The Customer Experience Podcast
The Customer Experience Podcast

Episode · 2 years ago

12. Branding Through Customer Experience Like Apple w/ David Brier

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Like it or not, your customer’s experience is your brand.

How do you make your branding win in the long term?


To find the answers, we spoke with David Brier, Chief Gravity Defyer at DBD International, a branding consultancy and agency. He's the author of Brand Intervention: 33 Steps to Transform the Brand You Have into the Brand You Need.

Branding is the art of defrentiation.If you fail to defrentiate, you aren't branding you're, making you're listening to the customerexperience podcast a podcast dedicated to helping today's growing businesses,restore a personal human touch throughout the customer life cycle, getready to hear how sales marketing and customer success experts surprise anddelight and never lose sign of their customers. Humanity here is your hostEefan Baute. Thank you. So much for clicking play onthis episode of the Customer Experience Podcast. My name is Ethan Bute and I'mso excited to have David Briar with me today. David welcome to the show,absolutely man. Thank you so much you're having me David is the chiefgravity defier at dbd International. He runs a branding consultancy, an agencyhe's the author of brand intervention. Thirty three steps to transform thebrand you have into the brand you need, and this line is one really resonatedwith me: helping brans defy gravity and achieve brand elevation. So I normallystart with a definition question, but I want to start with this. Instead, inthis model of helping brands defy gravity, what is gravity in this case?What is the constant force, that is, that a company or a brand or a team hasto fight against a Loti, say: There's two sides to that: one is the factor ofthe ever increasing amount of noise out there and how do you not add to it, butactually still be a singular voice, that's meaningful amongst all thatnoise and the other flip side of that is that that you as a brand as anorganization that what happens is, is that you do not fall into the sort of brand hell of using cliches and thatwill suck the life out of a brand faster than a room full of politicians.That is great.

I knew I get a good answer on that anda healtful one to those are both great insights to find for me, customerexperience when I say customer experience o you, what does that mean?What are some of those characteristics? What comes to mind on that term? Well,customer experience Wellell. Let's, let's look at this. Well, let me let mestep back and crush one myth right out of the gate. Wat I'm about to talk about equallyapplies to be to be as well as B to CE. There is this myth that ohell do youbrand businesses or do you brand e business, centric businesses orcustomer centric businesses, and I'm like excuse me, there's actually aperson at the end of each of those decision points one is making adecision for an organization on's, making a decision for either theirfamily or theirselves or whatever, like that. Se have slightly differentcriteria, but you're still dealing with having to be meaningful, an impact operson. So in terms of customer experience, one of the big big potholesand customer experience is doing what is predictable. I actually say thatmeeting expectations is a death sentence and what I mean by that is anyorganization that merely does what is expected of them. Their days are number right, they're, not giving you or meanymore than what we expected there. Not You know whether it's and and thatcould be anything it could be. The speed with which you respond. If you'reoffering texh support, it could be people answering the phone instead ofmachines, it could be like, for example, I mean I ean remember when you ow whatit I meante look at Apple, an apple introduced, the genius bar it broughtthe biggest sore point for technology was text part that was the most dreadedthing that anybody I ever had to do get on with some Bozo or they wait forreally long time or they would even try and be upsold to Che. Oh, that's goingo Costue, I mean any one of those. It...

...was always a sore eye and so apple in abrilliant move. Moves the genius bar into the stores themselves. You, as aconsumer, have experience. You have a an above above way, exceedingexpectations, you're also dealing with the person right there who can look atit with you and the cal culture of apple being not like, for example, itwouldn't have worked in the culture of best by because best, by isn't knownfor being a people. centric culture right, they're, moving crap they've gotinventory. They've got four thousand different versions of laptops. theyavegot four thousand different speakers. They got. Fourth, that you know it'slike a Gazillian at's, just invatory they're shoveling crap. So when I lookat customer experience, I look at what's the it's a very simple exercise,what's the bench mark for what is expected? What's the norm becomes GISIP? What is the norm if the norm is Xyz? Well, how? How can you do a betterXYZ or how could you do qrst Uvwxyd, because you know what five percent tenpercent fifteen percent more can make an enormous difference for the customerand be a very slight investment on the part of an organization as far as it'sbran te yeah, that could be the pimpiting point that makes thedifference in terms of customer experience. Foiou with me, that'sawesome. I also that the way O described the genius bar makes me seeit differently. The thing that I always appreciated about is got that kind ofexit through the gift shop thing going on where we have to go all the way past.All the gorgeous product displays to get there and I get on the way back out.So you're always like you know it is genius truly to create such a gorgeousspace to tackle the biggest problem in a in a truly human and helpful way, andthen you know have that interaction with the product display as well. WhenI hear what you just offered, which is great, what is the bench mark? How do Iexceed it? Is there any risk in you...

