Whether you realise it or not, the face of the people behind any company is the corporate identity of the company. There’s no point in having a unique logo or a catchy tagline if you don’t show the human touch.
Traditional Way of Doing Business
The concept of a business is pretty simple – one party sells something, and another party buys it. Regardless whether the transaction is over a product or service.
For the sake of discussion, let’s assume that the transaction is over apples. So on one hand, we have the apple seller, operating out of a push-cart, off a bustling street of people. These people represent his potential customers. In order to be successful, he needs to sell as many apples to as many people as possible. Assuming that the apples that he sells are all sweet and crunchy, customers will have no issues buying apples from him.
Enter The Competition
Another apple seller opens up a push-cart opposite the original apple seller, and he’s now faced with competition. Assuming that all the apples are the same, our apple seller’s business is now halved. In order to salvage his now reduced business, he offers excellent customer service. He smiles more, chats up the customers more, and even offers free samples for the customers to try before buying. What he’s doing is essentially selling his excellent customer service. And if the customers like him, they’ll buy apples from him more than his competitor.
It doesn’t matter whether he has a catchy tagline, or a pretty logo prominently displayed on his push-cart. Customers will relate to him as a person more than his logo or tagline. It is his personal touch, his charisma, his face, that customers remember about him the most.
So in simple terms, in order for him to maintain his business, he needs to “sell” his face. For it is this face that customers relate to the most, not the logo, not the tagline, and most certainly not the quality of the apples that they buy. The unique identifying point here is his personality, his personal touch.
Conclusion – his face is his brand.
Scale Up The Size Of The Business
The same thing happens as you move up the distribution chain. Our beloved apple seller is now a wholesale apple distributor. He buys large quantities from the apple orchards, and sell them to retailers, not unlike what he was before this.
In order for hims to be successful, he needs to sell as many crates of apples to as many retailers as possible. Remember, he’s not the only wholesaler in town. He has to compete with the other wholesalers to sell his apples. Again, his relationship with his customers (the retailers) is the key factor to how good his business will be. And retailers buy from him because of his good nature, his charisma, his personal touch.
Conclusion – again, his face is his brand.
Real World Scenario
Regardless whether you’re in the business of selling products or services, your face is your brand. Assuming quality is a constant, customers are drawn to you because you make them feel good. And they relate this good feeling to your personality, identifiable by none other than your face.
Of course, realistically speaking, you may have a whole department of sales and service personnel. And these people are the “face” of your company, your front-liners. But the same concept applies. Instead of just featuring only your face to represent your company, you now have a whole team of people to represent your company. And these people will then carry out your promises to your customers.
Conclusion – yet again, the faces of the front-liners are the brand.
Why Are So Few Companies Featuring People’s Faces?
In today’s corporate world, there are very few companies who prominently display the faces of their front-liners in their corporate communications. It doesn’t matter whether on corporate websites, brochures, or even advertising. Most of them are preoccupied with showing off their buildings, assets, corporate vehicle pool, and especially on their products.
Yes, you can show off these assets, but on their own, they don’t convey your personality, your charisma, your personal touch. And they most certainly don’t convey your “promise” to them.
Put Yourself In Your Customers’ Shoes
Humans are social beings. We thrive on being on constant contact with other fellow human beings. We want to communicate with other fellow beings, whether for business or social purposes. Ask yourself, when was the last time that you looked forward to talking to a machine on the phone? Never?… That’s right, nobody likes to talk to cold, lifeless machines.
Likewise, your customers and web visitors won’t be very happy if all they face are the four blank walls of your expensively decorated conference room, whether on a brochure or your website. Visitors to your office are much happier actually speaking to a living and breathing human receptionist, than punching on a keypad which department they wish to go to. Hence, portraying a person’s face, a human touch, as your corporate identity is way more effective in initiating and maintaining customer relationships.
The Powers Of A Human Face In Corporate Communications
There is no doubt that the human face is the most effective vehicle to convey a personal touch. It puts the visitor on the other end at ease almost immediately, knowing that they are in communication with a fellow human being, and not a machine.
So what can you do to improve on your corporate identity? Well, for one thing, try featuring more human faces on all of your corporate communications. Especially the faces of the people whom customers are most likely to come in contact with. Better yet, start a whole page introducing your front-liners in your corporate website.
Your Take Away From This Article
A company is a collection of human beings, coming together to “sell” something to their customers. It is not a cold and empty vessel, a machine, selling to the human customers. So humanise your company, and put a face to your corporate identity.