At first glance, the reputation and image of a business may seem synonymous as the quality of your corporate reputation has a significant impact on how customers see you and whether or not they do business with you. However, image and reputation differ in several ways. How people perceive and feel about your company's products reflects its image. A company's reputation is not built on research, consideration, or knowledge but instead is based on impression and accepted ideas of your brand.
An organisation's reputation includes how its products, services, leadership, and commitment to employees, customers, and the environment are perceived. Although visible branding is important, creating a recognisable trusted brand image goes beyond a cool website, donning state-of-the-art modern corporate workwear and creating an epic online presence.
Let’s take a closer look at just how image impacts the success of an organisation in the current business landscape.
Why Business Image Matters
It is equally important for both new and established organisations to take into account a brand's perception and business image. The reputation and image of a company have a great deal to do with how people perceive and approach your company when it comes to using your services or buying your products.
In the business world, the brand image refers to the way a company's identity is conveyed to consumers, while reputation refers to how staff, customers, and the general public perceive a company's performance. With this in mind, it is important to remember that there are some things that affect a company's success, and revenue, more than others.
Professional Help With Branding
For businesses that are able to afford it, hiring marketing experts to help build their brand is always advisable. It is imperative that companies with the same target audience invest in their brand image in order to compete with startups. However, you don't have to spend money to develop your business image and there is a lot that businesses with more limited resources can do to improve their branding. For example, something as simple a using a professional email address, instead of a Gmail or Hotmail account lets potential customers know that you are a professional entity.
Questions You Should Ask Your Corporate Image Consultant
An image consultant sees your business image not as a separate entity from your reputation but instead, they will view your corporate image in the broader context of your business. When you are dealing with an image consultant, there is a range of questions that you can ask to ensure that you get the best results possible.
Do we have an impact on our reputation by the image we portray? What effect does our corporate image have on our reputation? Can our image be matched with our products? In your opinion, where are the gaps? Which individuals should we engage in? Can we count on reaching our target audience? Does our brand or product influence strangers' opinions? Do you have any suggestions for improving our image? Asking questions like these will help you to continually deliver your brand promise and encourage consumers to remember what your brand stands for.
Impressions Of Your Brand Image
A number of tools can be used in the process of creating your brand image and including these elements in your marketing plan will enable you to not just brand yourself better, but also to expand your reach. For example, while it may seem insignificant, your business cards are often the first point of contact you have with potential customers and should not be overlooked. It's all about presentation when it comes to creating the right impression of your brand image. Despite not converting into sales, a business card is still incredibly valuable as it conveys your brand's promise and helps customers to put trust in your company.
Consistency Is Key To The Success Of Your Business In The Future
It is important to maintain consistency in your branding throughout every interaction to build an easily recognisable and trustworthy brand. Promoting your business with professionalism should always be a priority. Putting forth the right image of your business is critical to your future success and by focusing on the right areas, you can be sure that you continue to make the best possible impression moving forward.