We laughed. We cried. We clapped. We laughed some more. No, it wasn’t a Will Ferrell comedy, but the keynote speaker on the second day of the 2017 Viewpoint Collaborate User Conference. Scott Stratten, brand and unmarketing expert, took to the stage to remind all of us that it’s not just about software, numbers, profits, and timelines. It’s about the brand as a whole, and that the most important part of a brand is the customers.
As Viewpoint CEO Manolis Kotzabasakis reminded us yesterday in his opening presentation, Viewpoint Collaborate isn’t just about business; it’s also about fun. And Stratten brought the fun! An enthusiastic speaker, Stratten wasted no time diving right into the core of brand image. With poignant examples including Ritz-Carlton, Delta Air Lines, and more, he was able to connect with our construction-minded room on a level that was engaging and eye-opening.
Brand image is more than a logo
What it comes down to is no matter how buttoned-up, professional, and profitable your company may be, none of it matters if your consumer image is sub-par. Brand image isn’t just a logo, colors, typography, and consumer-facing messaging. A company’s brand image is directly dependent on its actions and its employees actions.
There’s no such thing as a neutral brand interaction. Every time a consumer, client, partner, or vendor interacts with your company it leaves an impression. In a world where social media and real-time communication is the norm, timing is everything. Chat rooms, review websites such as Yelp or Angie’s List, social media, and word of mouth can make or break a business. It’s one thing to bask in positive reviews, but it’s more important to respond to negative or questionable comments as soon as possible. The worst type of complaints are the ones you don’t hear, because you can’t fix them. Managing employee, client, vendor, and customer expectations is everything, and it’s imperative to do it well and do it right.
Many of us have experienced some sort of customer service save, when a company turned our opinion of it from bad to good. When Stratten was treated poorly by a Delta Air Line employee, his reaction and the company’s response to make it right immediately diffused the interaction. After tweeting his experience and distaste, Delta responded within minutes to remedy the situation. Stratten’s example shows first-hand the power of timing, acceptance, and ownership.
Another story, that of Joshie the Giraffe who was left at a Ritz-Carlton and found his way back to his owner, is another example of a company going above and beyond just because. Ritz-Carlton employees not only found and sent Joshie back home, they included photos of his extended vacation at the property — even lounging by the pool. The luxury hotel, which has a tendency to be thought of as stuffy and ornate, in one instance became relatable and loved by the everyday consumer.
How to be awesome
In your line of work, you most likely won’t be taking plush stuffies into the field, but being awesome should be part of your company’s everyday goal. Sucking is not an option. Your company is only as good as the people you work with, including subcontractors, specialists, and third-party vendors. It’s on you to ensure your company is surrounding itself with the type of organizations it believes in.
This is where Viewpoint comes in. Being able to have a holistic view of your business and each project at every stage keeps any surprises from popping up. Real-time reporting and status updates ensure you can respond and focus on clients, no matter their needs or concerns. Follow-up and transparency is key whether you’re dealing with a client, vendor, or partner.
Viewpoint Collaborate 2017 provides an unmatched opportunity to learn how to get the best ROI from your construction software investment. Our sessions, breakouts, and labs are designed to help you be the best company you can be, and empower your employees and partners to go above and beyond to help shine your already awesome brand image.