It’s 2013, and time to set those New Year’s resolutions. But why stop at the individual ones? Every brand, whether a mom-and-pop store or a Fortune 500 company, should also be setting goals for the new year. So even if you fail to cut down on the red meat and hit the gym, at least your brand has a fighting chance to succeed with the following five resolutions:
Even brands can get love handles. But unfortunately, theirs aren’t the type that can hide behind a winter sweater. So this year, do something about it. Pick up your Shake Weights and start Jazzercising!
Start by imagining your ideal brand body image, the core of what your brand stands for. Then take a look in the mirror and get rid of everything else that doesn’t reinforce that image. Do away with embellishments on your graphics, cut down on bloated sub-brands and hit the stair stepper to whittle down claims and messaging communication.
Like a newly purchased, vacant home, your brand starts off empty and clean. Over time, however, clutter builds and rooms get disorganized (maybe you’ve even put an addition on the house). Some brands need just a little spring cleaning while others desperately need to make a cameo on and episode of Hoarders. Either way, 2013 is a perfect time to get organized.
Take a look at your brand home. Do you have overlapping products, features or offerings? Can you get rid of one and make the other stronger? Can they merge? How about your segmentation? Your brand segmentations or sub-brands function as the rooms in your home. These rooms can have distinction, but they should all feel as if they’re under the same roof. Embrace brand feng shui!
3. Spend More Time with Family and Friends
Your brand family’s ideas, joys and frustrations will give you valuable insights and help you steer your brand in the right direction. For instance, only someone close to you is going to alert you to that spinach stuck in your teeth. So whether it’s through Facebook, Twitter or an entirely new social medium, start engaging with the people who use your brands. And don’t forget to call your mother.
Don’t emulate, innovate. All too often, brands are content with “me, too,” playing it safe and sticking close to the pack. Trying something new means taking risks, but choosing to do nothing can also be a risk, so don’t let that stop you.
If you play it too safe, how can you expect to be a leader in your field? It is important, however, to stop short of recklessness. Innovations can be large or small, but they need to be formulated and implemented responsibly. That means figuring out if what you’re setting out to do fits with your brand persona. Trying something new for stunt daredevil Johnny Knoxville would be quite different than for renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma.
After working your way through your 2013 goals, take a good look at your progress. Your brand now looks fit and trim, organized, socially connected and innovative, so don’t fall back into old habits! This is perhaps the most important New Year’s resolution of them all.
When February 1st rolls around, 90% of the people who signed up for a gym membership in January are nowhere to be found. Don’t let your brand be among the dropouts! Keep improving and creating a more positive and engaging brand experience, one that you can carry through many years to come.