“Brand-Standing” or Brand-Critical? Getting the balance right.
This piece in Autocar raises some interesting points that have long circulated. We can all recall examples of entering a brand’s new “Retail Concept” and being wowed with the zestiness of the lemons or the dazzling whiteness of the travertine marble floors but customer cynicism exists about such facilities and there’s an understandable belief that ultimately it is they, who will be footing the bill.
It’s always felt like a bit of an arms-race driven at a distance by brand guardians situated in remote supra-national European or regional hubs, rather than by the local NSCs. Indeed in our experience any brand-development is usually greeted as a burden not a blessing for the brands and their retailers in markets that have to implement the roll-out. It soaks up time, money and effort that could be better utilised elsewhere, most notably on genuine customer service that will deliver quantifiable returns in ROI and Customer Satisfaction. This for us is the nub of the matter – does “Brand-standing” like this deliver where it matters most – for the customer?