...have to continue to raise expectationsfor people who are doing business with you over time, and what does that looklike? Is it? Is that really it like? You just need to be better today thanyou were yesterday, and you have to keep doing that, because every day is anew day and you got to like I operate out of a basis of fearunderstand, and so I think like. Okay, do I have to keep raising the stakesand a yeah okay, Ya talk about Thatyou know I can guarantee you look at any.You grab any autobiography of any major achiever in the world, whether you'retalking Michael Jordan, your Talkin, Mohammedali or you're talking about anyartist or any business leader or entrepreneur. Today's innovation, what ultimately happens it becomestomorrow's norm? You know you look at I mean we now we will now you and I willfind things on the drive through menus on McDonald's and Burger King andWendy's today that ten years ago, like no freaking way are you kidding, youknow unusual, more exotic, different things, a little. You know whether theyyou know what stuff in their salads that's different or seasonings, ordifferent taste profiles that ten years ago there was there would have laughyou out of their corporate headquarters now today their mainstream. So if one has to really accept the factthat evolution, constant evolution is the normal way todo business, it's not the exception, it has to become the rule. If you're goingto continue to lead a culture of innovation needs to be your norm andand complacency is the work of the dark Lord from Harry Potter orwherever you want to pick Wey, whatever darklay right, yeah, astes character,you've ever encountered on a screen exactly it's like it's like the Zombiapocalypse. If you're looking at you go, wait a second because complacency islike hey. We've made it- and I cover...

...this in the book, which you know Italkd about the fact that you know the what the difference between losers andreal winners or, let's say short term winners versus long term winers. Let'sput it in that context. The longterm winners realize that every time theyreach a milestone, that's a new start. Basically, there is no finish line andwhereas the short term winners they'll be like oh good, we madat his mouse, sowe can now coast. We can chill for a while. We can kick our feet up andthat's not true. It's just not true. You need to always raise the bar. Youneed to always go okay, I mean and great example I mean I just use thisbecause I know a lot about a m, not not because I'm like a Steve Jobs Junkie,but I do it. I admire what he did so much. I remember reading from his Botautoography that when they were done with the first I had before was everreleased. He was already saying good. What's a what's number two versiongoing to look like: What's number three verson even before he was alreadyalready ready to outcreate sort of literally make his own product lineobsolete, he was already planning on its ownopsolescence, based on his own innovation, not waiting for somebodyelse to come along. So that's the that's the viewpoint of the true winnerin today's in today's business mol so good. I love the idea of, and thisapplies especially for people that are listening in a software business. Youknow it's. You know with this ipad thing. It's hardware which you know youhave to have a formal release date, but you know with with software, eventhough ou can kind of correct it on the fly, you still have major releases, butknowing okay. In order to make this deadline, we cut some corners ord. Wemade some compromises, or we said we'll do this later, but having that planbaked into the whole thing from the Getgo to create this just constantmovement. For I love it talk now about brand or branding. How do you define itand what is its relationship to customer experience? Okay, so little little back story just togive a context here about five years...

