Does a lack of understanding your “external brand” inhibit your growth?

Internal and external brands out of alignmentWhat would a client say if they realized that their ad agency or marketing firm only had a 50-75% understanding of how their brand was perceived by their customers? Perhaps, “don’t let the door hit you on the way out.”

Professional services firms have only a 50-75% understanding of how the market perceives them – their “external brand.” A study by Hinge Research found gaps between external and internal brand perceptions on a significant number of key issues, in part because many clients won’t proactively tell you when they are unhappy.

A clear correlation between client research and profitability and growth

  1. Those firms that conduct structured research on themselves, even occasionally, are more profitable and grew faster and
  2. Those that did frequent client research were even more profitable and grew even faster.

Taking steps to understand your external brand will improve client retention. In addition, the effort should unearth key insights that will better inform your marketing and new business strategy and ultimately allow you to attract, convert and win more of the right new clients. After all, if you understand the changing needs of your target market, you’ll be better prepared to anticipate and meet them.

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