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Retail Rebranding: Experience Is Reality

Friday, November 5th, 2010

This is part 2 of 10 in a series by Craig Carl, SVP Creative Director, The Integer Group.

You run broadcast, print ads, Web banners, and line the streets with billboards. The new logo has been rendered in steel and neon and announced to the world (otherwise known as the stockholders). But when your customer enters the store, the experience is their brand perception. This interaction overrides everything else they know about you. A bad experience with an 18-year-old sales associate can undo millions spent on media. A 10-minute wait to be told, “Uh, we’re out-of-stock on that” is more lethal than Ebola.

And if you’re a Web-based retailer, all you need is a browser that crashes as the customer clicks to open the next page. From frustration to “I can’t deal with this” is also a click away.

The customer experience is paramount to the brand: reference Amazon, Apple, and Nordstrom. The cost of entry is customer service rooted in consistency. McDonald’s delivers the same basic customer experience worldwide. Walmart has the best prices, period. Tiffany’s sells elegance in a pretty blue box. But the end result is a positive experience in the customer’s mind. They have received greater benefit than the time, money, and energy they have given to the retailer.

Next Week, Retail Rebranding: Simplicity Rules

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