...ago I started looking at I startedlooking at branding from the standpoint of how do I, how do I simplify thisbecause, all of a sudden, I was starting to see so many more peopleentering into be branding space and people calling themselves brandingexperts and all these kind of stuff, an Battah Blah Blah. AH, BAE was grafticgraphic design background or something yeah h. They have a graphic designbackground or they may or they may have dabbled in social media channels, andit's like well, I'm a brand extpit, because I can get friends I can getthem. I balls what does make you a branding expert that makes you a goodperson to gete attention to the brands thit's one part, but that's notthewhole story, so it happened was was I went to Amazon one day and I typed inbranding underbooks, and I pressed search just to see how many books andat the time and again tis about six five six years ago, there's ove sixthousand three hundred books blew my mind. Then there was then, then then Ithink most facently, I checked within the past few months. It's up to eightthousand three hundred or something like that. Now I think I did the mathand if I did it right, if you were to read each and every one of those booksone per day, it would take iu twenty two years. Okay, now the thing that'samazing about that is. This is a specific tool and the one thing that Iknow I've been doing this long enough that I know when there's a lot ofdifferent viewpoints about one thing: a lot of conflicting viewpoints, there'salways something central and fundamental that has not been wellestablished. There's like a missing fundamental point. If there's that manyviewpoints that many experts that many philosophies and approaches and systemsand things and this and that the other, so I looked at all this- I looked atall this. I looked all this and then I actually realized it actually is onething, because I've been using this successfully for clients. I've alsobeen using it in my own, my own philanthropic activities and raisingmillions of dollars for things that I care about, and so I'm like what am Idoing and what's working here and it came down instead of all like of theseeight thousand plus books, it came down...

...to a four word definition and that forrdefinition is the art of defrentiation branding is the art of defrentiation.If you fail to defrentiate you aren't branding you're making you might bemaking something prettier, you might be making something sound cooler, youmight be rewriting its copy, you might be getting it more distribution points onsocial channels and other channels, but if you are not, if it the bedrock ofeach of those activities, you are not differentiating, then you are notbranding and the reason that that's important is because you- and I, if I were to say, say: okay, then here's a deal. I havetwo bottles of water here I got sick one. Here's a sixteen ounce brand, asixtee ounce Brandba, and neither of these manufactors have done anything todefrentshape, one from the other. I just say which one I, which one do youwant, which one do you want to buy and you're like you, look at them. You,like your trying to you, look at the label you're, looking inside you seeingif there's any difference in color or something you can't tell any difference.The first things Ho I going to commit in mouth is like Wellwhich unes cheaper.Now, it's not because you're cheap, but it's because you and I we demanddifference. We demand tha point of difference and if a Manunufactur, if acompany, whether they're offeing a service or product, fails to deliverdifferentiation, the consumer will do it on your baff. That's why that's whyyou get these braces to the bottom undercutting undercutting undercuttingon price. The reason that that can happen is because those categories werethat's happening. They have failed to defrentiate and add value. Defrentiatein this, in this context, is synonymous with value, but it is clearlydefrenstriation in the in your eyes and in my eyes like I can see. That'stotally, not like anything. I've seen before you look at the best product,lauches thats nout, like any I've seen before you look at the best, whateverwhether they are anything sneakers cars, clothing, building equipment. Whateveryou know it's just you know, I mean...

...even with what you got going on h withBomba. I someone I ended up. You know I was talking to somebody and I was likewow. I saw this thing. I was like an I clicked on it. I'm like I want to trackcheck track down. who was this person that had this little animated gift? Inmy thing, because I noticed what I did, I see this person on this little loopand it's whatever it is the three second or four second animated gift,and I'm going you know what what did I do? I clicked play I needed to hearwhat they were saying. I was compelled it was it didn't fall into. I don'thave time to look at that email right now. I was immediately compelledinstantaneously and I'm a consistent observer of what are those things thattrigger me into action, rather than that's just adding to the noise. I I'llget to that later and then I end up with way too many things I get to later:Yeah gravity youed to come to gravity, rather your sender succumes, to gravityyeah, so I loall Y offor there this and that's why. I just want to reiteratethis idea that there is no finish line and you have to constantly beinnovating, because if you're innovative, indifferent, I'm tyingthisto differentiation, you know eight years ago, ten years ago, but now thenorm has come to meet you because you've been complacent, you need toreinvent, hence the brand intervention. One of the one of the great lessons inthere is about seeing and being seen. Can you talk about that? Because Ithink you know what a lot of people? Not only will they confuse brandingwith advertising, let's say or even marketing in general, when we know thatbrand is even more broad and fundamental than any of thoseactivities. You know, I think, a lot of people think that it's about you knowhow do we look to the public, but can you talk about this relationshipbetween helping other people see versus seeking to be seeing yourself oallytotally? I'm always of the mindset for myself and for my client is very, veryimportant distinction. I'm always like.

