MAL 25/18 MAL25/18 - Page 65

of companies are able to live up to their brand promise all the time. This is despite clear evidence that well fulfilled brand promise ensures the sustainability of the business into the future. What affects the delivery of the brand promise? brand promise. Most members of staff may have good intentions, but their actions can be totally disconnected from the brand promise. It is therefore important to ensure that what they are saying and doing is fully aligned to the brand promise. Over-promising: This is where a brand claims what it cannot deliver in terms of product attributes, benefits and features. In this case the brand communicates what it wishes to represent rather than what it actually represents. The phrase ‘fake it till you make it’ best explains this scenario. It only takes the point of usage which is a moment of truth, to reveal the bluff and kill any possibilities of re-purchase. A promise too similar to competition: The primary role of a brand promise is to differentiate your product/service from competition. It should be a driver of uniqueness in the industry to endear your brand to its consumers. Incompatibility with internal structure: Sometime the marketing team develops a brand promise that is inconsistent with what production, supply chain, sales or HR teams believe in. This causes disconnect in the delivery of the promise since successful customer satisfaction is a company-wide effort. In such cases, it is important that internal marketing is thoroughly done to ensure that the culture and greater purpose of the whole company is aligned to the A promise that plays ‘me too’ to its competitors will not deliver on this uniqueness and will therefore be an effort in futility. The brand promise must be clear and the delivery must be in sync to ensure that the customer experiences the uniqueness throughout the brand interaction process. Failing to develop the brand promise ‘outside-in’: Brand owners must begin by understanding the customers’ needs and expectations then crafting their promises to fit. The result of this is a vigorous internal effort to provide what the customer is already expecting. Employees will always be the driving force behind a brand, so they must thoroughly understand that promise and the importance of delivering on it consistently. The fact is that most businesses face serious challenges in delivering on brand promises due to internal workplace issues as opposed to external marketplace issues. It is therefore of paramount importance that before promises are communicated to customers, a thorough audit of internal capability to deliver on them is carried out and ascertained. Mr. Joseph Kimotho is a Marketing Strategy Consultant and Managing Director of Frontier Marketing Limited. He is also a PhD (Marketing) candidate at the University of Nairobi, School of Business. You can commune with him via email at: Joseph.Kimotho@ frontiermrkting.com.