Branding: Place

I think people have a better feel for Place as a customer than they do as a Business Owner. One of the ways I have seen this is when I watch "Restaurant Impossible". If you have ever watched the show owners call in a gentleman named Robert Irvine. Robert and a team makeover a restaurant in 2 days. About 80% of the time, the decor is one of the big issues. Well, I should back up and say that the "Place" is a big issue. It seems to be a pattern that bad restaurants have cleanliness issues on his show. Not all the time, but most of the time. Now if you walk into a restaurant and it smells bad, what do you think as a customer? Something is wrong. The same is true if you look around and there are filthy carpets, dusty blinds, and general clutter.

This is where Place comes into your Brand. I work out of my home as do many people in my business. The majority of my meetings happen at my client offices. Some of them happen at coffee shops and the rest happen on-line. So, I get to travel to see where people work. And that first impression makes a difference. That is why Marketing folks put such an emphasis on logos, signage, website design and colors.

But the quality of your office space and location of it makes a difference. We have a high end Steakhouse in town that is in a relatively bad neighborhood. I have seen needles in the parking lot while I was walking in. This does not provide a good feeling as someone who is planning to spend $50/head for dinner. I am surprised that this location was chosen and they have stayed there.

So, you can see how this all plays together as part of your brand. What people want and expect is that the location is convenient and safe. They want the style to represent you and yours. If it doesn't then they are disappointed with your company and it hurts your Brand. None of this has to be fancy or overdone. Unless, you are a fancy and overdone brand. Simple can work just fine. It all depends on expectations.

I like to use Hotels as a good way to think about it. Now, you can imagine that a Motel 6 and the Ritz-Carlton are going to be very different. But we can go further and look at others in each of those price classes. The Ritz is known for opulence. But imagine staying at a "W" Hotel. Look them up if you want. They are supposed to be trendy and fashionable. Would you expect the Ritz to be the same? No - Opulent and more Old World. Mahogany and Deep Pile versus Sleek Black and Chrome.

Both can work and have markets. But put the W's music in the Ritz and it would be a big branding mistake!

Jim Sackman Focal Point Business Coaching Change Your Business - Change Your Life! Business Coaching, Sales Training, Web Marketing, Behavioral Assessments, Financial Analysis