How do I empower my clients and how doI get my clients to empower their clients or customers? The greatestbrands empower you and me if you and I feel bigger, bolder frer,more liberated, more empowered at the at the end of an interaction with abrand than we did at the beginning, rather than okay, I complete atransaction se. That's Ho! THAT'S NOT ANYTHING! I mean even something istrivial. What do you I mean- and I know Amazona has been like on everyone'schopping. Blick t lately, they've been kind of like E on s, lie Luf to kind ofkick them o these days, but let's take, for example, even Amis Don. What doesTamis Don do you know they have they give me the user? They give me more ofmy time because I could go in and out of there with the one click and I couldbe out of there in about a minute and a half okay. That made me more potent. I didn't haveto speak to somebody on the phone. I didn't have to spend twenty minutes,thirty minutes or whatever I it gave me back twenty eih minutes. That's not!Now! That's not a a big thing that it's not like a technological revolutionwherre I have a computer and all of a sudden I can do things that I couldn'tdo before or Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah, but that's an example, and so the thingis is when brands are looking at the equationof things. Yes, you need to get eyeballs, but when you're getting thoseeyeballs don't become so obsessed and fixated onto the issue of how do we get more ibles? How do we getmore abots? How do we t you got to be in the you got to provide value beforeyou can seek to get value back so how the real question becomes? How do wehelp other? How do we help empower others instead of how do we getempowered? How do we empower ous? How do we add so much to our customers? How do we give them so much more andagain it alines. So we talked about earlier. We talked about meetingexpectations is a dheath sentence. If I'm going to give you the same asanyone in my competitors could give you,...

...why are you going to come back to me? Why is that? Why is this relationshipthat we have going to be considered valuable to you? Why are you Goinna beloyal to me? You have no indyou have no incentive to do that, but if every timeI make sure that I give you s some additional tools, I mean I will taketwenty minutes in a conversation with a clientnd I'll say by the way. I justsaid something. I really want you to understand the meaning of what I'vesaid and how you can use this. Here's why this is important. I never assumethat they know why. I'm saying what I'm saying so I take. I take those tenfifteen twenty minutes and I say I want to explain this to you, because it'svinally important, if you do not understand why you will not be able tomake use of it and that's one of the rules that I basically appliedthroughout my career, which is that rules enable you to follow, butknowledge enables you to lead. I never want a client to just have a set ofrules that they can now follow. Okay, when we advertise here. This is whatthe brand pieces we should use and we do this. We should just that's blindlybeing a robot. I want them to understand. Why are you doing that you?You must understand the role of defrentiation. You must understand whywe'v Chosen The voice that we've chosen, you must remain attentive. You mustrealize when you've achieved one milestone, that's simply a milestone.That's yesterday's news! ANC'e, tomorrow's news. It's going to keep usas relevant tomorrow as we sought to be yesterday, and so all of these thingsreally start to come together and they just make an amazingly powerful recipe,that's great, so Wen in the recipe you know we talked. I think it was beforewe hit record about vision, statements and mission statements and things. Whatare these executables like? What? What are the you know when you engage withsomeone? You know what is what is one of the leave behinds in addition tothis knowledge in this philosophy, in this mindset, that's so valuable to beoperating from as a contributor in a business enterprise. Do you leave themwith some, not again hat rules, but you...

...know some some documentation, somefilters to evaluate opportunities on to move forward like what I just tangibly.What's a what is a practical leaf behind that as an exercise to go with the knowledgetotally so well, there's there's a few there's a few different things in and to be just to give you a little sneakpeak a little pull back on the curtain, I'm actually putting together an actualcourse that goes. It really dives quite deeply into this, but to give you anidea, e there's, there are four corephases and fifteen steps that gointo this. They go into this whole evolution. Some of the things arereally reminding them, and sometimes I have to. I have to beat up my clients verbally to basically saywhat are you doing where the hell was that in the brand voice that weestablished, you fell back into your old habits and those a old habitsdidn't they're not going to take it to tomorrow. Okay, they're, not they're,not your GPS, for where you're going and so a a perfect caste. In Point, oneof my one of my clients out of Napa Valley. It was just amazing because they saw anine hundred percent growth in twenty four months after the rebrand that wedid for them. Maybe about six months into it. Theowner, Sande caughtd me up. She Goes David. We have. We have a newsalesperson that we want to introduce that we want to actually take on, butthey're, not quite comfortable with the brand. With the brand title. The titleof that you came up with us because I created titles that were part of thebrand culture like, for example, because they produce this amazing stuff,nap, a valley so delicious. These amazing shortbread cookies thatnd. Theywere like melting, your mouth ridiculous. They were a freaking drug.Okay, you needed, you definitely needed like someone to be your supplier, youneed it's a different kind of intervention. It was a different kindof interection, but what happened was so she went from on her car going fromfounder to chief and diligence officer,...

