There’s an obsession out there with “branding”…. like it’s a separate and distinct entity, one that is easily controlled and manipulated. The buzz at the ANA was over giving “control” of your brand over to your customers….
In a comment at Hespos.com, James writes in response to Tom’s post on “I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got” :
“Marketers can control their brand to a large extent but it dosn’t start or end with advertising messages…it starts with creating an awesome product or service; standing behind it with great customer service and a commitment to their community and stakeholders. At its best advertising is only a inspired reflection of that. Everything else is BS, whether it comes from an ivory tower or not. So when you note hamburgers at BKs Tom, you are right on the mark. If the meal sucks so does the brand. “
Instead of fussing over the brand, obsess over what’s important and the “branding” will take care of itself.
In stark contrast to the BK branding obsession, is the Cold Stone Creamery’s definition of their “brand”.
At Cold Stone Creamery, we consider ourselves fortunate to be in the “people business.” Who wouldnâ€™t get a thrill out of serving up a Founderâ€™s Favorite or a Cold Stone Creationâ„¢ dreamed up by the wild imagination of an excited 5-year old peering at us through the glass? The fact is, smiling is contagious around here. You might even say weâ€™re really in the “smiles” business.”
Instead of worrying about their brand, BK had better start worrying about the faces serving their product. The last time I frequented a BK drive thru, I can’t say I left with a smile on my face. As a matter of fact:
- BK’s food does not make me smile.
- BK’s service does not make me smile.
- BK’s advertising does not make me smile.
Unfortunately for BK, it doesn’t make my 16 year old son smile either. According to Crain in his article, BK’s bad-boy promotions are built around the creepy king character which is aimed at male teenagers. Sorry BK. It’s not working.
Which probably explains why we haven’t eaten at a BK for quite some time. The last time we did (in late night desperation), the topic of conversation centered around WHY it had been so long since we’d chosen BK for a meal on the go!
Instead of trying to be edgy and develop “social currency” perhaps BK should get back to the drawing board with regards to the menu or, GASP, focus more upon employee training.Â I think it’s called “back to basics.”