Let’s now go deeper into the difference between established brands and new brands. So we’re talking about how can you differentiate? How can you stand apart from the competition?
One of those ways is around legacy or tenure or experience. At one end of the spectrum, you could have these established brands, long time brands, or heritage brands. They’ve been around since the dawn of time. Your Coca-Cola’s, your Sony’s for example.
On the other side of the spectrum, you could have your new brands; more fun, innovative, kind of the new kids on the block. Whether it’s your social media brands, or your online brands. Whether it’s Apple, Samsung, Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. You know, a lot of technology brands.
What we need to do, or what you need to do as a sales professional is be really clear about which side you are on. Are you one of those heritage established brands or are you one of those newer brands? So let’s talk a little bit about the advantages and, perhaps, disadvantages of both sides.
When you look at the heritage brands, one of the great things about them is that they’ve been around. So, for example, when I first got started in sales, one of my first jobs was in financial services. Even though I was a newbie, I was new to the sales profession, the great thing was that I was working for a company that was the oldest and largest provider of registered education savings plans in our market. What do that mean?
Even though I personally lack the experience, I was representing a company that was a legacy brand, a heritage brand. They were well-established, trusted, and credible. That’s the beautiful thing about that.
So when I was selling to customers, I could easily compare us with competitors by saying, “Okay, their return on investment might be a little bit better, but there’s no guarantee you’ll get that money back because they actually haven’t been around long enough to start paying out to contributors. Whereas us, on the other hand, we have been doing this for over 60 years so we have a lot of experience working with customers like you.” That really, really helped in my sales with customers. That credibility, that trust.
Maybe you’re here watching this video going “Ah, okay. I’m new and my company’s new. We’re a startup. So how do we win at this positioning game?” Here’s some great news. You can go on the opposite side of the spectrum and go hard and strong and position yourself as a new brand. We’re fresh, we’re young, we’re innovative, we’re creative, we’re playful, we’re cutting edge. That is something that really appeals to a lot of customers. And this is really great with tech companies as well.
So, for example, there are a lot of companies out there that have been around for a long time — those heritage brands — but they’re not changing with the times. They’re not meeting the needs of customers. Maybe you represent a brand that’s young, fresh, innovative, cutting edge that can meet the needs of changing customers. That’s how you position yourself.
“We’re not your grandfather’s brand. We’re going after the next generation, technologically savvy customers.” Maybe that’s how you position yourself.
One interesting scenario — When we look at Apple, for example, they have been around for quite a while now. When they first came on the market, their tagline was “Think different.” And they were really trying to position themselves as the new kid on the block versus IBM as the established player.
Well, times have changed. Apple is now moving towards that legacy brand, that established brand and there are a lot of newcomers, chomping at the bit. Trying to position themselves as the hottest, newest thing.
So, what are you? An established brand or a cutting edge brand? There’s no wrong answer but you’ve got to pick a side. On to the next video.