The UPS Store: strong brand name that customers trust.
When opening and operating a business, having the backing and support of an established brand is helpful in gaining consumer trust. A company’s brand includes the name, face, and experience customers know and expect with a business. It not only shows who you are but, when established, communicates your story and values without you even saying a word to the customer.
The importance of a brand
A brand is essentially a promise to the customer that they can rely on the business to provide an expected experience. With strong brands, the customer can trust the company behind the name, and the organization behind that company. As long as you’re part of a company that has earned and maintained client satisfaction over the years, being a franchisee means you benefit from being under their umbrella of brand trust.
One of the top benefits of starting a The UPS Store franchise is that brand trust and much of your reputation is built for you. The UPS Store has been ranked No. 1 in the “Postal, printing, communications and business services” category by Entrepreneur Magazine’s Franchise 500 list for over 25 years. As a franchisee, you’re the local face of a company that has already proven itself to a large base of customers. A considerable amount of your branding-based marketing efforts have already been completed.
With these items in place, your job as a franchisee is to promote your store within your local community.
Giving back and growing your business in your community
As a franchisee, you can help boost the awareness and reputation of your location by developing your own local marketing strategy. This includes building goodwill in your local areas by supporting civic causes and charities. The UPS Store supports and serves and supports franchisee communities through programs such as the Toys for Tots Literacy program.
Local owners like you can do the same by making a commitment to community stewardship, environmental sustainability, and the support of worthy causes. Not only will you help your neighbors and make a difference around you, your efforts also help reinforce the values of the brand and increase consumer confidence.
Some examples of cause-based marketing efforts you can take part in are:
- Sponsoring local youth sports teams or advertising in their venues
- Supporting local schools or youth groups
- Looking into local branches of national charities that are supported by corporate, such as the Toys for Tots Literacy Program
- Becoming an active member of chamber associations or local economic development programs
Each of these opportunities allows you and your business to impact the local community beyond the walls of your business. While your community gets to know you, you’ll earn respect within your service area and ultimately bring in business.
Following brand style standards
Part of your job as a franchisee is to ensure that your location meets the brand standards set by your franchisor. This helps to create a single, unified face for the company. It reassures customers that the location they enter in Florida is going to give them the same great service they received at the location they visited in Washington. Brand guidelines are available because they help keep everyone on the same page, providing the customer with the same excellent experience no matter where they are.
Keep in mind, brand standards are something other small businesses have to establish themselves and create a process and policy around. These efforts can be time consuming as they require a decent amount of research and testing. With franchising, this work has already been completed and tested for you. All you have to do is implement it.
An established brand identity helps to emotionally connect with your target consumers and motivates them to buy and remain loyal. Take online shopping as an example; 25 percent of respondents told Blumberg Capital they would only shop online with retailers they know as a way to avoid possible hacking of personal or financial information. Knowing a company and their history builds a feeling of safety for the customer.
Protecting the brand
Beyond basic marketing, many established brands have a process in place to protect their brand image. As a franchisee, you can be confident that The UPS Store won’t advertise in ways that could be seen as controversial, obscene or offensive. Franchise brands typically have processes and tools available to help maintain consistency in the look and feel of marketing materials and messaging used at the local level. Roughly 80 percent of surveyed business owners and marketers said that brand safety affects audience quality, brand equity, brand lift, ad engagement, and ROI, according to an October 2017 report from Trusted Media Brands and Advertiser Perceptions.
Some final thoughts
Overall, a brand represents a promise to your customer. A promise that their expectations of and experience with a company are going to be consistent each time they interact with the business. A promise that their needs will be satisfied. The UPS Store franchise locations can take advantage of the broad, national marketing efforts in place and focus on building local awareness to really get entrenched within the local community. Serve customers well, market with confidence and build goodwill in your community and you’ll likely see the rewards in sales and loyal customers.