SBM 101: Your People Are Your Brand

Small Business Marketing 101Just the other day I took Cassie to Sephora. I wanted to get her a little thank you gift and I knew how excited she was about the new store that had opened up here in Salt Lake. It was a great experience and the store was amazing. The decor was beautiful. They had hundreds and hundreds of make up, fragrance and other products. Not only that, but they had sampling opportunities galore.

Have you been to Sephora before? What did you think about the place?

But there was one element in place that everything hinged on. It is probably the most important element of your branding process – it is your team. Remember all the hard work you put into influencing your brand. Well, your team can literally make or break your branding process. This is because the people you hire and the culture you create in your business is one of the most powerful influences you will ever have on your brand.

Consider a few questions about your people and how they relate to your brand:

  • What happens to your brand if a customer calls your store and is treated rudely?
  • Why do you think Zappos refused to send their call center business over seas?
  • Would it be beneficial to hire a team member that isn’t passionate about what you are selling?

You need to hire great people who are as passionate about your business as you are and in the process, you need to do everything possible to train them and provide them with every tool they will need to succeed.

As you hire new team members, what qualities do you look for? Do you focus more on skills or personality qualities when hiring? What type of training do you offer your new hires and long-term employees to ensure they are delivering the type of experience you desire?

Bonus reading: Check out this post on “hiring slow and firing fast.” It is a policy I first heard about when reading a book about Starbucks. It is a great tool that can help you hire the type of people you really need.

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