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Make a Process, Then Make it Flexible
By: Janet Kalandranis
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It’s important for all brands to have a process — not just one process, actually, but many, for anything from operations to PR and marketing to development. Without a process there’s no standard of how things should proceed and what produces success over what produces a failure. That’s why brands create processes to ensure they can re-create successful events and hopefully use that same process in the future. These processes are always what a brand becomes known for in future years. A process, once created and repeated, starts to become part of the brand. Maybe it’s the unique way a receipt is given to a customer or the way in which a product is packaged. These processes start to stand out to customers as differentiators from one brand to another. In short, processes are needed. BUT, and this is a big but, these processes need to be flexible. This allows a brand to be relevant and grow from year to year without losing success.

Talking a bit more in detail about this process conversation, it’s important to look at an example. Many consumer businesses — restaurants in particular — look for success in opening new locations. Adding store after store allows them to access more customers and gain more dollars. And most brands have a process for opening a new location. This includes the type of building they want and the type of area in which they want each location to target specific customers. All of these processes help define what the brand does and what makes it move from one year to the next. Subway is a great example of how to create a process, but then make sure that’s its flexible. The sandwich shop is known for opening locations in order to gain additional success; however, the locations tend to be untraditional. That means everything from laundromats, health clubs, and movie theaters are definitely places the brand considers when it needs a new Subway shop.

Although Subway is able to take its long-standing process of creating locations and then make it flexible to work for years to come, it’s important for brands that want to deviate from a process that they make sure the original process can already produce success. A process can’t be altered unless it’s been shown to create some successes of its own. So don’t automatically go out and create a process for each and every event, but instead determine something that will work time and time again. From that point, alter away — but only if it creates success, of course!

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About the Author
Janet Kalandranis is here to give you all the little brand thoughts that run through her head with a little dash of spice. Find her online here.
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