Lagniappe is a French term that translates to a little something extra. The classic example is the thirteenth pastry in a Baker’s Dozen. The logic behind the Baker’s Dozen is that the extra pastry is a courtesy to whoever has to take the pastries to the rest of the people waiting for them. The extra pastry is a treat to promote customer loyalty. As for the guy responsible for picking up pastries for the group, the thirteenth pastry provides a really good reason to return to that bakery. “A really good reason to return” is the foundation of customer loyalty for an effective seller. And strong customer loyalty leads to strong business results.
The Seller Says
Brand integrity is also important to strong business results because it communicates trust. Before anyone spends money to receive a product, service, or experience, that buyer will have a sense of trust that they will get what they expect. A catchy slogan draws attention. But, product consistency generates ongoing sales. Nike’s slogan, “Just Do It”, is memorable and emotional. However, if the shoes were not stylish and durable their sales would stall. Even when Nike shoes famously tore during televised basketball games a few years ago, their reputation continued to carry them to new sales heights as customers largely overlooked the uncharacteristic embarrassment. What a brand says matters. But, getting the brand to continue its business growth requires much more.
The Seller Delivers
Whether the business ships a functioning thing-a-ma-jig, or provides an unforgettable service experience, its customers value the delivered goods or services. More importantly, the seller delivers the value for which the customer pays. In building a business, sales efforts must grow in the aggregate. Each sale is important. Yet, aggregate sales are more important. Replicating the individual sales efforts pave the way to substantial revenue streams and business success. Consistency in delivery is how the seller sustains the effort. And, consistency starts with the brand. Customers buy from sellers that they believe will provide a solution. Telling a story then making it come true through the solution is the foundation of brand integrity. The solution that the customer wants may be innovation, status, or satisfaction. Nevertheless, customers want that solution badly. Successful businesses deliver it consistently.
Sales results are ultimately what matters. Brand integrity is important to initiate trust ahead of any transaction. Stories are valuable and effective branding is the vehicle to convey the stories. While clever marketing communicates value, honesty prevails. Furthermore, dishonesty will be discovered. Consequently, when sellers perform consistently, the market will know. Still, sellers need to be intentional in getting the positive message out. Commercials, content marketing, digital campaigns are all effective tools. Still, to communicate the brand message effectively, the seller must demonstrate the benefits they provide. Style, dependability, speed, ingenuity, or any other brand traits are on display in every interaction. Successful businesses live their brand. They live their results. They especially live to give a little something extra.
By Glenn W Hunter
Principal of Hunter And Beyond