Branding Across Four Stages of your Customer Experience

By Christina Suter on Oct 03, 2015 at 08:25 AM in Business Issues

Branding Across Four Stages of your Customer Experience

Branding is how people get to see your business. It’s the difference between how people see McDonald’s versus how they see Lamborghini.

How do you want customers to perceive your business? Is your business upper-end? Is it everyday use?

What’s your business brand?

Are you a luxury brand or are you fast and convenient? Or are you somewhere inbetween?

My brand is upper end; people pay me well for my time and my services help fix their business. They need to know they can trust me, so I take branding seriously. Gardeners, car shops, etc they don’t require a lot or high value branding. You want to create a clear message to people that tells them what you offer.

Usually you think of customer service as something you do to support your customer after they purchase your product or use your service. But customer service goes across he full brand of your business. All four of these stages:

1. First impressions- branding affects a customer’s first impression; it’s how they perceive your level of professionalism. Write down how customers first find you, what do they see when they find you and when do they find you? Is it on a website, Yelp, in-person, Facebook, your blog, etc. Your brand is in each of those activities. How do you nurture that impression? Are you a quick product or do they spend months with you?

2. Product exploration- it’s the second stage of the purchasing cycle. How do people find out about your product? For me, people usually meet me in person, go to my website, read my blog, and speak to customers of mine. They may also have a phone conversation with me to fully understand what I do and what I can offer them. So my customers usually encounter me, my brand, and my work about 6 or 7 times before they choose to buy from me. How do people explore your product and are you giving them enough opportunities to explore your product? Do you have a clear and concise description of what your product is? My product is complex and therefore I have an entire page on my site to tell people what I do and who I serve.

3. Product purchasing- how do they buy it? From me, people use credit card or pay through Paypal. When your clients go to purchase from you, what options of payment are available to them? Is there a ‘Pay Now’ button on your website? What’s their purchase experience? Does the experience match your brand? Customize your Paypal button; send a receipt with your logo and branding on it.

4. Post Support- support for a customer after they purchase a product. This is usually where people think customer service begins. What customer service is available to them after they purchase? A phone number, an email they can use? Do you actually call or email the customer after their purchase? Your post customer service should match your price point. If you sell products for $25 you can’t afford to call people and follow up as part of your customer service. However, if people pay you $2500 you can and should invest in reaching out to your customer after they’ve purchased from you. Do you do any customer service?

There should be consistency across your brand. Identify where on the luxury to quick service range your business falls. Go through the customer experience and write down how they see you and the ways they can explore your product. How do they purchase your product? And lastly, follow up with customer service that is in alignment with your brand.