Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Simple and Essential Basics: Trader Joe's

In my upcoming branding book, The Step-by-Step Guide to Build Your Brand, Trader Joe’s is used as an example of a company that knows how to communicate their brand and stay on message. Communicating who you are and what you stand for to customers is essential—as is backing up your claims.

But first things first: Awareness

The list of things Trader Joe’s does right as a company is long, but today I just want to point out one thing they have posted at their points of sale: their brand promise.

No matter which line you go through to check out at my local Trader Joe’s, when you turn to leave you will see one of these signs.

It's not your eyes--the picture is blurry. Sorry.
These simple, low-budget awareness signs serve the dual purpose of educating and and creating a culture both employees and customers can support.

As a brand, never assume that customers know who you are and what you are about. Even loyal customers. And even if you have made sure everyone has heard your brand promise once, don't be afraid to repeat it over and over. Don't be afraid to literally spell it out like Trader Joe's does until your customer knows your brand promise by heart.

Keep your communication simple, but make sure your customer has eyes on what you're all about. Don't make them come up with the words for you. Have the words ready. Make them visible. Then live up to them every day.

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