic new meaning in it
2. Topping up if not completely re-staging your brand and every way it touches your prospects and customers: physically, digitally, socially.
- Bringing heightened empathy and transparency to your brand, purchase, and customer experience.
- While first beginning at the beginning by understanding and empathizing with your employees as they deliver the customer experience, the business, and the brand. Obviously they’ve been dramatically disrupted like everyone else, and if they’re not firing on all cylinders your business won’t either...
- Understanding and empathizing with your customers; questioning everything you thought you knew; acknowledging their new anxieties and confusion.
- Becoming better listeners in the process; better than you were before and better than your competitors are, and then being - and being seen to be - both more accessible and responsive as a result.
3. Finally, winning in thenext normalwill mean recreating your messaging to communicate change to far more stressed and less sure, and therefore more skeptical and selective, customers and prospects…
- This will require new storytelling...
- Conveying real innovation across your brand experience
- That your business and brand are both safe and secure
- That you’ve changed, innovating beyond what your customers have always loved about you to meet their new expectations
- And then reaching out in new and unexpected ways
- With clearer, more relevant, reassuring and forgive me, more honest messaging – which all point to new, more unique, and proprietary campaigns
- While testing, measuring, learning, and refining frequently as you go
About the Author: As the Founder and Principal of Five Mile River Marketing, Lou helps companies from the Fortune 500 to venture backed start-ups look ahead, embrace change, and sustain success. A versatile business strategist, Lou’s expertise in marketing, branding, and innovation have made him a trusted advisor to some of the world’s most enduring businesses and well-regarded brands, including: AT&T, Castrol, Citigroup, Fed Ex, Labatt, Nestlé, Nikon, P&G, Sara Lee, Schweppes, and UPS. Five Mile River Marketing offers services from defining the value proposition and go-to-market strategy to leadership facilitation and alignment; from business and integrated marketing planning to creating a dynamic brand positioning; and from how to become a truly consumer-centric organization to effective corporate, marketing, and employee communications.