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Pixlr Review vLOG – MKTG 3685

Pixlr is a free online (or mobile) tool that lets you edit photos using an intuitive interface. You can choose from your own photos, create a photo from scratch, or my favorite feature, choose one from thousands of stock images, all for free. It’s simple to use and continuously saves as you are working so you never lose your place or accidentally delete a project by closing your browser. This free tool is especially useful to those that want quick, professional editing done quickly and don’t want to pay a premium price for a handful of features. That gets my stamp of approval!

Learning Curve: 4/5 stars
Free Capability: 5/5 stars
Functionality: 4/5 stars
Price: FREE!

How to Reach Your Target Market Through Segmentation

You can have the best product or service in the world but no matter how good it is you need to find the right target market for it. This where marketing segmentation becomes essential. This marketing strategy allows you to identify the various types of customers you want and have. This helps you reach them with the right product and the right message.

How does market segmentation help you find your target market?

Market segmentation by definition is the process of dividing a broad population or target market into subgroups of consumers according to certain shared factors. These can be based on demographics, psychographics, and geographic location. A single individual could fall into various different segments. In a way, we all share some common needs or interests with everyone. We might share common interests with some people, we might live in the same area, or we may be the same age. Each of those subgroups could be a market segment for your brand or company. Through segmentation, you can define your market which will help you understand their needs and wants. This allows you to focus your campaign on your target market which will yield better results than a broad campaign.

Keep in mind that each industry is different so segmentation strategies can vary for different businesses. 

What segmentation strategy should you use?

You should use all of the categories in your research however, some might be more beneficial than others if you’re short on time and budget. Before we figure out what strategy you should use we should first look into the various categories you have available to you.

1. Demographic Segmentation

Some of the most critical data on existing and potential customers are their basic demographics. This covers things like, how old are they, what is their annual income, how high is their education, etc. Demographic segmentation is often a useful way to divide up your target market, and generally a good first step in any marketing initiative.

2. Geographic Segmentation

Where people live can drastically change how they respond to interactions with your company. If you can learn where your customers live and tailor your marketing efforts to account for their local values.  This information can be useful if you’re looking into marketing internationally or if you have a local brick and mortar business.

3. Psychographic Segmentation

Some of the most subtle yet powerful marketing insights can result from this research. This research is focused on grouping your customers based on their lifestyle, attitudes, values, habits, and opinions. If you don’t know where to start with your research you can gain valuable insights through surveys and looking through your Google Analytics. You shouldn’t skip this segmentation because it helps decode the emotional elements of buying that might otherwise seem impossible to obtain.

4. Behavioral Segmentation

This type of segmentation reveals how customers interact with your particular product or service. For example how often do they buy, where do they buy, what’s their price range, etc. This allows you to position your marketing differently for those who use your product as a daily necessity versus those who see it as a luxury and use it only occasionally.

How do you apply your segmentation research?

Before you can apply your research you need to be able to interpret it. The best way to interpret the information would be to create what is called a buyer persona. This marketing tool’s purpose is to make a visual representation of your target market by applying the information you’ve gathered and turned into a real-life representation of your target market. You give this can describe this persona with your demographic information. You’ve already gained insight about them through your psychographics analysis. You understand their motivations through your behavioral research. You might think you’re done but you also should gain understanding behind their challenges with your product or service. You should also understand what challenges they face during their day. From this information, you can figure out how your product or service will better their lives. You can also figure out how you’ll reach this market since you’ve figured out what’s stopping them from buying your product or service.

Instructions for using the Market Segmentation Tool and Buyer Persona Template

Use the information described under “what segmentation strategy should you use” to help guide you in filling out the columns. If you feel stuck with understanding what is wanted in each box hover your mouse over the box and it will ask you a question that should guide you with filling in that particular box. You should fill out as much content as you can and even if it doesn’t all fit because you’ll copy and paste this information into the buyer persona. Once you’ve filled out as much of the market segmentation tool you can go down to the buyer persona template and upload an image and fill out the boxes. Once you’ve filled out the boxes you can print the template off and use it as a reference in your marketing efforts.

