Consistent brand identity is the new black

How to look hot and steal the show in online search

The universal availability of mobile devices has made communication way easier–and as a result, way more complex. The customer journey is no longer a smooth, predictable path. It’s a turbulent series of countless decisions, lofty expectations, and instant results.

How can you deliver outstanding customer experience in just a few seconds? How can you be in the right place at the right time and outshine your competitors? Do you need millions of tap-dancing giraffes clad in glittering sportcoats to toss coupons into the wind? Is there an app for that?

No, you don’t. And no, there’s not (yet). Snagging the spotlight in those decisive moments is less snazzy than you may think. Put away all the bells and whistles; the secret to sustainable success is consistency.

Step 1: Repeat.

Modern consumer behavior is built upon what Google refers to as “micro-moments” when customers turn to mobile in “I-want-to-know” or “I-want-to-buy” situations. The results that pop up on their screens determine the course of their journey in mere seconds. While such quick decisions seem spontaneous, they’re actually extremely calculated, influenced by the most powerful–and most intangible–sales asset: brand perception.

How customers perceive a brand depends on far more than the product or service that the brand provides. Yes, those are important, but the experiences surrounding them determine if a customer decides to buy, share, and buy again.

What solidifies great brand perception? Repetition. It’s harder than it sounds. Developing and maintaining a consistent voice, design, and message–not to mention packaging, onboarding, and support procedures–requires steadfast planning, dedication, and patience.

Customer engagement: when to be there

If a tap-dancing giraffe leads you to a labyrinth then skips away, you’re unlikely to find your way to the center. If you don’t encounter the tap-dancing giraffe until you’ve reached the center, you’ll be uncomfortable with this unfamiliar sight and turn back around–even if the giraffe throws coupons at you.

You need to be there in between the “I-want-to-know” and “I-want-to-buy” moments, for the “I-heard-about” and “I-can’t-decide” moments. Analyze and understand every step of the buyer journey, then set up a marketing automation strategy to ensure you engage with every customer at every critical moment. No one will purchase from a brand when they have no idea what to expect. Relevant, personalized engagement coaxes customers along from one decision to the next, building familiarity and trust.

Whether the customer journey is lengthy, like selecting an attorney or buying a house, or quick, like finding a tasty Chinese restaurant, it requires consistently active engagement in order to be seen through to the end.

Brand identity: what to look like

As shallow as it sounds, appearance is crucial to a strong brand identity. This means your design and messaging should be the same across all social channels, advertisements, and emails, and provide the same experience on desktops, laptops, and mobile devices. To win over new customers, you don’t just want to be recognizable. You want to be memorable. Your first impression should match your second, third, and 500th. Any blip in your image will cause customers to question your credibility.

If you want customers to know who you are, you have to prove that you know who you are. Again and again.

Customer experience: how to manage it

Have you heard what happens to the best-laid plans of mice and men? They often go awry. Your customer engagement strategy should account for that. If you’re consistently engaged with customer feedback, you’ll be aware of potential pain points. If you can’t prevent them, you can prepare for them. This could mean thoughtfully responding to negative reviews or adjusting large-scale operations–whatever it takes to continue delivering the quality your customers expect. Patience in the short term builds momentum in the long term. A trustworthy track record can’t be established overnight, and building it isn’t all sunshine and roses. Use negative customer feedback as a chance to improve, and share insights across all departments to keep everyone on the same page.

Deliver a consistent experience both online and offline and not only will customers come back to you–they’ll tell their friends to come, too.

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About BirdEye

With BirdEye, it’s easier than ever to get new authentic customer reviews, building trust that leads to more sales. In today’s reputation economy, BirdEye provides the eyes, ears, and algorithms necessary to create great customer experiences that keep your business at the top.

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