p>Great Post by that name from Brand Blogger. Raises the question “But what is reputation?”
Glad you asked. Reputation is an expectation, particularly of performance. That’s why brand, or reputation, plays such a large role in decision making. When you see a brand, you think you know what to expect. This saves you a lot of time.
Reputation (Brand) is mostly spread by word of mouth. As I point out in my book, The Secrets of Word-of-Mouth Marketing, a large part of word-of-mouth marketing can be thought of as reputation management. Building a reputation is building a brand, and word of mouth is the key. Who are you going to believe about what to expect about the performance of a product, an ad or your friend, wife, mother, advisor?
I’ve been finding myself gradually moving over to Apple programs, largely because the brand is building quite a reputation with me and with other users. I keep finding things that their programs do that other programs don’t do: great power with simplicity. To be the subject of another post. But suffice it to say here that I just switched almost with blind trust from Entourage (Microsoft’s Outlook for the Mac) to Apple’s Mail, Address Book and Calendar programs, knowing they wouldn’t have the clumsiness that was so annoying with Entourage. I wasn’t disappointed. Simple, elegant, yet much more powerful. Easy to archive. Just also switched from Firefox to Safari to take advantage of its use of Services that Firefox lacked. Again, the brand was enhanced.
I know what to expect with some products (positive and negative). That’s why I’m willing to pay more for certain BRANDS: The Brand or Name has come to represent the expectation of superior performance.
I’ll gladly pay more for Toyota/Lexus, Apple, Nikon, Palm Treo, Go-Daddy, and Monteblanc
Others, like Audi, Microsoft, Earthlink, Verizon and many other brands that I used to love, I now expect inferior performance and service from and wouldn’t even use them at a deep discount.
Others, like Adobe and Continental Airlines, have annoyed me in the past with poor service and/or poor useability, but have turned around dramatically, greatly improving their product interfaces and have done some wonderful services favors for me lately. I find that they literally look different to me, and I go out of my way to use them. (It’s going to be interesting to see what happens with the Continental brand, now that an accountant has taken over as CEO. Prospects don’t look good, judging from the downsizing of their First Class cabins on many planes.)
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