What makes a premium brand?
The definition of the word premium is hard to nail down. It can hinge largely on the intangible, but you can get a pretty good idea of what premium means in relation to brands based off a few context clues: price, quality, and customer perception.
A premium brand charges a high price because they are delivering on quality, customer service, and a little je ne sais quoi that the people crave. These brands have jockeyed through the masses and positioned themselves up front as not only a quality product provider, but as the ultimate lifestyle goal. A consumer simply has to see a visual representation of that premium to know what to expect: an apple on a laptop, four overlapping rings on the front of a car, a white bow on a little blue box.
The brand has promised quality, confidence and authenticity, and the consumer knows they will deliver.
Being a premium B2B brand
We know the name of the game for big consumer-facing companies, but how does it work for the B2B brands who want to own the position of being a premium brand with a premium price tag?
The idea is the same: offer the best product possible and price it as such. But as a B2B brand, you may not have the same social capital that comes with consumer idolization. You have to demonstrate your superiority in other ways: through a proven track record of brand consistency and problem-solving.
If you want to be the premium B2B brand in your industry then you have to have a proven track record. One way to do this is with customer testimonials.
Testimonials allow customers to sing your praises and detail their positive, first-hand experience. It puts information about your service out there in a way that reads as authentic and unfiltered, which helps build trust in new customers.
Another way to highlight your prestige is by listing awards your company has won or industry articles your company has appeared in. Media relations is also very important when it comes to cultivating a premium brand. You want all messaging to be consistent and for your brand to be viewed in a positive light. If you want your company to be the leader of the industry, then it is important to be an educator as well. Blog posts offer a great way to educate and explain aspects of your company, your services, or the industry.
This is a no-brainer.
Brand consistency is something you should be striving for no matter what, but it is especially important when you are trying to establish yourself as the premium brand for other businesses. You need to be confident in who you are and what you do and deliver your product or service with the highest quality every single time.
Customers need to know that they can expect the very best from you no matter what.
Be a problem solver
Be proactive. As a premium brand you know what your customer wants before they want it.
You have the knowledge and the know-how to deliver on their specific needs in a way that nobody else can. Investing in customer service to make this practice standard is key. If you place a big price tag on your service but can’t deliver, you are not fulfilling the requirements of even a basic customer-company relationship, let alone asserting yourself as a premium brand.
If you can’t solve the customer’s problem before they have one, you can at least solve it once it comes to your attention. The relationships you cultivate with your clients will go a long way in supporting your premium position.
Knowing what it takes to be a premium brand isn’t rocket science. You need to offer the best product or service quality, price it as such, and then deliver on your promise. Easy enough, right? As a B2B brand, you also need to prove your premium status. Thought leadership, brand consistency, and being a problem solver are all key to establishing yourself as a premium brand and keeping it that way.