Brands We Love – Hate
Here?s a list of consumer brands that I absolutely will avoid at all costs (and most likely never will sign as a client). Mostly these brands offend me in some way or make me feel bad. And we all know that branding boils down to making people feel good.
Ritz Carlton: Service is now average at best. Restaurants are above average but not worth the cost. Rooms are horribly overpriced for what you receive. There is no value at the Ritz Carlton. Furthermore their antiquated Internet policies are mind boggling. In a world where everyone has a blog and converses about experiences, the Ritz Carlton has a policy disallowing 3rd party links. My wife had a link from her St. Thomas Blog to the Ritz Carlton St. Thomas and was asked to remove it as it violated their 3rd party linking policy. Hey Ritz Carlton…get with the times! Bloggers, YouTube, it’s all going to happen whether you like it or not.
Wal-Mart: Service is pathetic, I feel dirty, besides a low price what?s their value proposition?
Southwest Airlines: I?ve never even given this brand a chance, enough said. Covering up safety tests?
Northwest Airlines: Employees truly hate working there, over priced fares, mechanical issues and the worst service of any airline. When I asked why I had to buy a Redbox (snack box) on a flight I paid $1400 for from Boston to Minnesota the flight attendant replied; “Do you think you’re on Jet Blue?” Apparently not!
American Express: Very hypocritical, poor service and I feel they truly could care less. You are a number with them no matter how much business you do with them, and trust me we did over 1 million dollars per year with them. Arrogant. Citi Bank loves our business though. One more reason we hate American Express – They now outsource customer service to India. Yet another slap in the face to their customers!
Burger King: The redheaded step child of fast food. They follow and never lead. Make some good fries already. Who’s their target market? I think it’s teenagers but can’t tell. Every 4 months they have a different campaign. Here’s an idea. Determine who you are and what you want to be and then develop a campaign that sticks around.
Magellan: I’ve owned 3 different navigational devices from these clowns. None of them ever worked properly. Apparently oodles of other people feel the same way. So there is a serious brand image problem with quality. Now comes the worst part about Magellan. They don’t care! Call customer service and you’ll get “Larry”, only problem is “Larry” and “Martha” are from India (they outsource to India for your pleasure…yippee) and barely speak English. Magellan only cares about their bottom line. Hey Magellan, I’m spreading the word. You suck!
New York Yankees: I’m from Boston so this is a given. But, they really do suck! They are so poorly run and mismanaged. The only reason they win all the time is because they can outspend everyone, another reason everyone hates them. Once the Boss kicks the bucket they may….may be able to turn the brand around.
StarBand Internet Service Provider: I’m forced to use Starband but if I did have a choice they’d never see another red cent from me. Read all about why I hate Starband here.
Here?s my list of consumer brands that I absolutely love and adore (please call us). These brands give me a sense of joy, pleasure and value.
Tweeter: Knowledgeable staff, higher end products, installation and service impeccable. I’ve personally spent well over $100,000 at Tweeter. Struggling financially and I have to think it’s a management thing.
Amazon: Great selection, follow-up, service and pricing, overall great value. One of the best if not the best online brands ever. When shopping online I check Amazon first, what does that say?
iRobot:I?m in love with my Roomba vacuum cleaners. I sit and watch them dance around the room. What really impressed me was their commitment to the customer. After a year one of my Roomba?s malfunctioned. They replaced it free of charge. Service, service, service, you had me at “can I help you”.
Target:The complete opposite of Wal-Mart. What a stellar job they?ve done branding. I love Target.
Jet Blue: I?m anxious to fly, but not on Jet Blue. Thank you so much! Best service, value and employees. The employees all speak the same lingo. That’s called brand identity. Jet Blue is the master of the sky.
Coca Cola: What can I say? I don?t drink Pepsi, that?s for sure. It?s almost like I?m programmed. Diet Coke please. The leader of all leaders.
Google: They will eventually own the world. Their culture is second to none. Truly dedicated to their brand identity.
Apple: Pure genius. Products are terrific and corporate culture is phenomenal. One of the strongest identities in the world. They truly understand the value of differentiation and building a strong brand identity.
BMW’s Mini Cooper:Mini commands sticker price and resale is extremely high. My wife owns a Mini and we love it. It’s truly a lifestyle and great feeling that you get behind the wheel of a Mini. There is nothing that competes with it. Furthermore Mini’s constant matketing is fantastic. We receive great emails, kits and offers for Mini ad ons. Mini is in a class by itself.
NetFlix:They own the movie to home space. BlockBuster is making waves but ultimately NetFlix will remain the heavyweight champion.
ESPN: The original all sports network. They dominate their brand space and deliver day in and day out. The ultimate Man channel.