Brownlow NightLike millions of others I sat by the television the other night and followed closely as the Brownlow Medal count was held at the palatial Crown Casino and watched with great admiration as the winner of the most prestigious individual award Matt Priddis accepted his prize with an amazing level of grace, humility and professionalism.Through this speech it occurred to me that several of the same factors that had propelled this rare individual to this moment of glory are the same key principles that each brand needs to embrace to work towards gaining the same level of respect and admiration.
1. Play to your strengthsEvery business will have some area or areas of expertise and excellence where they are as good or better than the opposition. Hopefully with a well thought out and updated SWOT analysis these strengths will be properly articulated and understood for your business. Know them, leverage them and always play to them. In Matt's case, his incredible in and under ball getting ability.
2. Identify areas of development and improve themSo often with awards like this one we see winners of awards with players who are gifted and seemingly have no weakness but the reality is they all do. The only difference is they acknowledge those weaknesses and actively work to consolidate that area over time. In Matt's case, early on his disposal by foot was inconsistent and needed further refinement.
3. Be transparent and real in all your communicationsPeople can smell a fraud a mile off so don't be one. When you speak for yourself or your brand be real at all times. Put the ego on hold and speak plainly and to the point. As a rule, people appreciate this and reward it more often than not. In Matt's case his acceptance speech was filled with a simple honesty that was clear for all to see.
4. Respect and acknowledge your rivalsIn the real world few if any businesses operate in a monopolistic arena. It is important to be aware of and acknowledge the value of key competitors and the value that they offer the target market you also seek to positively influence in a sincere and genuine manner. In Matt's case, he spoke in glowing terms of the champion midfielders he has admired and tried to learn from for years citing the likes of Ablett, Judd and Selwood.
5. PersevereUnlike other marketing functions such as sales promotion, social media marketing is a proverbial slow process which requires time, effort and patience. Greatness almost never happen overnight. If you're not prepared to do the hard yards in finding, engaging with and supporting the needs of your audience, social media is simply not for you. In Matt's case after being overlooked in four straight national drafts, he was eventually drafted in 2006 and over the course of the next eight years established himself as an A Grade midfielder and a people's champion.
6. Be humbleModesty some would argue is not mandatory. On this you can make your own mind up but personally I prefer someone modest in victory and humble in defeat. Someone that takes accountability and never practices the art of deft deflections to the fine leg boundary. Companies that mirror this approach as an extension of the core values are universally admired and ultimately successful. In Matt's case, a speech that resonated with a genuine modesty and almost disbelief at having achieved such a sought after prize.
7. Always look the partUltimately people expect to see a professional looking and well organised, functional approach to everything you do to reinforce your positioning and the value that you bring to the table should they decide to use your product or service. In Matt's case, Exhibit A: the photo above. Enough said.
SummaryIn the end every business wants to impress and positively influence both existing and potential customers alike, yet only some end up doing so. A quietly spoken young man this week etched his name in football immortality but more important showed us all in a few minutes how it's done.
And until next time, good luck and good marketing.