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"WeListen" Blog

Do Your Customers Understand Your Brand Promise?

yourbrandpromise.pngimage credit: drew via flickr cc

91% of modern consumers value “honesty” most when it comes to products and brands. 63% of consumers prefer to spend their money on companies that don’t try and hide their authentic selves. For modern CPG customers, being able to trust a brand’s promise could matter even more than packaging, quality, price, or other factors.

Your brand promise is an extension of your CPG brand. Think of it as the “outcome” of your customer’s purchase. When they buy your coffee drink, they can enjoy hours of focus and energy. This solves their existing problem of staying awake at work. Your promise is something that makes your product and company desirable.

Poor Brand Promises Often Stand Out

When you’re in the market for products and services, you’re shopping with a specific outcome in mind. You want a new car in order to improve your gas efficiency. You want a higher-fiber bread for better nutrition. If you purchase a product that doesn’t live up to it’s claims, you feel a real sense of disappointment. You may even feel like you’ve been cheated.

To avoid inspiring similar frustration or mistrust in customers, organizations should ensure their brand promise is accurate and easy-to-understand. It should align with their customers needs, and be easy to measure against the customer’s experience.

Examples of Exceptional Brand Promises in CPG and Grocery

The best brand promises come from brands who deliver, each and every time. Some powerful and familiar examples from the CPG and grocery industries can include:

  • Coca-Cola: “To inspire moments of optimism and uplift.”
  • Coors Light: “The World’s Most Refreshing Beer”
  • Walmart: “Save money. Live better.”
  • Wegmans: “Consistent low prices."
  • Safeway: “Ingredients for Life.”

These brand promises wouldn’t be nearly as effective if they were untrue. Walmart couldn't get away with promising “the most exclusive luxury.” Similarly, few consumers would believe it if Coca Cola offered “serenity and relaxation.” By understanding why some of the best brand promises are so effective, you can build your own that’s similarly effective.

What Does a Brand Promise Require?

Brand promises aren’t necessarily synonymous with slogans or taglines. They may be one and the same. However, a brand promise ultimately requires an understanding of your target audience's’ needs. To inspire your customers to make a purchase, your brand promise must:

  1. Meet a Need or Want
  2. Be True and Believable
  3. Be Delivered Consistently

What Causes Brand Promise Confusion?

There can be a number of root causes for brand promise confusion. Maybe your promise isn’t even being considered due to poor packaging design. Perhaps your promise reflects who you’d like to be, not who you truly are. In many cases, your promise may not represent your customers’ actual wants and needs. Most importantly, brand promise confusion could be caused by claims that are just too difficult to measure.

Your customers must be able to measure their results against your brand promise. Your promise can’t be overly optimistic, or too vague. To inspire feelings of genuine trust in your buyers, they must be able to noticeably determine that they experienced “better digestion” or “quicker dinner preparation.” With a measurable brand promise, your chances of confusion are significantly lower. When your customers notice that you delivered on your promise, you’ve increased your chances of winning fans and repeat buyers.

If your brand doesn’t understand your brand promise, there’s an incredibly strong chance that your customers don’t, either. By defining a strong and accurate brand promise that can be measured against your customer experience, you can develop a groundwork for building trust and loyalty to last a lifetime.

Click to download our free PKG Book Chapter: "Package Design and the Role of  the Consumer"

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