How to Write A Customer-Winning Positioning Statement

Written by Katie Harris | Template created by Rebecca Tilley

Tags: positioning, positioning statements, brand management, branding, how to write a positioning statement, positioning statement template

In today’s day in age it seems as if every product or service has some kind of competition. Because of this it is of increasing importance for companies to establish a brand identity and personality. Consumers know they have many choices and have the means to research different alternatives. With many different alternatives on the market consumers are looking to support companies and brands that have similar goals and values as them. Having a strong positioning statement can clearly explain to consumers who your brand is and how it is different than every other brand on the market.

But what exactly does this process look like? This article will explain positioning statements and how they can benefit a company or organization. A positioning statement template will be provided to help you learn how to write a positioning statement. Ifbranding is a goal for your business keep on reading to learn some valuable information.

What Is A Positioning Statement?

To understand how to write a winning positioning statement one must first understand what a positioning statement is. Positioning statements can be easily confused for mission and vision statements. While they all have similar elements, they do also have some crucial differences.

Positioning statement (HOW) – Over time the idea and definition of a positioning statement has evolved. The original definition of positioning a brand was the place – or position – in the consumers’ mind the brand wanted to own. But with today’s consumers being well informed and having the ability to research multiple brands easily, positioning statements must entail more than just a desired occupation in the consumers’ mind.

Positioning a brand is the process of emphasizing that brand’s distinctive and motivating attributes, keeping in mind the organization’s competitors.[1] Why keep in mind the competition? This is because brands should understand where their competitors are trying to position themselves. Doing so allows a company to find areas of opportunity and focus on how they can differentiate from the competition. It also gives an organization a chance to see what is working for other companies.

Using positioning for this kind of brand management has to be much more strategic than positioning the brand to be “the best” at whatever they do. Positioning statements need to go deeper into the brand personality. They should be credible, have some kind of significance to the audience, and of course, differentiate the brand from competitors. The positioning statement should tie the brand itself to a functional and emotional appeal, referring to relevant problems and important benefits of the target audience.

Mission Statement (WHY) – Mission statements are exactly as they sound. They state the organization’s mission and why they are conducting business. Similar to positioning statements, mission statements need to be much more strategic than saying, “Our mission is to make millions of dollars”. Yes, this does state why the organization is in business. However, no consumer is going to back that brand and its mission to make millions of dollars.

Customers understand that people go into business to make money. That’s just the function of business. Like positioning statements, mission statements should tie to an emotional or functional appeal and show that organizations have a higher purpose for conducting business.

Vision statement (WHAT or WHERE) – The terms vision and positioning statements are quite often confused with each other. Vision statements share the ideal place or position an organization wants to occupy in the consumers’ mind.

The original definition of positioning was indeed the same as a vision statement. Though, today positioning statements involve more tactics and state how the organization is going to achieve its goals. On the other hand, vision statements share what or where a company hopes to be in the future.

If you’re reading about a company and they state, “We want to make the world’s best skate shoe” or “We strive to be the first choice of moms”, that is most likely their vision statement.

Benefits to Organizations Using Positioning Statements

Positioning statements really help an organization with their brand management and branding efforts. Not only do they communicate to consumers who the brand is and how it differs from others, but positioning statements also establish a clear and cohesive focus for the organization itself. Having a clear and cohesive focus allows the company to target potential employees and customers who more closely align to the organization as a brand.

On top of that, positioning statements give organizations room for growth. Remember the original definition of positioning, the desired place an organization wants to take in the consumers’ mind. Positioning statements share a company’s aspirations and goals, giving the organization itself something to strive for and achieve. When used correctly positioning statements can facilitate and be a source of inspiration, motivation, and drive.

This kind of positioning is vital to brand management because it takes the basic tangible aspects of the product and builds the intangibles in the form of an image in people’s minds. [2]

How to Write an Effective Positioning Statement

Now it’s time to put all this information to use! Use our positioning statement template below to write a positioning statement for your company or organization. We have included some words and phrases to get you thinking about your target market and the unique benefit your company or organization offers.

Simply just click and start crafting your positioning statement. Keep in mind the information gained from this post on what a positioning statement is and how it can assist with branding efforts. If you find this post and tool to be useful, pass it along to your colleagues or friends so they can learn how to write a winningpositioning statement!

