Building a powerful brand requires three critical elements.


1- You must have identified your competitive advantage. A well established competitive advantage requires that you really know something about what your customer or prospect wants or needs and few are able to replicate your response to that need.


Starbucks competitive advantage: Mass customization, a cool place to hang out.

Southwest Airlines: Low fares, fun to fly.

Nordstrom's: Over the top customer service worth talking about.


2- Once you have established your competitive advantage it must be translated into a statement of promise you intend to fulfill that your customers and prospects will understand. In other words, you must get the message out that you will fulfill their need or want.


3- You must deliver on the promise. A lot of companies make claims or imply to fulfill a promise but they fall short.


Implementation Step: Consider today what your customers or prospects REALLY need or want in regards to the products or services you offer. Write them down. Be specific.


By the way, if your answer is customer service, that's fine as long as it is truly something worth talking about.