AWAesthetics: 3 Things To Remember About Brand Image
In conversation with AWAesthetics’ Clinical Director, Adam Williams.
It’s the 21st century and image is everything. Brands fight it out to be associated with certain events, places and times of year to increase brand awareness and sales. It’s not Christmas until you’ve seen the Coca Cola ad on your TV screen, just as meerkats have become synonymous with insurance comparison.
Smaller businesses can’t hope to establish such indelible links in the popular imagination because they don’t have the capital to continually project their message to consumers. That is, unless they strike gold and go viral – one pound fish, anyone?
But brand image is undeniably central to all business, large and small. Importantly, this must be reflected at all levels. Big brands have developed cold, hard, shiny, corporate images through years of one-way TV advertising and polished catch phrases.
SMEs have not.
So what can SMEs do to define their brand image? Is it just about attractive advertising and a glossy logo, or is it more than that? We talked to Adam Williams, Clinical Director of AWAesthetics, a provider of non-surgical cosmetic procedures in Manchester, to find out if brand-beauty really is just logo-deep.
“Image is a shallow concept,” stated Adam Williams of AWAesthetics. This was admittedly an unexpected response from someone working in such an image-conscious field.
“Whilst a broad generalisation,” he conceded, “I do believe there is some truth in this.” However, he continued, “Image is personal to everyone, so I don’t feel you can say ‘image’ full stop equals shallow. It empowers people.”
1 Empower your business.
We asked Mr. Williams if he felt that outward appearance was an important part of brand identity. “If the outward appearances of the business were not professional,” he argued, “such as casual clothes, untidy hair, and so on, then a customer seeking a cosmetic treatment would absolutely walk away.”
‘Shallow’ as it might be, image matters. The effort we assume has gone into a person’s appearance reflects how much we assume they care about the job they’re performing – about the people and concerns they’re dealing with.
If staff look untidy and apathetic, we assume this is because they’re uninterested in the work they do. This puts us off as customers.
Mr. Williams noted that it may be of particular significance in his line of work administering cosmetic treatments, as his clients are already predisposed to care about image.
But it is equally important to businesses in all fields. Customers have to know that your staff care about them. Brand image starts on this very basic, personal level.
2 Capture your passion.
“Related to this,” Mr. Williams continued, “are also an enthusiasm and passion for the business and for caring for our customers in the same way they would be cared for in a hospital for a general consultation.”
It is important to Mr. Williams that his customers feel reassured and well looked after. “This approach has often led to great reviews and feedback.”
The level of care accorded to each of his customers stems from the passion of his team. This reflects back on his brand.
“The antithesis of this,” Mr. Williams continued, “is the customer or business person who begins to think that image is the only element that can make them successful and subsequently start to obsess.”
As a specialist in non-surgical cosmetics, he sees this often. “It is my job to spot this and help clients achieve a more realistic outcome whilst managing their expectations.”
People investing in their image focusing only on their outward appearance run the risk of unnatural-looking results. The same can be said for brands. Fake-ness is not the objective.
Brand image is about so much more than just your marketing and advertising campaigns. It’s about the way you treat your customers, employees and business associates. People talk about your business. For SMEs, word of mouth recommendations can actually be the best form of marketing.
Adam Williams is the Clinical Director of AWAesthetics, which he opened in 2010. He is also a qualified senior nurse with a clinical background in acute and emergency medicine.
He trained to administer BOTOX® at the prestigious Harley Street Aesthetics in London. As a qualified non-medical prescriber, he prescribes and administers the medicines required for your cosmetic treatment.