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Branding And Compensation Strategy by Dannielle Blumenthal

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  • 1. Branding & Compensation Strategy Dannielle Blumenthal Ph.D. @thinkbrandfirst * All opinions my own.
  • 2. Assumption: Brands Produce Value Out Of "Nothing" • Generics are often just as good. • External marketing activities create the illusion of a premium product. • The illusion is self-sustaining after the initial investment.
  • 3. Reality: The "Nothing" Is Real Employees • Employees interact with customers. • Employees innovate. • Employees keep the system functional.
  • 4. Market Logic: Divest Of Employees (Automate) • “Employees are overhead.” • “Employees are replaceable.” • “Employees need us more than we need them.” • “Pay them as little as possible and trust them even less.”
  • 5. Brand Logic: Invest In Employees • The cost of labor is an investment in brand equity. • Employees drive goodwill, reputation, preference, irrational loyalty. • Align compensation with the level of contribution to the brand.
  • 6. Sounds Harsh, But It’s Simple • Exploited employees desert and destroy your brand: Compensate them sufficiently that they stay and continue adding value. • Non-contributors kill the brand from the inside: Remove them from the organization.
  • 7. Compensation Options Are Numerous • Pay, bonus, cash award • Secure employment contract • Honors and awards • Leadership opportunities, training, travel • Volunteerism • The sky’s the limit – be creative!
  • 8. Minimize The Pay & Prestige Gap • What message does it send when the people who actually serve the customer are paid minimum wage? • Why are executives distant from the action paid so much more, and treated so lavishly? • Is there a business benefit here, or is the arrangement irrational?
  • 9. It’s About Being Smart, Not “Nice” • Exploited employees can cause the brand great harm. • They don’t engage at work, they are undermining, they drag others down. • They badmouth the organization. • They join competitors. • Better: Compensate & retain good employees throughout the lifetime of the relationship, and afterward.
  • 10. Think Brand First • The rest will follow. • www.dannielleblumenthal.com • @thinkbrandfirst

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