Every organization has a corporate image, whether it wants one or not.
When properly conceptualized, designed and managed, the corporate image (and the resultant corporate brand) will accurately reflect the organization’s commitment to quality, excellence and its relationships with its various constituents: such as current and potential customers, employees and future staff, competitors, partners, governing bodies, and the general public.
As a result, the corporate image is a critical concern for every organization (big or small). As such, the corporate brand deserves the same attention and commitment by senior management as any other vital issue. Management of the corporate image and the corporate brand is a core competency of the leaders of the most successful organizations.
We live in a world of change. In fact, the rate of change today is faster, and affects a larger portion of the earth’s population, than at any other time in history.
Yet, despite all this change, there is still one constant. And that is that marketing excellence and a strong corporate image are firmly linked. You cannot have one without the other. At least not for very long.
Because, at the end of the day…..your competitors can mimic and better your product offer. They can create stronger distribution systems than yours. They can outspend you in advertising and promotions. And, of course, they can always beat you up on price.
But the one thing a competitor cannot mimic or copy is a well-defined corporate personality. As I always advise my clients….if it touches the customer, it’s a marketing issue.™
And nothing, nothing touches your customers more than how he or she perceives your corporate image.
This makes the management of your corporate brand image one of the most potent marketing and management tools available for senior executives to use in ensuring the viable execution of your corporate vision.
Key Point: everything an organization does, and does not do, has an impact on its corporate image.
Taking Action: ask your senior managers to brainstorm and develop a list of the things your organization does that has a positive impact on your corporate image, and a list of the things you do that has (or could have) a negative impact on your corporate image. What can you do to leverage the positive things? What can you do to eliminate the negative ones?