Magazine article Marketing


Magazine article Marketing


Article excerpt

Brand honesty reaps rewards

Rachel Brushfield, marketing consultant and coach, Energise Brand Communications, London SE17

Can any brand, especially service brands afford not to say sorry? ('Sorry is no longer the hardest word', Marketing, October 12).

With consumers increasingly promiscuous and demanding, it is even more important to show honesty, sincerity, integrity and humility in dealing with any hiccups that occur, whether a one-off or recurring problem.

What's the alternative--arrogance and to stick your head in the sand? Research shows that consumers whose problem is dealt with well become even more loyal to the brand and company and tell people about their experience in a positive way. Positive word of mouth is one of the most powerful and cost-effective marketing tools there is.

'Emotional capital' is not just about looking after employees, it's about looking after and nurturing the interests of consumers for a long and sustained relationship-through ups and downs, like any relationship.

The analogy between brands and people extends beyond personality and values; humans aren't infallible, and they make mistakes, as do companies. Being honest, owning up to a genuine error and apologising will get you far more consumer brownie points than being in denial and brushing things under the carpet. The capital coffers can soon run dry by failing to apologise when it's due. Sorry really isn't the hardest word to say aka Elton John -- after all, it's only two syllables.

Don't let institutions rip you off in hunt for good sonic branding

Dan Jackson, founding partner, the sonic brand company, London NW1

Jeremy Bullmore and Giles Lury both wrote articles on sonic branding in the same issue (Marketing, October 12). I am crying tears of joy. It is fantastic to see the fruits of our labour in an industry that is waking up to the power of sound. …

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