Tips For Creating Your Positioning Statement

Now that you have the template, you can begin to plug in the details of your business. Keep the following tips in mind while creating your positioning statement: less is more. It is important to make the statement unique and memorable but also brief, clear and simple. It needs to communicate the business’ core values while also differentiating yourself from you competitors in a minimal amount of words.


[1]  Kapferer (1992) - Walker, Julie L.G. “Mission Statement Creation and
Dissemination in Service Organizations: Reaching All Employees to Provide
Unified Organizational Direction.” Cornerstone, Minnesota State
University Mankato, Jan. 2021, cornerstone.lib.mnsu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1064&context=ctamj.
[2] Temporal (2002)- Walker, Julie L.G. “Mission Statement Creation
and Dissemination in Service Organizations: Reaching All Employees to Provide
Unified Organizational Direction.” Cornerstone, Minnesota State University
Mankato, Jan. 2021,
cornerstone.lib.mnsu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1064&context=ctamj.

A Very Simplified Way on How to Calculate Customer Lifetime Value (LTV)

Customer Lifetime Value (LTV) has been said to be one of the most important marketing metrics for your business. In fact, you’ll find hundreds of articles, eBooks, and guides to teach you why and how to use this important figure.

But plain and simple… this metric can be confusing when first learning about it.

If you’re reading this now, then chances are that you’re still confused with LTV and you need a simple guide to give you the exact details of what it is and an even easier guide on how to calculate LTV for your business.

So let’s break it out for you. This article will give you a simple overview of what LTV is, how it can help in your business, and a simple printable PDF calculation formula sheet for you to get an accurate LTV number for your business.

What is Customer Lifetime Value?

According to HubSpot, Customer Lifetime Value is defined as…

The metric that indicates the total revenue a business can reasonably expect from a single customer account.

To add to this definition, LTV is the total revenue a business can reasonably expect over the lifespan of a single customer account. It’s the revenue you can expect to receive from one customer over the course of the time they do business with you.

To give some context for better understanding, let’s take Disney as an example. CRM Magazine states that Dinseyland has a Customer Lifetime Value of $62,000.

That means that on average, a single customer will pay roughly $62,000 over the course of their lifetime on Disneyland tickets, merchandise, and other transactions.

A number like that makes you wonder how you can maximize on your personal brand and your products, doesn’t it?

How does Customer Lifetime Value help my business?

If a company has several different products, but they aren’t sure which one is the most effective and/or favored by customers, what can they do? Sure, they might have sales numbers to give them insight, but what if those products are priced differently? How do you accurately tell which product is doing the best, especially with both new and repeat customers?

This is where Customer Lifetime Value (LTV) plays the perfect role. The LTV calculation considers the average amount of times that your products are bought by one single customer, so if you take the metric for each of your products, then you have an accurate way of knowing what areas need to improve and which areas are doing good already.

Here are a few areas in which LTV can help in your business.

  1. Overall customer experience
    1. The longer a customer decides to purchase from your company, the better customer experience your company has. If you see that on average, customers are only buying once, then you know you have a problem. The calculations going into LTV will give you an accurate picture of what you need to improve with your customers experience such as helping customers receive a good experience to buy again or making sure that unique customers turn into repeat buyers.
  2. Customer support
    1. Great customer support can make all the difference in those who buy once and those who buy over and over again. The more you have repeat buyers, the better your LTV will be. Consider this as you calculate your customer’s lifetime value and discover better ways to improve your customer support.
  3. Upsell Efforts
    1. When you take the LTV calculation from each of your products, you accurately know which products are doing well and which ones aren’t. When you see that one product is underperforming, this could be a great opportunity to either sell that product differently or upsell a better product to existing customers.

If you know your LTV, you know exactly where to allocate your marketing budget and how to spend your time effectively. It’s as simple and as powerful as that.

How do I calculate LTV for my business?

Now for what you’ve been waiting for. How do you actually calculate Customer Lifetime Value for your business?

To be honest, it’s an easy process with the right formula.

