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Brand Management

Creating Brand Value Through Anticipation

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Creating Brand Value Through Anticipation

We all know the feeling of waiting for something exciting to happen. It’s a feeling that can consume your thoughts and fill your mind. Whether it’s a personal celebration or the well-publicized product release of something you have been waiting for, seeing glimpses and hints of what is to come heightens desire and the eagerness to finally get it.

But it’s not just anticipation that offers value that might not otherwise be there. If you also include scarcity, the effect is enhanced considerably. Some marketers are masters at combining anticipation and scarcity with promises that most people don’t believe they would fall for. But promises paired with warnings, such as ‘Sign up now, before it’s too late…’ and ‘Only 500 spaces available!’ are always alluring. This kind of anticipation, built up over time, draws out the competitive spirit that has always driven humans. The delay before satisfying the anticipation gives people time to fear they will not get what they are waiting for. This, in turn, increases the desire and the willingness to sacrifice time and money to ensure that they are first in line when the time comes.

Using anticipation to build your brand and increase your business can sometimes feel as though you are just manipulating your customers and users. But that is not the case if you build your strategy on what your customers’ and users’ unmet, and sometimes unspoken, needs are. You then only need to follow through and promise to meet these needs in order to create value through anticipation. If your customers have been waiting for a desired feature or function, let them know it’s on the way in the next release.

Used carefully, making sure you never promise something you can’t deliver in a timely manner, anticipation can attract new customers, cement the loyalty of existing customers and expand on your brand value.

Contributed to Branding Strategy Insider by: Thomas Gad, excerpted from his book Customer Experience Branding, with permission from Kogan Page publishing.

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