14 August

How to make your brand likeable and increase your sales

What factors can you focus on to create a likeable brand? This depends on where your company is at, the kind of brand you have and what else is happening in your sector. Which of the following four types of likeability is the one that would most suit your brand and product?

1. Instant likeability

You know how some people are instantly likeable? You only have to meet them for the first time, and you’re telling them everything about yourself. These people have an ‘X-factor’ for likeability, and they’ve most probably developed it unconsciously.

Some companies have this too – they’re intensely likeable in an instinctive way. Maybe they simply use a choice word here and there on their website, or a piece of imagery that strikes a chord with their audience. Sometimes the effect is all the more charming because not much thought seems to have gone into it. But as these businesses grow they need to find a way of scaling their likeability by becoming more deliberate about it, much like a startup has to consciously manufacture a culture as it expands. They have to manage their likeability in all aspects of their companies: their brand image, their product design, their people and their content – without losing the magic along the way.

2. Earned likeability

This is when your brand becomes likeable over time through the effort you put into it. Your company could have a dogmatic adherence to the truth no matter how unpopular it may be. You could show an over-commitment to a cause, or challenge the status quo, revealing a passion for what you believe in above all else, like The Body Shop did.

Or, you could demonstrate an amazing level of helpfulness to people, leading them to feel reciprocity towards your brand. This is especially effective if it’s both personalised (directly relevant to your audience) and unexpected. A good example is from car-hire company, Avis, and its campaign, ‘We try harder’.

3. Compassionate likeability

When you have a reputation as a compassionate brand, it means that people see you as a company that puts its own interests second and the wider good first. You view the world through a larger prism than pure profit, gearing your efforts towards making a positive difference through the enactment of your overarching purpose. This is a likeable position to be in because it generates trust; a company that goes out of its way to help others is one that can also be relied on to treat its customers well. It has a warm and caring glow around it.

Another way to look at this is to imagine that you bump into the CEO of a company that you want to do business with and have a minute to impress them. Do you reel off your usual elevator pitch, full of buzzwords and ‘benefits’? Or do you offer them something of value? Something that would be meaningful to them as a person, such as the opportunity for one of their teenage children to do an internship in your business? If it’s the latter, you’ve hit on a home truth. It’s emotionally intelligent to apply your brand in a way that creates a valued exchange – this is what creates compassionate likeability.

4. Challenger likeability

This is when you achieve likeability by virtue of the fact that you’re the non-conventional player in your industry. Instead of going with the crowd, you’ve identified an unconscious need – something your audience didn’t even know it wanted until it saw it – and jumped into a space that’s badly served by others. You’re challenging the norm.

There’s an inherent likeability involved with being a challenger because people love an underdog, and they can see you’re committed to serving your customers above all else. By doing the right thing rather than following the crowd, and by being a trusted educator who tells your customers what they really need to know, you become a likeable brand.

Original source: https://businessgraduatesassociation.com/