Employees must have some emotional connection to your product and, by extension, to your brand.
Let’s take a journey to an imaginary ice cream company called Bubble Berry.
Let us experience the difference between employees that don’t care about your brand, product and what you have to offer, and employees that absolutely adore and love both ice cream and Bubble Berry.
The Story of Disconnection
A customer enters the shop, I look at the clock disappointedly, still 3 hours left until the end of the shift. I hope the customer will know exactly what she wants to buy so I won’t have to spend much time serving her.
The customer walks up to me and I stand up from my sit waiting for her to make her order. She says with uncertainty and a shy smile:
“Hello, I’m not quite sure which ice cream to choose as I haven’t tried Bubble Berry before, I just heard from friends that it’s amazing, I like chocolatey flavours, what would you recommend?”
Ugh, another free loader who wants to eat free ice cream. “Ma’am, please refer to the menu above, the first 5 flavours on the left are ‘chocolatey’.”
The customer lost her smile and replied “Oh, never mind, i’ll just take the second one”.
The Story of Connection
A customer enters the shop and I eagerly look up, smile at her, and before she has a chance to speak I say “Hello ma’am welcome to Bubble Berry! How can I help?”
“Oh hello”, she replies, “Actually I’m not quite sure which ice cream to choose as I haven’t tried Bubble Berry before, I just heard from friends that it’s amazing, I like chocolatey flavours, what would you recommend?”
“Mmm chocolate, I’m more of a berry fan myself but my friends who love chocolate prefer this one best, Miss…i’m sorry your name?”
“Oh it’s Catherine, and yours?”
“I’m David, very nice to meet you Miss Catherine, here take a taste of this one first and tell me what you think”.
They spent a while tasting a few flavours and talking about the ingredients and tastes in general before she decided which one she loved most.
In which Story did Catherine just buy the product?
The first one. Because in the second story she also “bought” the brand.
Whether she liked the ice cream or not, she developed an emotional attachment to the brand through David, not through the bored employee.
She could see the genuine excitement in David’s face, so she was allowed to feel the brand in the shop and in the product, because David gave her a chance to relax and open up instead of being defensive.
All that because David doesn’t work for Bubble Berry just for the money, aside from salary he works with Bubble Berry because:
The brand’s philosophy, including its principles and values, are relatable to him as a person.
He genuinely loves ice cream and is interested in learning more about its ingredients, production and anything about it. He frequently reads articles and watches shows about it.
He was treated with respect from the first moment he interacted with Bubble Berry as a company. He was treated as a person who belongs at the same level as the supervisor, manager, owner and cleaner irrespectively. The company’s values do not discriminate.
This is why David loves Bubble Berry, and this is why Catherine now loves it too.