Being Passionate About Your Brand

Posted by Sarah Chew on September 4, 2012  |   No Comments »

It’s often said that a brand is more than just a logo – or the product or service itself, for that matter. What sets a successful brand apart from its competitors is passion.

If you watch TV shows about businesses, you can’t help but notice the difference between owners of thriving businesses and those who call in an expert in a last-ditch attempt to keep the doors open. Compare the enthusiastic, involved restaurant owners featured on Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” with the overwhelmed, struggling owners on the same channel’s “Restaurant: Impossible.”

The successful owners are hands-on, arriving hours before opening to prep their signature dishes, putting in a full day behind the grill, and keeping their staff motivated and customers happy. The care they put into every aspect of their business is as obvious as the joy they get from it themselves. Everyone who experiences their great food and service becomes their brand advocate, helping to spread the word that keeps the place packed.

By contrast, the struggling owners of “Restaurant: Impossible” have in common a lack of passion for what they do. Their apathy shows in the poor quality of food (many don’t even know how to cook), an evident belief that employees don’t need leadership, and a complete disconnect between how they perceive the dining experience their dwindling number of customers have and how the customers rate their own experience.

When the successful owners are asked why they got into the restaurant business, their common reply is “Because I’ve always loved cooking and creating dishes that people will enjoy.” Replies from the struggling owners range from “Because I thought it would be fun to hang around a restaurant and chat with customers,” to “I thought it would be a good investment.”

The typical “Restaurant: Impossible” outcome is that the help they receive invigorates the struggling owners. Most become passionate and optimistic, and stride with new confidence on the road to success. Others remain unmotivated, their restaurants quickly resuming their downhill trajectory.

The big take-home message: your passion is your brand’s greatest competitive advantage. Do what you love, and you’ll attract not only a strong customer base, but also those who believe in your mission and will give their best to help you achieve it – from loyal employees to conscientious vendors to strategic and creative partners. Brand passion starts with you.

 

 

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