If I love Amy’s Ice Cream I’m probably willing to try one of the dozens of new kinds she develops each year. Her strong brand enables her to experiment with a wide array of unusual flavors, reaching out to new audiences while keeping existing customers entertained with fresh new combinations. If Amy decides to venture into low calorie ice creams or health-conscious smoothies, her strong brand makes it more likely that customers will give these things a try. She might even be able to expand into candies or other desserts with greater confidence in the investment. Her strong brand benefits her consumers. They trust her judgement enough to try something that they might otherwise avoid.
When a printer with years of experience in traditional offset printing decides to offer new digital options, customers will be more likely to assume that they’ll receive the same level of professionalism and attention to detail that they’ve had in the past. They can try out new technologies without worrying about binding, finishing, delivery, pricing, customer service or any of the other aspects of a print job — they already have positive experiences with those things, and they only new variable is the digital printing itself.
Even a small purchase carries some risk. Will I like the flavor? How will it look after it's printed? But if I make a purchase from a company that I already trust, I'm far less likely to worry. Building a strong brand alleviates fear and makes it easier for customers to try new things.
Interior design can be a big investment. It can also be extremely difficult to match up a client’s taste with a designer’s aesthetic understanding. Some customers will walk through each detail, picking and choosing what they want with unerring certainty. But many don’t have any idea what they want, and are happy to have the designer guide them. That works just fine when the finished product is loved, but an unhappy “reveal” can waste a lot of money, destroy the client relationship and severely damage the designer’s reputation.
Irene decided that one way to alleviate fear in some potential clients was to give them a taste of the process. She created a program for potential new clients: they choose one small room in the home – usually a guest bathroom or small bedroom – and go through the complete project process from beginning to end, choosing the colors, textures, furniture and accessories. Anxious homeowners learn about Irene’s methods and often clarify their own expectations while spending a small fraction of what they would spend on a kitchen, living room or complete residence. Irene gets a chance to see which customers she enjoys working with and which ones she might be too busy to help in the future.