Confidence is sexy. Confidence in your positive traits and being able to deal with your negatives. Pretending you’re somebody else doesn’t work. Not in your personal life. Not as a business. If you are confident, if you love yourself for who you are, the majority will feel the same way about you.
The brand landfill is littered with brands pretending to be something they’re not: Brand extensions such as Hooters Air or Trump Cologne come to mind. Or the well-reported flogsof Wal-Mart and PSP.
A long time ago, Avis lead the charge in showing their confidence in being #2. They didn’t try to claim to be leader in everything (Unlike almost all car companies – just look at their performance claims.), they made their customers feel confident in buying from the #2 rental company, giving all others another reason to try them out. Because they tried harder.
Just look at today’s airline branding disaster: Yes, all the traditional airlines (AA, United, Delta) still have their Crown Rooms, their pre-boarding for Medallion and Platinum members. But, once seated, you still in an aging plane with grumpy employees and grumpier passengers. (Overheard on an AA flight a few days ago – Purser: “We know you have many choices of bankrupt airlines.” – Now there’s somebody being honest.)
In the new marketing reality, brands need to be authentic. They might need to confront negative truths but there are ways of turning these negatives into positives. No, I’m not talking about spin. I’m talking about using your weaknesses as strengths in your communication and conversations. Just like Avis did.