Driving brand management (in the real world)

Imagine a perfect Saturday afternoon. You’re driving down the street when you look in your rearview mirror and discover that, seemingly out of nowhere, a large pickup truck is riding your tail and isn’t letting up.

Your blood boils. You’re already going the speed limit. In fact, you might even be going a few miles per hour over the speed limit. You think, “Why is this idiot so desperate to get past me?” Then you get over to let them pass and, as they speed by, you notice an “Anderson Construction” or “Jackson Bros. Plumbing” logo along the side of the truck. And you think to yourself, “Well I’m never using THOSE jerks in the future.”

Unfortunately, that’s what happened to me last weekend. Odds are you’ve experienced the same at least once or twice in your life.

As a business owner or manager, can you really afford to have drivers leaving such a negative impression of your business on potential customers? Of course not. But, for some reason, it happens more than it ever should as far as I’m concerned.

In an era where business owners are increasingly concerned about the next “viral campaign” or “engaging” on their Facebook page, maybe they should remember to train their employees on reputation management in other important markets like, you know, real life.

I know everybody can have a bad day and people are people, but if you’re going to slap your logo on the side of a truck and let employees drive it around town, remind them that they are no longer Johnny Anonymous. They represent your business now, and, unless your business doesn’t care for new customers, they should probably drive like it.

Think of it this way: A little bit of brand management from the start will do a lot to keep your employees from driving me crazy – and driving me away from your business.

-Mike B.

How about you: have you dealt with similarly frustrating experiences? As a business owner, have you trained your employees to represent your brand with class and professionalism? Let us know your thoughts on either question in the comments below.

Photo c/o nick@. Thanks Nick!