Think There’s No Such Thing as Bad Press? Think Again!

Jeff Bezos said, “A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person. You earn reputation by trying to do hard things well.” Amazon’s tries hard to provide an excellent experience for their Customers. By consistently doing what it takes to build an excellent Customer Experience, Amazon enjoys an excellent reputation as a brand and continues to grow in influence and strength.

Other brands do not have the same commitment to consistently delivering a great experience. Inconsistency damages the brand — in as little as five minutes. Warren Buffet said:

“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.”

Frankly, not knowing how your actions affect your reputation can be a disaster in today’s information age.

The Influence of Brand Reputation is Growing

You might think this type of thing doesn’t matter in the long run or that people forget the bad stuff when a new shiny object appears. Maybe you believe that there is no such thing as bad press. To some extent, this is true. However, these days, some headlines hang around longer than you would like, contributing to a reputation for the brand. And they have more influence than you thought, too.

According to their findings in a 2014 Nielsen study, 69% of opinion elite respondents try to learn more about the companies with which they are going to do business. That number was 66% in developed markets and a whopping 76% in emerging markets! And 54% of the Global Opinion Elites say they are increasingly finding out about a company through social media. To see the chart click here.

In another chart, Nielsen shows 54% of Global Opinion Elites in the US and 50% of them in Canada have decided not to do business because of something they learned about the company conducts itself. The next two countries with the highest scores were Germany with 42% and the UK at 41%. To see all the scores, click here.

Reputations Start The Customer Experience

Brand are a lot of things to us. A brand is only a thought in your mind. Brands can reflect your lifestyle or at least the one to which you aspire. Because of this, we have emotional attachments to brands.

We are always trying to define for our clients when the Customer Experience begins. Most of our clients think it starts when the Customer first contacts their company, but this is not the case. Many times your Customer Experience begins with the positive or negative headline or social media post, or, in other words, that brand reputation you create by your actions.

Typically when companies advertise their brands they idealize it, portraying a wonderful experience. It helps create the thought in our mind and builds that emotional attachment we have with it. However, when the Customer has the experience that falls short of the idealized version advertised, it disappoints them. Not a great way to start your experience with them…and in some cases a detriment to your social media reputation.

Building your brand reputation increases in importance according to the Nielsen Study. Having a deliberate design to your reputation is essential to your brand. Not knowing this reputation, or how your actions contribute to it is clearly detrimental to your brand. It starts the Experience because it creates an emotional response to your brand in the mind of the Customer — responses that might result in them contacting you first or not contacting you at all.

What kind of reputation does your brand have?

Colin Shaw is the founder and CEO of Beyond Philosophy, one of the world’s first organizations devoted to customer experience. Colin is an international author of four bestselling books and an engaging keynote speaker.

Follow Colin Shaw on Twitter @ColinShaw_CX


Originally published at beyondphilosophy.com on June 16, 2015.

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