How are you Perceived?
Your corporate image is crucial to your success. And don’t for a moment think that you don’t have one! Your business already has an image. If it’s not one that you’ve crafted and deliberately communicated, it’s one that you’ve accidentally communicated. Either way, people already have an opinion about you.
They may think you are special, or just part of the crowd. You may be perceived as reliable, or perhaps people think you’re best avoided. Their view of you may be accurate or inaccurate. It may be based on experience, or on hearsay and gossip. It may even be based on mistaken identity! But they have an opinion. They already have a mental image of your business.
The important thing for you, in marketing your business, is to take control of your business image and shape it the way you want it.
So the first thing may be for you to find out what your corporate image already is. As we’ve already discussed, you can do this internally and externally. Ask your staff what people think about your business. Then ask your clients what they think: why did they choose you over the competition? What has their experience of your firm been?
Now get to work on shaping your corporate image positively in your favour.
It's always good to run a short informal interview with your client when a job has completed on site. You can do this yourself, or it's often better to get a third party to run the interview for you, either on the phone or in person.
It’s really helpful to get feedback fast. If the client would hesitate to work with you again, you will want to know why and make it right. If feedback is good, pass it on to motivate your staff.
The debrief conversation is good business in itself. It shows you take yourself seriously, that you value your client’s opinion, and want to do a good job. It will inspire confidence in your company.