...okay, that was her new title, so it hadthe spirit of the brand it had the fun of the brand. The Bran was a fun brandwho was not as Seros brand, and so that was you know. Some brands are a littlemore serious and some brads are not. But that's one thing it's like you know:People Do Respond, the fun you'll notice, people actually do respond toenergy, and so it happens is the name of the sales people that I have thetitle that come up with. I said I neev your sales personall going to be calledsenior taste, tentilizers aright and this person now so this new person'scoming and Sayg. This person is not quite comfortable David with thissenior taste temdizer. Can you can you dilute it a little bit? I said Sondrireally dont recommend thus she's like no. Please can you just humor me, so Icame up with something that was definitely deluted. There was noquestion and I didn't like it and I said, look if you feel you have to here.You are but whatever, and so the funny thing is. Here's just the lesson inpoint to answer your question. This person comes in the new title is givento her. This diluted, one. This person is there for a day at the end of a ninehour shift as in this new sales capacity, the person, the culture wastoo much for her and she quit and so, and the and Saner the owner Walme of Antol. What a tell from the beginning exactly she goes. I learnedmy lesson. She goes. You told me it was off brand to do that. I said yes, I didand Shega, and I said why would you compromise your brand to satisfy her ifshe's avealready having problems with that that s already, it should be a redfig, say: There's the door wher, we don't have to do business together andthat and she goes I will never ever go off brand again and that woal that'sjust one examt one little baby example. So, good, Hey! I could go an hour ortwo hours easily Becaus, I'm sure you have so many more great takeaways andstories, but I'm going to wrap this with the way I always like to wrap it,because I always get such great answers we're all about relationships here onthe show and at Bombam, and so I want...

...to give you a chance to thank ormention someone who's had a really positive impact on your life or on yourcareer and to shout out to a brand or a business. That's doing customerexperience well, Wow! Well, okay, so I don't know that I can limit it to oneButi'll, FRI omhen MoD T do please o so the firt Firstone W. So, first of allTed Ruben, if you know I don't know, if you know Tad you, knowtame Yep Ted tetends like a brother from another mother, we're very kinged. Spirits. TedIs Great on relationships and so Ted teds, teds awesome in terms ofrelationships and customer experiencees. All about that Damon John, is afreaking Rockstar. Damon Damon had actually responded to an article that Ihad written for Fast Company and he literally tweeted out the best articleever written on Sharktank ever that's what he tweeted out than I saw that andI was like Holy Shit Right. I was just astonished and then I responded. Heresponded immediately back. I now I didn't know David at the time. So thisis like and and Damon ended up. Writing the forward to my book, Brandodivension and so he's such a great example of someonewho has never lost touch with being vere down to earth and accessible andhe's such a continual shining example of that and that's fabulous and thenalso, I would say I'd say: Lacy Abachi, lacy, Abachi, she's, gonna,she's gonna go no way. You didn't mention me. I said Yeah I did so she'ssomeone that that I came to know on Linktoln and she'sshe's the reallyshe's an awesome, Linkedin, coach, she's, really she's, really cool,really quite bad ass and those are those are three first ones and ofcourse I mean my wife doesn't doesn't help me Tis regard. She gives me greatgreat custmor SERC as a fagulous spouse, wer we're just like we're just anamazing team for that. I have to include because not no at wou becomplete without that in there as well...