Once you calculate the numbers for yourself, the above content will make a lot more sense. You’ll understand what can improve and how you can use LTV specifically for your business.

Included is an LTV formula sheet and guide. On this sheet, you’ll see 4 different steps that will get you to your Customer Lifetime Value marketing metric number. Please note that the formula provided is one of the most basic ways to calculate your LTV. You’ll find different and more in-depth formulas on the web, but this one should give you what you need to get started with the important metric.

You can download the PDF by clicking here.

Summing up the basics

Although complicated to understand at first, Customer Lifetime Value can be your guide to better customer experience and more growth as a company. Do what you can to understand this metric completely, and it will change the way you look at your customers and your marketing process.

References

https://blog.hubspot.com/service/how-to-calculate-customer-lifetime-value
https://www.destinationcrm.com/Articles/ReadArticle.aspx?ArticleID=57620

Net Promoter Score

The Net Promoter Score (NPS) in marketing helps companies determine customers’ overall experience. If a consumer is absolutely positive they want to share or recommend your business to someone else they know, you know as a company that you are doing pretty well in your customer service department. It’s important to gather data and analytics about your company to improve your business overall.

I have developed a quick and easy template for you to upload into your qualtrics account to start your NPS journey. It’s free to sign up if you don’t already have an account. First, you would need to log in and click on create a project, create from existing, from a file, and finally click on the QSF file I have provided. The first fundamental question you should start out with is, “How likely are you to recommend us to a friend or colleague?” Depending on your customer’s response, you can add different questions tailored to your business to help determine why they chose that specific number on the scale. Some suggestions of other questions you could add on to the survey are, “If you could improve anything in our business, what would it be and why?” or “Do you have any suggestions for us?”

NPS is based off a scale of 1-10 with 1 being the least likely and 10 being the most likely to recommend your business. The first numbers 1-6 are you detractor scores, numbers 7-8 are your passives, and numbers 9-10 are your Promoters. To get your Net Promoter Score, you have to take your promoters and subtract them from the detractors. The more promoters you get, the higher your score will be.

Your detractors are those who didn’t have a good experience with your company, and there will always be those consumers who didn’t get what they want or are really hard to please. Sometimes things just happen that way. Your passives had a somewhat enjoyable experience, but it wasn’t that memorable or at least not enough to share it with others. Your promoters are your most loyal customers, and you want all of your customers to feel this way. Think for a moment, what is something your company can do to improve to help your customers feel more of a VIP status?

You could send out an email with the survey and maybe provide some sort of incentive for those who do fill out the review like a discount on their next purchase, a free product, or some other service about your business. With these valuable results, you can get from sending out this NPS survey, you can be on your way to making better changes to your business to fulfill the needs of your customers.

Do You Know Your Customers?

RATER Model

Did you know that only 1 out of every 26 unhappy customers complain? With so little data to learn from, it is important to discover gaps between customer experience and expectation. The RATER model is the solution to figure out where those gaps are. The RATER model was developed in 1990 and is an evolution of the SERVQUAL method. It is based on the idea that customers rate the quality of service provided by comparing their experiences with their expectations. The goal of this model is to show which areas the customers’ expectations differ from the actual offered quality.

RATER is an acronym based on five dimensions: Reliability, Assurance, Tangibles, Empathy, and Responsiveness. Your customers will be evaluating your service on based on these dimensions whether they are doing so consciously or not. So, let’s break down these metrics.

Reliability

A reliability issue could mean that you fail to deliver as promised or that your customers misunderstood what service you are providing. Benchmarks that you should consider focusing on are: timeliness, consistency, regularity, and accuracy. So, ask yourself, do you deliver the service a customer expects, when the customer expects?

Assurance

Your customers first need to know why they should trust you; then you must reinforce that trust by ensuring reliable service. You must meet their expectations by not only proving that you are credible but address their concerns competently. Benchmarks that you should focus on are: competency, respect, credibility, confidentiality, and an assurance of safety and security.

Does your organization inspire confidence?

Tangibles

Tangibles is a tricky one. It is the physical aspect of your business. Often, your customers won’t notice unless it is a negative experience for them. Depending on your service, those physical benchmarks that you should on are: facilities, equipment, technology, and employees. The best question to ask yourself is, does your company present itself professionally?

