ask and they give you a number to call, and the call centre doesn’t really know what’s going on and cannotmake even vague promises, you begin to hate the fact that you choose price over service. The Promiseremains true, but the collateral damage caused by a lack of Brand Depth
Brand Breadth is a new idea which encompasses all the non-operational touch-points, and
. This concept of Breadth is crucially important today for brands, because it has a significant
impact on Brand Resilience
.In fact Brand Breadth, in today’s world, will build stronger Resilience
Depth, even though Depth is thecore delivery engagement with the customers. This is because the operational experience, the Depth, canbe very much
– cheap airline versus cheap airline – whereas the customer relationshipcan be greatly enhanced through the Breadth, thus significantly adding to Resilience.Having an investment in Brand Breadth provides a potential platform for not only product and serviceimprovement, value creation, and brand extension, it is an underlying
to be used in times of crisisand operational difficulties as we’ll discuss in Part 3.Brand Experience – Depth and Breadth – contributes to both Brand Resilience and Brand Friction. And infact Depth informs further orthogonal reinforcement of Resilience and Friction via the mechanism of Brand Breadth. In other words, a good or bad customer experience in Depth can be amplified or mitigatedby behaviours and actions in Breadth – which in turn influences loyalty.But here’s an
. Organisations that systemically or repeatably fail in the Depth aspect of Brand Experience almost certainly lack the capability to recover those failings through their actions inBrand Breadth. Why? Because the systemic failings are likely a symptom of a lack of staff clarity andtraining about the brand identity and brand promise, and also of a potential lack of alignment between whatmanagement say they want and what they do e.g. focusing on “cost efficiency and effectiveness” at theexpense of brand values on the front line.Illustration:
The brand promise of Southwest Airlines is “Dedication to the highest quality of Customer Service delivered with a sense of warmth, friendliness, individual pride, and Company Spirit”. Every single employee of the company is aligned with this brand promise,and SWA is renown for a staff morale is exceptionally high. As a result they deliver strong Brand Depth and they have a firm basis for a social strategy expanding their Brand Breadth,and every likelihood of it succeeding. Most other airlines do not have this foundation.
The bottom line? Building a social strategy to expand Brand Breadth is no panacea for an organisationwhich is dysfunctional in delivering Brand Depth.It’s commonly observed that even after repeated bad experiences – a broken Promise, or lack of BrandDepth – that some customers are
than others. It can also depend on the industry. This is BrandFriction.
Brand Friction is best illustrated by the airline Frequent Flyer programs – a
by American Airlines in 1981, universally copied, to make customers think twice before switching airlines.