CHICAGO — Developing a unique brand identity—of which the business name is only a part—positions a laundry as one to remember … and revisit.
“Brand identity is the vision and feeling we have for our business that allows us to stand out from competitors,” explains Dennis Diaz, president of digital marketing and technology firm Spynr, which works exclusively with laundry industry businesses. “A brand is made up of a variety of aspects, including visuals, behavior traits, and how it makes you feel when interacting with them.”
Laundromats should have a brand, Diaz says, because it separates them from the “mundane chore” of doing laundry.
Once a small business has its brand in place, how can it quantify how well or how poorly it’s doing in branding its operation?
Diaz says you need to understand what your customers want in order to create an effective and appealing brand.
“One way is by asking them – that’s where customer surveys come in! Surveys are a great route for understanding the needs of today’s competitive market because they collect data from real people like yourself who have bought or frequented services offered by brands. Plus, these methods can help laundry business owners avoid making costly mistakes with their service offerings without risking anything but time invested into surveying specific audiences before launching new features or campaigns.”
Branding mistakes are common, according to Diaz. He believes that one of the worst is thinking that you know what customers want better than they do. Ignoring your consumers’ wants and desires in favor of your own selfish ambitions can lead to disaster.
“We live in an era where brands control so much more about our lives than ever before – from the clothes on our back to how we use social media,” he says. “But at times this relationship becomes unbalanced when companies forget who’s really paying them: us!”
This mistake could be as small as neglecting customer feedback or failing to quickly address problems with your services.
“All too often, people don’t even realize these things were done until after the damage had already been done because there was no effort made beforehand for success-readiness planning … a brand can help establish the identity you carry forward in how you handle things like that in your business.”
The importance of branding cannot be overstated, Diaz says, and starting early is always best.
“Your brand will guide you through the entirety of your marketing strategy, operations, financial planning—the list goes on! It’s important to get into this headspace as soon as possible so that you can really set yourself up for success.
“There are many stages in a business’s life cycle where time should not be wasted with bad decisions, but there are few things worse than wasting years establishing a company without solidifying its identity. A strong sense of self from day one leads toward all other aspects within an organization because it guides every decision made thereafter by making them cohesive under one roof: yours!”
As a brand, you have two options: set an everlasting foundation or forever change, but there’s no guarantee of success with either.
“Even the best brands struggle and fail sometimes; it’s just how life goes. Some people see these failures as mistakes to be avoided at all costs while others view failure as a chance for growth and innovation. …. It’s true that some changes are better than staying static but don’t get too attached because eventually your customers may grow bored with what you’re offering, even though it was once considered fresh on release day.”
Miss Part 1? You can read it HERE.
Have a question or comment? E-mail our editor Bruce Beggs at [email protected].