Should your brand communication be always customer centric?

Content is the king, but did someone tell us communication is the key? And when it comes to a brand’s voice within the cacophony of hundreds of brands aiming to create their share of voice within almost the same space in consumer’s minds, this key becomes all the more crucial. Loyalty is an unkind word these days and the same applies to any brand also pretty well. Building brand loyalty is among the biggest challenges faced by marketers and brand communicators.

With continuous growth in the use and adoption of new age media, brands need to continually reinvent themselves to establish a fit into the social media environment. Brands are like human beings and us as end-users, associate with brands somewhat in a similar fashion that we relate to our fellow beings. There is expression, drama, sympathy, feeling, likening, attachment, love, preference, hate, dislike, and disenchantment equally applicable in the brand’s relationship with its audience, which cannot be ignored at all.

Is there storytelling in your brand’s communication message that resonates well with what’s going on in your audience’s mind? Does it communicate the difference it offers vis-à-vis your competitors?  Does it communicate the company’s goals without ignoring the buyer personas? Does it overpromise in delivering the value or it’s just there in meeting what the customer needs without being perfect? Does it complicate the communication to be creative or it addresses everything simply and lucidly? Many such questions and their appropriate answers ensure how strong brands perforate the psyche of their customers and hang-in there for a longer period.

It’s not just about quick-fix communication of attracting and engaging the potential customers and converting them into long-term patrons. It doesn’t work that way. Brands too, like human relationships, work on a long-term phenomenon. And the audience reactions in the age of social media are visible very fast. We experience many times brands resorting to too many promotional messages, sending irrelevant messages, posting too many Tweets and Facebook posts, etc., may also not go well with the audience. In such cases, when the communication isn’t properly crafted, messaging isn’t appropriate and focussed, coupled with usage of too many jargons, etc., easily leads the audience to unfollow the brands. 

Such are the times of social media communication, which can bring in gains and losses both in rapid time. It boils down to how well you know your customers, how much insights into their minds, what are their buying patterns, what kind of content they are consuming and how well you can understand the intent of your customers. All of this leads to the creation of your communication, which has just right words, language, expression, approach and messaging that’s able to hit the right chord in the minds of your customers. 

It is the communication that establishes a bond, creates a relationship, enhances liking and builds loyalty between the brand and its audience. And it doesn’t have to be mathematically perfect but just simple, normal and relevant to the audience’s current state of mind. Honesty and transparency are some basics, on which all relationships thrive upon in real life situations and the same applies to brand communications as well. If the brand communicators can generate trust among the audience, the next steps of customer acquisition and sales become a smooth process.

Like human beings are not perfect, brands also need not be perfect at all times, but they should remain relevant to their audience. Brand communications remaining customer-centric at all times, will always strengthen brand equity and enhance brand loyalty.

The views and opinions published here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher.

Praveen Nagda
Praveen Nagda is the CEO of Peregrine Public Relations, a full-service corporate communications and public relations consultancy firm delivering a pan-India reach to its clients. He also heads White Coffee, an independent events & celebrity engagement company.

Praveen has been closely associated with many national and international events related to cinema for children, art and culture. He has a well-rounded experience that cuts across all key sectors of PR & Corporate Communications.

He started his career with URJA Communications, an advertising agency specialising in technology brands, where he was instrumental in developing the PR division. Post this, he had a stint with Horizons Porter Novelli, a global public relations consultancy. Thereafter, he was heading the IT & Telecom division at Clea PR, a leading Indian public relations and communications company followed by a fairly long stint with Omnicom Group agencies viz. TBWA\India and Brodeur India.

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