Love the Product, but Hate the Brand
This week's topic: Products vs Brands.
Brands and products are not the same thing, making it quite possible to love one and not the other. Most of us have been there at least once in our lives, where we love a product, but can't stand dealing with the brand, or more importantly how they deal with us. Instead of sharing other people's posts, this week I'm sharing my thoughts on this conundrum. Since my past experiences with, and how I feel about a brand largely influences the products I choose buy, it really is a conundrum for me.
Brands are like people, in that, we look for the same qualities in brands as we do in people; integrity, honesty, loyalty.
We are drawn to individuals (and brands) who possess those qualities and are genuine, caring and give back to the communities they're in. We view brands as people, because ultimately it's the people behind the brands that set the tone, culture, priorities and messaging for those brands.
I have a theory that at least 50% of all buyer's remorse cases are misdiagnosed, and are in actuality cases of love the product, hate the brand.No matter how much I love a product, I almost always regret a purchase where the buying experience or the brand interaction has been indifferent or negative. I can never have a truly positive user experience with that product because I feel resentment each time I use it, and am reminded of that negative brand experience. And there in lies the conundrum. So my question to you is what do you do when you love the product but hate the brand's tone, engagement, service (or lack there of), environmental or human rights policies, or whatever is important to your purchasing experience? Do you even care? Is price the only deciding factor for you?
Even if price is a factor, and lets face it price is always a factor for most of us, is it the only factor or deciding factor?Personally price is only part of the equation, and if I can purchase a similar or comparable product at a comparable price from a brand I like, I do. There are a short list of brands I simply refuse to purchase, no matter the price, and would rather pay more than deal with them. My "no-buy, no way, no how" list is very short, but some have been on that list for 15 years and after all this time I still feel the same way. Note to Brands: Even if you're not on the "no-buy" list your indifference begets my indifference and impacts your bottom line. Just as I'm willing to drive further and pay more to avoid the brands I don't like, I am equally willing to do so to buy from the brands I do like.
If I feel good about my experience I regularly take the time to share that on social media or in person with friends and family. Rarely do I share negative experiences or about brands I don't like on social media, but I also make a point not to engage with them or share their content. And while I may not share on social media I do share both good and bad experiences with friends and family. You know how it goes: I tell two friends, and they tell two friends and so on...
Not liking a brand is almost never about a single bad experience, but instead a feeling that develops over time.I'm not necessarily angry with a brand, I just don't like them, and they don't know that "average joe me" feels that way because they don't care. In my experience there are two main reasons for not liking a brand: bad service, or attitude (either, online, phone or on social media). If a brand has the winning combination of both then they're probably on the "no buy, no way, no how" list, and deservedly so.
- Marketing & Sales 101: I should never feel like I'm in the scene from Pretty Women where I'm not good enough or important enough for your attention or to be acknowledged. Brands shouldn't be snobs! My money and loyalty should be at least as important as the expert or influencer being paid to engage. Based on online engagement and in-store interaction some (not all) of the people working for certain brands are snobs. They believe and convey the message; it is a privilege for me to have the opportunity to spend my hard earned money on their brand. But they are wrong. Just because I don't say it doesn't mean I don't notice and think Big mistake. Big. Huge. I have to go shopping now ... and buy your competitors products.
I can't be the only one who has felt this way, and as a result doesn't buy from a brand.There must be me x 1000's, which adds up to substantial loss of potential free advertising, profit and sales. You know nothing about me, and never took the time to find out. It's a privilege for a brand to have even a minute of my precious time and money. Just as it's a privilege for me to have even one minute of my readers precious time. In the end brands are responsible for who they hire and the messages they sent. Sometimes what looks good on paper does not translate into real life experience. You may not be able to put into words what it is about a person or a brand that you like, but you know it when you see it. Loyalty, integrity, and honesty are always in style, and there are plenty of brands out there with these qualities that I can deal with.
What is important in a brand for you, and what is a deal breaker?
Yep, just me Cathy thinking out loud about what I think is worth the read.
Note: I have not been compensated in anyway for this post. All opinions are my own, and the purpose of this post is merely to share with my readers posts and articles I find interesting.