Empathy

Caring about the customer and empathizing with them is important. But there is someone else you have to think about when it comes to this metric. The stakeholder. You can show empathy by providing: Access to staff, services and information; clear, appropriate and timely communication; understanding the stakeholder; appropriate service for customer needs; and individualized attention. A question to ask yourself is if your team members are understanding and empowered to solve problems?

Responsiveness

If you want to win the heart of the customer and convert them into a lifelong buyer. You must show a willingness to help by providing prompt service through the channels they prefer. This means your customer service must be accessible by phone, email, text, and even social media. Benchmarks to focus on are: Willingness to help, prompt attention to requests, problem resolution, complaint handling, and flexibility. A question to ask is, does your team address queries within the expected time frame?

The RATER model is the best way to organize and evaluate customer feedback. If you want to identify gaps between customer expectations and your service, use this model. Now you tell me, are these the only metrics we should measure? Comment below what other metrics should be included and why.

Why Do You Need a Sales Funnel?

So you as a company are developing marketing strategies to figure out how to lead people to be aware of your product or service and then lead them to a final purchase and then even to stay loyal customers with you. Most the time this doesn’t just happen by chance, so a strategy needs to be put in place. There are many ways to go about this situation by studying past company statistics, using marketing software or trying to come up with ideas on the spot. The best way is to use business templates. For this specific situation, it would be smart to implement the sales funnel. The sales funnel is a perfect way when you already have a product or service created and are wanting to get it out there and have it lead to sales. The sales funnel has five main phases: Awareness, Interest, Consideration, Engagement and Closing. Why a funnel you may ask? The reason this analogy is used it at the beginning of the process there are a lot of people that join in but as the steps progress slowly people drop out so it begins to narrow. Starting out with 100% of people in the awareness stage can lead to only 5% sticking it out for the closing stage. Before diving into the sales funnel phases you need to figure out your marketing segment and gather data on your potential customers. This can lead to adjusting your insights to focus on relevant problems and key selling points.

Here are three key reasons why you need to use a sales funnel:
• Nail your Selling System –
• Identifying the steps you take to close a sale is a prerequisite to selling better.
• Once you have your system in place you can then take steps to improve the process.
• A visual representation of your Sales Funnel will ensure that you can apply it to your business, test it, and develop it.
• Manage your day-to-day – Once you create a sales funnel within a CRM, you can view the progress of all your deals at a single glance, including the number of deals in each stage of the funnel. This allows you to answer questions like
• Are there high value deals at the closing stage today?
• Do we have enough leads to keep us occupied for a while?
• How long does it take for customers to get through the my sales funnel?
• Forecast earnings – When you apply a probability to each sales stage (i.e., leads in the first stage have a 10% chance of closing, 20% in the second stage, etc.) you can multiply this by the value of each deal and thus find out how much revenue to expect overall.
• For example- Out of 1000 people who see my ad, 10% will visit my page. (100 leads)
• Out of these 100 leads, 20% will move through to the next stage (20 leads)
• Through this process you will be able to predict how many customers will get to the closing stage and convert. In this case, mostly like 5 leads will convert (as stages progress, likelihood of conversion increases)

Tool Template

Instructions/Guides/etc for using the tool

In order to use this tool effectively, you must being with the end in mind. What does sale mean in your business or industry. Once you have that set, you will be able to think through the process of your customer and how they will get to that ultimate conversion.

1. Awareness- To start off you need to let your audience know your product or service exists. You can also make someone aware that they have a problem and you can solve it for them. Think of your personal brand and create buzz around it to give it credibility and make people start thinking about your brand. Social media and websites are good tools to create awareness.
2. Interest- There are a lot of options out there so how are you going to draw them to your company? You need to hook them right off the bat with creative content and a solving to their problem or show good quality and a good deal. This is a hard but very important step.
3. Consideration- You have caught their attention and now they are considering your company in their options of what to choose. This is the middle of the funnel where customers can get comfortable with you so keep them invested. Interact and give them any feedback or answer any questions that they have.
4. Engagement- The prospect is looking more and more into deciding, possibly with you. They have looked at what you have to offer and maybe have compared it to other companies. Depending on the price and intensity of the product or service, they might have been thinking for a while if they need it or can afford it or want to follow through with it.
5. Closing- The deal is official. They have either made the final purchase or signed a contract. You want them to stay as loyal customers and tell their friends that they like your company and recommend you.

