The P.A.

A weekly address from Patrick Adams,
President of St. Louis Community Credit Union

Brand Means Everything!

On December 7th, 2009, posted in: Uncategorized by

If you want to know what happens when you don’t protect your brand, just ask Tiger Woods.  The dude spent some serious coin during the past week.  Not just in the form of “hush” money; a pre-nuptial re-do; and $164 to the Florida state patrol.  Tiger spent millions (that’s right millions) in the damage he put forth to his reputation, his marketability, his trust, and his integrity.  Tiger’s image may be irreparably damaged with the Madison Ave. ad agencies, the guys and gals at the “swoosh” up in Portland, weekend hackers, and his enormous fan base.  The history books will record that the first week of December 2009 is when Tiger’s growl became a meek meow in brand power – a double bogey in golf terms.

I’ve mentioned Tiger in this very blog a couple of times – always in glowing terms.  To be fair, I’ve got to “dis” him for his serious indiscretions.  Tiger is smart.  C’mon man, did you really think that your brand was beyond reproach?  Did you think that you only existed as a professional golfer?  Please.  You or your high powered agents, management team, publicists, attorneys, ad agencies – all of the above – should know that you can’t take off a single moment from your brand.  Well, I guess you found out the hard way.  As they say on the course to warn when something bad is about to happen: “FORE.”

Brand is so important.  It is the sum of all the emotions the consumer feels about you.  St. Louis Community Credit Union is extremely brand conscious.  From the parking lots being clean, to the drive-thrus being power-washed, to the grass being cut, to the ATMs being on-line, to the phone being answered, to the teller lines being fast, to the staff being professional, to the logo wear being consistent, to the rates being good, to the fees being low, to the smiles on our faces, and to the “thank you” on our lips, everything matters.  EVERYTHING!!!!!  We know that and work to never let our guard down.  Tiger, take note.   Yes, the whole is greater than the sum of the parts.

We send out surveys to our members to stay in touch with how we’re doing in what we call our “brand elements.”  There is a baker’s dozen of very specific ideas that our staff must focus on to insure we stay “on brand.”  We get extremely high survey results, yet we are never satisfied.  NEVER.  Why not?  Well, we know that the corporate brand – what you think of us – is what matters most.  When you think highly of us, our business grows.  When you don’t have good feelings, you take your business elsewhere.  In other words, you “fire” us.

Seventy-five percent of our members, three out of every four, recommend us to their family and friends.  Good start, but not enough.  We need to do more.  We want all of our members to rave about how great of a financial institution we are.  And our brand is what gets it done.

St. Louis Community Credit Union manages our brand with great caution – all the time.  We remain committed to our members and make sure that everything we do is to guarantee that our members have an improved standard of living and a better lifestyle.

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