...o course not, and then name a companythat that you really respect the way that they're doing brand or customerexperience wow. Let's see here, wels it go to. You obviously have someclients, you love, but give me something something else totally well.Yo Welli'll tell you, you know this is't. This made me wonder your listnersMayran not be aware, but I'll tell you company they're more of a BOOTI company,but I dearly dig a me now. You know I mean obviously ive one knows Sono so onthus has done a real good job in terms ftheir own brand, but there's a companycalled come call peach treat audio and they have an amazing blue tooth. Sowhen we moved to our new offices about three years ago, I was looking for ablue tooth speaker like kickas one and so everyoneas, say Iwas Soos on theSORNS. That I was that and I'm doing my own homework, and this deep blue tookeeps on coming up that people are talking about. They say these guys arelike real audio files, they're really just they're, just amazing they're offthe hook and they've all of these presets when you make it louder lower,and this or an hatter like like, for example, like I didn't even know that,when a sound signal goes across blue tooth that it actually loses soundquality and that unless the speaker, the receiving speaker, compensatesyou'll actually end up with a diminished sound quality. I didn't knowthat so a really good blue to speaker is going to compensate and do it reallyto very high levels, and these guys have been amazing. I've called up theirtech support. They've called me back literally, have called me Bat. I meanon my phone ten minutes later and they've taken twenty minutes. Thirtyminutes, so they when IAVE had the few technical questions and they've beenalways accessible, and so that's a company 's a small Bouti Company. Butit's a company that I completely I love their customer service is amazing andthey're always available and they're just super supportive that that it's areally a lost start. Whatever I think...

...of great customer service, I think ofthese guys. That's a great story, because they've done some educationwith you right like before you engaged with them this whole. You know,lossover, blue tooth is like now. You have something I'm super compelled nowbe just just on that little learning alone. So a great example: Hey Davidthits been so fun if people want to follow up and by the way I encourageyou. I hope you mentioned linked in David. Produces a ton of video and it'sjust as engaging as this conversation was David. Where would you send someoneto follow up with you or learn more about brand intervention? Well, I meanyou DA. You definitely can go to rising above the noisecom orising rising aboue.The NOISECOM is my website, so you can definitely go there. You can subscribeTaes a free book, ithe Lucky Brand Ne Book. You cound download that thatimmediately gets your subscription. I would recommend doing that becausethere's a lot of amazing stuff over the next several months is going to becoming out for those that want to learn definitely hook up with me on length ensubscribe to my Youtube Channel and Brandon devention grab it and here'shere's the tip. Here's the TEP WE' going to tell all of your listeners isthe inside secret. If you get not, if you, when you get your copyof Brandan dovention grab the hard back copy trust me, the actra productionguys are different than the paperback get that one, because when you see mewhether I'm speaking in your city or you come to conference from talking-and you have your hard cover with you, I will sign your hardcuper. You come upto me with a paperback, I'm Goingto, look at you and I'm Goinno, look IUA,say you're juking, right, yeah S, Lat! You didn't read the Amazon reviews.That's another thing! Amazon does well. That's the one tip that I read on theAmazon reviews. You have to get the hard back, because it's just thisgorgeous coffee table experience just really well designed and laid out so great, closer David. Thank you againstso much for spending time with me today. I hope people love the conversationthat they reach. outand connect. You Ando Link Din. Oh absolutely man! Itotally appreciate it great interview and the and keep on keep on doing whatyou do with Bombomyi the Mune. I need...

...to talk about Bomba more anyway,because I I think I coal actually like get you involved with some of myclients. I think that there's I think that there's some real synergy therethat can happen. They'll be awesome. Yeah I mean you are your own bestdifferentiator and that's what we're trying to put forward is you know whoyou are, and so these customer experience touches by video again theACIN crynicity. Yes, 's Great, I'm glad you have that vision, a d we do need tohave that conversation. Absolutely mad perko think so much have a great restof your week. Oh you too, crush it. Byebye, FYY, you're, listening to the customerexperience podcast, no matter your role in delivering value and servingcustomers. You're intrusting, some of your most important and valuablemessages to faceless digital communication. You can do betterrehumonize. The experience by getting face to face through simple personalvideos, learn more and get started. Free at Bombomcom. You've beenlistening to the customer experience podcast to ensure that you never missan episode subscribe to the show in your favorite podcast player or visitvombomcom. Thank you so much for listening until next time.

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