Why?: The Product Life Cycle

What is the Product Life Cycle?
The product life cycle (PLC) is the course of a product’s sales and profits over its lifetime. There are 4 stages to this cycle: 1. Introduction 2. Growth 3. Maturity and 4. Decline. This cycle helps companies determine and foresee where their product will go, and what moment in time improvements and changes need to be made.

Introduction Stage
This is the point when a company introduces a new product to the public. The company determines pricing strategies, whether it wants to use price skimming, penetration pricing, bundle pricing, etc. This is the time the company determines how to advertise, and will spend more money on advertising than it makes on selling the new product. Also, it’s important in this stage to reach out to early adopters or other influencers in the market.

Growth Stage
In the second phase, the company is hopefully seeing an increase in sales and a decrease in manufacturing costs. But, it doesn’t want to get too comfortable. In the growth stage, the company should be looking for ways to innovate and add value to its customers. It may be looking for options to expand its target audience and break into a more massive market. Look at different options of distribution, what is working well, and what could work better.

Maturity Stage
Maturity is when a product has reached a peak in sales and costs of production have dropped. This stage is when the company should make changes to the product so the maturity stage lasts longer and the lifetime of the product is extended. This can be done by launching a new version of the product. Apple is a great example of this. They are always launching a new and improved product to keep their customers interested and satisfied. Evaluate where the company’s prices are sitting and whether there is a need to increase or decrease the price based on cost and current revenue.

Decline Stage
The fourth stage is the time to contemplate whether to let a product fade out or not. The company can choose to invest in more marketing, an added feature, or another product to add to your line. But if it does choose to let a product fade out, it is good to have an exit strategy! The way a product exits the market says a lot about the company and leaves a reputation, so it’s best to do it tastefully.
The product life cycle is important in helping products take off and become successful. Always be ready to change and improve throughout the product lifecycle and this will create a successful product.

McKinsey 7 S Model

Any good business owner knows that there is always room for growth and improvement. But how can you as a business owner see the bigger picture? How can you view your company or team as a whole and recognize the areas that need improving? You need to be able to see how the different aspects of your business work together, and the McKinsey 7 S Model is a great way to do so.

The McKinsey 7 S Model is a tool to help you analyze your business or organization to determine if it is set up to succeed in its current state and then use what you glean from the process to learn and better align your organization to your goals and objectives.

Developed in the 1980’s by Tom Peters and Robert Waterman of McKinsey & Company, this model can be applied to the company as a whole all the way down to a small team within a department.

So, here’s how it works. There are seven elements of this model, divided into two groups, hard and soft. Hard elements are those that can indeed be defined or identified and easily changed or influenced by management. Soft elements are often more difficult to describe and are influenced more by culture. These elements are more important than hard ones if the company or organization wants to be successful.

The seven elements are as follows:

Strategy: A plan created to support and construct improvements and gain superiority over the competition.
Structure: the way an organization or business is organized, including the hierarchy of positions and communications.
Systems: the defined day-to-day procedures that staff carry out to effectively and efficiently do their jobs.
Shared Values: originally called “superordinate goals,” are the core values of the organization that are reflected in the organization’s structure, strategy, and systems.
Style: the style of leadership adopted.
Staff: the employees and their general assignments.
Skills: the actual skills and knowledge of the employees working for the organization.

For an organization to perform to the best of its abilities, these seven elements must work in harmony together. The 7 S Model helps to identify strong and weak points, which allows for growth and improvement. It can help guide organizations in identifying the kinds of questions it needs to be asking and answering for it to know how to best move forward and improve from Point A to Point B.

This model is also ideal to consult whenever an organization is undergoing any kind of change. By checking in and keeping tabs on where the organization stands with each S during the change, you can ensure that things continue to run smoothly and effectively.

