Like any business, we at BamBams LLC spend a lot of time thinking about how our brand is perceived by the promotional products industry. This isn’t just a yearly thought before we enter the busy show season at the start of the year; it’s a business concern that’s always top of mind for our tight-knit team.
As we entered 2017, we wanted to change our brand perception by making a statement showing who and what BamBams is. You’ll learn exactly how we reimagined our brand to appeal even more to our prospects and customers – and how you can imitate the same process with your business (and by extension, for your customers’ firms).
1. How are we perceived in the marketplace by our current customers, those who see us in passing, new leads coming in, and the distributors with whom we aren’t currently working?
2. What are the real and perceived differences between our company and our competitors? How do those differences affect our lead-generation efforts?
3. How can we accelerate positive impressions of BamBams while changing our “perceived” identity in the industry?
Usually, if business owners learn that prospects or customers have a perception about their brand that they’re not happy with, they fall back on strategic marketing tactics to influence their position. For example, you could use content marketing initiatives like blogging, social media, video and search engine optimization (SEO) to change how your company is perceived. We feel the problem with this approach is that these are all essential marketing functions that you need to tweak and optimize on a monthly basis, which means you can’t always rely on them to help you alter your current marketplace identity.
When a brand finds itself in this position, the team tends to opt for a more strategic change, often launching a rebrand to help positively position themselves within their industry. An effective rebrand isn’t simple; you have to be ready for the work that goes along with it.
There’s a lot of research, careful thought, time and money that firms invest into the rebranding process. However, you can simplify how you think about your approach by breaking the process down into two components: aesthetic or analytical. In other words, you want to look at the art of your brand and the science in your business- specific data, such as what you aggregate in your CRM systems, ESP traffic, or your website or social media impressions and interactions.
Before you decide it’s time to rebrand your firm, do some honest soul-searching. Remember, many business owners think changing their logo is a rebrand. Smart marketers, however, do their due diligence well before they ever engage the graphic design department about a potential rebrand. Start by doing research on your company, your product offerings and market positions before you decide to move forward.
What Your Data Can Tell You At BamBams, the internal data we review to learn about how our brand is viewed are: the numbers our CRM software shows us and the numbers we get back from ESP, Google Analytics, and Facebook Insights. This data tells us how our customers interact with us, how they engage with us and how our branding is perceived. We also have other internal data we’ve collected about our brand recognition through phone calls, surveys and event attendance.
Click here to see a larger version of this image.
The BamBams teams carefully considered and answered these questions, and we’re happy to share our responses with you.
This list of questions will help you start thinking about your products, customers and your perceived brand identity. More important than that, thinking through these questions helps you understand how they all interconnect. So stop: Think about how your company is perceived. It’s not just about your logo, your colors and your typefaces. It’s about who you are, what you offer and, most importantly, what you actually deliver on regularly.
1. What’s the perception of your company? More often than not, we were perceived by prospects and customers as a one-product company, or a company that only does sports marketing promos and game-day giveaways. We wanted to ensure that our brand was filled with vitality and trust, as well as potency, and steadiness in the years to come. As we always say, “We’re more than just BamBams.”
2. Does that perception of your company need to change? It most certainly does. As of January 2017, Bam-Bams had more than 1,500 active products in our line. We’ve built a company with a foundation of being customer- first-focused with a strong product line. That being said, one of our core strengths is product sourcing. That’s also where we can outshine the rest of the market solely based on how we operate. We’re unique in that aspect.
3. If you answered “yes” to question 2, how should that public perception change? For example, we changed our perception by following a strategic marketing plan, developing relationships, and our original core customer focus of sticking to our word, never over-promising, and always delivering to the best of our abilities. For more information about strategic marketing, contact BamBams.
4. Do you need to clarify our offerings? Without a doubt, our company did. We always ask ourselves, “What’s the public perception of our company?” People viewed us as a sports marketing, game-day giveaway company. We’re a lot more than that, and we wanted to communicate that.
5. What value-adds do your products and services give your customers? For BamBams, this answer could go on indefinitely; it’s really more about our services than our 1,500-plus different products. We’re nimble. We’re sourcing experts, with company-owned and -operated offices in China that allow us to produce the smart and accurate products our customer base requires. Our manufacturing facilities allow us to produce custom products better than other suppliers in the industry. We’ve maintained a position of reliability, honesty and a customer-focused brand that delivers.
6. How much “equity” do you have in your current branding? When it comes to equity in our 2016 branding, we had a lot from both a visual brand identity perspective, and a perceived vision of who BamBams is. Since 2005, we’ve held a strong position as a company that grows on an expanded product line and a strong customer service offering. But in reality, we’ve been much more than that for a long time.