Archive for the ‘abandoned’ Tag

Vanishing stores leads to ‘Brand Ghosting’…

Derelict B&Q store, UK

People discuss brands, identities, perceptive values etc etc until they are blue in the face. However something I recently noticed, with the crippling blanket of financial gloom hanging over us, is the amount of downsizing or relocating that is happening. Of course there are also the less fortunate who have simply had their business well and truly crunched, but what struck me as I passed by a recently vacated B&Q was how little attention brand owners pay to the state of the premises on leaving. It appears there is little thought as to who may take your place, how brands communicate their departure to customers, what state the location is left in and did you remove every trace of your brands existence there?

After some discussion I have realised that there is a new term to be coined here, ‘brand ghosting’! People can still remember when your company was last there and how they were treated when you moved on or closed down, the fact is a customers memory can live on for some time and definitely has a measurable impact. The question is what can brands do to minimise the effect when its out of your control.

First and foremost its the old communications game, advise and inform your customers well in advance, let them prepare and feel a part of goings on. Make sure the premises are pristine on departure, removing your identity but leaving a good taste.

The big issue with the B&Q experience was that it affected my view of the entire company not just that particular store. In this volatile economic climate where the unexpected is expected brands have to be more careful then ever to always portray themselves in the most positive light.

The reason this point rather caught me unawares was the realistaion of how little brands really consider the vacation impact? The B&Q I saw was a mess of graffiti and rubbish, however because the brand identity was clearly visible, with that lovely orange hoarding the effect I was left with was a negative feeling about the state of the company. In times like these can any brand afford thoughts like this to creep into the publics conscious?

Pomegranate would love to hear about more experiences of brand ghosting, so if you have seen any on the high street lately, get sharing?

To learn more on branding and brand confidence visit the Pomegranate group website and find out what it’s all about!

Advertisements