I have created a worksheet for you to use to evaluate where you and your business stand and identify what needs improving or tweaking.

After identifying the specifics of each S for your business it is time to evaluate where they each stand in relation to one another. Here are some basic guidelines to help you do so:

You should start with your Shared Values, compare them to the first three (hard) elements. Do they support one another? Are they consistent? If not identify what changes should be implemented.

Then, take a look at the first three elements on their own. Do they support each other?
Now, look at the last four (soft) elements. Do they support the first three? Do they support each other?

In just those three simple steps you will be able to determine the relationships between all seven S’s. By answering the questions within the worksheet, you can find the shortcomings and inconsistencies that are preventing your seven elements from fully connecting to one another and creating a strong organization.

After determining where your organization stands within the 7 S Model, you will next need to determine what you think the optimal organizational design for your business should be. Figure out what your organization should look like to meet this new standard, and then determine a way to achieve it.
Making the necessary changes is a one step at a time process. You will need to make a change or two, give yourself and your organization time to adjust, and then re-analyzed to see if further improvements need to be made. In the end, the goal is to end up with better performance, and a more cohesive organization that supports itself from the inside out.

In short, the simple process behind the 7 S model is as follows:
1 – Identify the areas or seven S’s that are not effectively aligned.
2 – Determine your optimal organization design.
3 – Decide where, what, and how the necessary changes should be made.
4 – Make the necessary changes.
5 – Repeat!

The 7 S Model is indeed a helpful tool in keeping tabs on your business as a whole in a more simplified process. Once you get the ball rolling it is easy to maintain and check back with as you deem necessary. As you continue to use this tool, your business will continue to grow stronger, and your organization will only get better and better.

4 Ways to Strengthen Your Brand with Keller’s Brand Equity Model

Customers create and establish feelings and thoughts regarding your brand with every experience they have with it. These can be negative or positive. Keller’s Brand Equity Model is all about taking control of what those feelings and thoughts are. You need to shape the experiences to create the desired thoughts and feelings about your brand. Controlling these parts of your brand creates strong Brand Equity. Strong Brand Equity will mean more people will buy from you. So here we go, how can you improve your brand?

1. Brand Identity – Who are you?
Identifying who you will help you to stand out for customers to recognize you and be aware of you. But remember, awareness is not always a good thing. You need to make sure the perceptions that people have are the desired ones. This is the important part of establishing who you are and what your brand identity is. So how do you do this? Research your market to understand who your customers are, identify how they decide between your brand and another brand, what decision-making process they go through, and find out how well your brand stands out during this process that they go through.

2. Brand Meaning – What are you?
What does your brand mean and what does it stand for? There are two areas to focus in. Performance and Imagery. How does your product perform? Does it meet your customer’s needs? What are the main features and characteristics? Imagery is thinking about how you meet your customer’s needs on a social and psychological level.

3. Brand Response – What do I think, or feel, about you?
Your customers responses are important for this step. Find out how they are responding. They will respond in two areas: Judgement and Feelings. People are always making judgements in these categories: Quality, Credibility, Consideration, and Superiority. Brands also make people have feelings, both about the brand and about themselves when they interact with the brand. Finding these out can help you to move forward to understand what you can do to improve the positive feelings and judgements that customers are making about your brand. How do you compare to other brands? How can you beat them? Identifying one of the positive feelings your brand is good at and using that to your advantage is key.

4. Brand Resonance – How much of a connection would I like to have with you?
Welcome to the most difficult step. The highest level. Where everyone wants to get to. Your brand resonates with your customers when they feel a deep and psychological bond with your brand. Four things happen when you achieve this. Customers are loyal repeat purchasers, they love your brand and see it as a special purchase, they feel like they are a part of a community with other customers, they are actively engaging with your brand without even purchasing it. How can you do this you ask? Focus on each category one by one and identify what specific things you can do to increase the customers in the category and their strength. Make a list of ACTIONS you can take to help these categories.

So that is how you can strengthen your brand with Keller’s model. Now go out and do it. Because your brand sucks. Especially If you are reading this. It sucks. I’m sorry. Face the facts and now go fix it.

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