Are you willing to ask for it?

[Cache – #106]

Having taken my first course in branding 14 years ago, my takeaway from it has been reduced, by the passage of time, to this: the point of branding is to charge more money for your organization, product or service than you would otherwise be able to.

There are many other reasons to be sure:

  • to express the essence of who you are and what you’re selling
  • to be different than competitors
  • to articulate and then act in accordance with your culture
  • to make your company more valuable to suitors
  • to attract and retain the best employees, customers, suppliers, investors, volunteers, media attention, etc.
  • through all of the above, make a difference in the world

…and many more.  But the point about charging more is still as salient as can be.  And on this score, the real question is not “How much are my customers willing to pay for the value I offer?”, but instead this:  “Am I willing to ask my customers to pay for every cent of that value?”

Or put even more accurately, “Do I have the courage to ask my customers to pay what I know my brand to be worth?”

If you’re out there building your brand by following the three tools and three rules of branding, there is no question that your brand is worth more than it used to be.

The tools:

  1. Have a clear position
  2. Be remark-able, i.e. worthy of word-of-mouth
  3. Deliver great experiences

The rules:

  1. Be consistent
  2. Manage your brand actively
  3. It takes time to build a brand – it is a process, not an event

And here is a wonderful fact:  asking for what you’re worth makes you worth even more, because the perception that you have a strong brand (evidenced by the fact that you have healthy prices) makes your brand stronger.

So ultimately you can boil down the question to this:  “Am I willing to ask for it?”


In case you missed it:  My BNN interview re. Lance Armstrong’s brand (starts at the 3:30 mark, after the ad).

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