Tips and focus points to help you take your business to the next level

Welcome to your first set of success tips and focus points which will help you to take your business to the next level.

Over the coming weeks and months, you’ll receive a fresh set of topics to consider and focus on. These are critical building blocks that come together to make a significant difference to the commercial and cultural performance of your business.

Each focus point is briefly explained; why it’s critical and the role it plays in making that all-important difference for your business. This is then followed with a number of action points for you to consider and apply. Straight-to-the-point, simple, proven and hugely impactful.

Some examples of the topics:

  • ‘The Next Level’ – What is the ‘Next Level’ for your business? What does it look like? How to make it all become a reality, commercially, financially and culturally.
  • Core competencies of your business – What your business is best at, why? And what this means for the future credibility of your brand and business.
  • Target customers/clients/audiences that your business needs to strongly connect with. What you need to know about them and how that knowledge can be applied to inform and influence what is done to delight these people.
  • Vision – What your business/brand is and will be famous for. What your vision of your Next Level business looks like, in every respect – commercial, financial, organisation, people, culture and more.
  • Strategy – The focus of how you’ll achieve your vision and goals.
  • Brand – The elements of your brand – it’s DNA – and how it influences everything your business does and how it does it, to create customers/clients/audiences that love what your brand / business does, so that they strongly recommend it to others.
  • Customer / client / audience experience – what makes your brand more valuable and desirable to the customers / clients / audiences who are most valuable to your business
  • People & culture – How to create a high performance culture. How to us this to attract and retain the right talent to take your business to the next level.
  • Innovation – How to leverage innovation as a powerful connector to the most valuable customers/clients/audiences for your brand/business.

An introduction and overview of what will be covered

Simply and succinctly put this is the most effective and profitable way to take your business to the next level:

Create customers/clients/audiences who strongly recommend your brand / business to others

That’s it.

It should become the sole, unifying focus of your business.

Why? Because these customers – let’s refer to them as Brand Fans – are hugely valuable to your business. How valuable? They typically create up to 8 times their own lifetime value to your brand/business through recommendation.

So, orienting and focusing everything your business does, to delight these people, will quite simply take it to the next level in every respect.

Everything covered in the success tips and focus points is intended to help you to set up and gear your business to create these highest value customers/clients/audiences with every interaction they have with you, your people and whatever you do – products and services.

Clearly, this is valuable and powerful content for you to apply to your business. As long as your subscription is live, you’ll continue to receive it.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss any of this further, just make contact with Chris Burton at Brand Success – hello@brand-success.co.uk  / Brand.Success on SKYPE / +44 1306 400077.

Why is there focus on ‘Brand’?

When all things are considered, the role a brand plays in any business or organisation is fundamental to its success. Brands are connectors. They enable businesses to connect with the right customers, with the right products and services, with the right people, through the right channels and within the right environments.

‘Brand’ represents everything your business stands for, what you do and how business is done.  It provides the single focus and unifying clarity throughout the entire organisation of how your business is the best solution for the right customers, [those who are most valuable] and what needs to be done to ensure that they strongly recommend your business. It’s as powerful internally – at engaging the commitment of your people, as it is externally, attracting and retaining the right talent and customers to your business.

This is why there is a real focus around brand. It is the single biggest enabler to taking your business to the next level, because it touches everyone and everything.

Your first focus point – Let’s start with the end in mind

Focus point – Your Brand Fans

Your Brand Fans are customers/clients/audiences who ‘love’ what you do and how you solve their need/problem/opportunity. Your brand has earned its ‘love’ status by being valuable to these people. In short your brand has become their best solution.

So what?

Your Brand Fans are highly likely to be the least price sensitive, most profitable and highest value customers/clients/audiences your business has. Brand Fans typically create up to 8 times their own lifetime value to your brand/business through recommendation.

Let’s be clear about this. Individually they will have their own lifetime value to your business. This is their worth in commercial terms.

Think about this for a moment. What’s the typical transaction value for a high value customer in your business? Make a mental note.
For how long does your business typically retain these types of high value customers/clients/audiences? What’s the frequency of purchase over the entire time that they are likely to continue buying from your business?

Considering all this, what’s the typical lifetime value [sales and gross profit] of a high value customer/client/audience? Make a mental note.

Now multiply that number by 8. This is the commercial value [sales / profit] that a Brand Fan can create for your business. It’s created by the power of recommendation. Introducing new customers/clients/audiences to your brand / business.

Brand Fans market your business for you. Word-of-mouth / word-of-web is many times more credible and powerful than any marketing activity your business can produce and activate.

Actions to consider

1. You need to know more about your Brand Fans. [That’s ‘know’ not ‘guess’.]

Why? So that they and people like them, who don’t know about your brand and what you do, can start to become the focus and enablers to take your business to the next level.
Who are they?
Why have they become your Brand Fans?
What proportion of your customers are Brand Fans, strongly recommending your business to others? What was that percentage last week, last month, last year? How has it changed over time and why? What are the drivers of change?
Then ask all the same questions for customers/clients/audiences who are doing the opposite, recommending that others don’t buy from you. These people are damaging your business and need to be converted into Brand Fans before more business is lost and poor reputation spread.

2.  If your business is not measuring, recording and acting upon this type of information, it needs to do so very soon. Seriously consider its value. This type of measurement becomes a powerful management tool, enabling issues to be fixed and more Brand Fans created.
Only two questions need to be asked at various points along the customer journey. If you’d like to learn more about how to do this in ways which are most appropriate to your business and customers, just make contact with Chris Burton at Brand Success – hello@brand-success.co.uk  / Brand.Success on SKYPE / +44 1306 400077.

3. Start creating a deeper understanding of your Brand Fans – the different types of customers who love what your business does for them.

We’ll dive more into the detail of what you need to know about them in the next issue of Next Level tips and focus points.
In the meantime, try and picture a few examples of real customers who could be Brand Fans of yours. What makes them similar to each other? How are they different? Think in terms of what their needs are and how your brand is the right solution for them. Think about their attitudes to the commercial world your brand operates in and their behaviours before, during and after they buy. For example; do they constant reminding before buying, leave it to the last minute, buy only online or with a face-to-face interaction? Why?

The critically important foundation for taking your business to the next level is to deeply understand the different groups of customers/clients/audiences that your brand/business needs to connect strongly with and then delight with every interaction with them.

This will be the focus of the next issue. More tips and focus points next month.

If you’d like to discuss this for your business before then, just make contact with Chris Burton.

About the author

Chris Burton has been creating, revitalising and repositioning brands for more than 20 years. Some you might recognise – Andrex, Glade, Toilet Duck, Mr Muscle, Early Learning Centre, Upper Crust. Others, you won’t recognise, as they are little gems, working hard for small and large businesses alike.

Chris founded and runs his own brand consultancy – Brand Success – from a base in Surrey, UK.

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