Chairman, Board of Directors, First Bank of Nigeria, Ibukun Awosika
has urged small business owners to focus on the value and the equity their companies can deliver to their customers rather focus on the name of the company.
Awosika in her words said that putting effort in rendering value to customers is as a result of the good value business owners do everyday and not about the size of the company.
“It is about the experience businesses deliver to their customers that count. What you don’t learn to do in your early days will become more difficult for you to do as you grow bigger.
When you are small and cute is the best time you can be engaging the customers”, she said. She pointed out that every business must communicate the integrity of their brand to win customers’ loyalty.
“People trust a brand based on the character that the brand represents, not because of the name of the brand. Businesses that want to remain relevant in years to come must find ways to do businesses right, and ensure that they must deliver quality services and products all the time.
It may look as if they are losing when they are doing it, but there would definitely be harvest when they plant the seed of doing the right things that would facilitate their business growth and put them on the speed of growth. It’s all those right business attitudes that business owners do daily that represent what and how brand is evaluated”, she said.
Awosika said that entrepreneurs must decide from the onset the kind of company they want to build with the type of message they want to attach to their brands.
She cited the example of First Bank that is over a hundred year-old as an organisation that is going through processes and responding to changes in times and its season.
“There is no institution in Nigeria that has that kind of age, tenacity and stayed that length of time; transited to becoming government institution overtime to the period when it went back to the private sector”
She further urged business owners not to give preference to one customer over the other, “don’t pose your product to be nice to the rich guy when they come to buy from you, because the guy that you ordinarily look at today will have a change of status tomorrow and his experience will impact on how he rate you or deal with you when his status has changed”
“In building a company, entrepreneurs must know that it’s not primarily about the brand name or amount they have spent on advertisement but about the brand experience of the company which is the true reality of what brand represents and how people will experience it and passes it on”
She said all the things she learnt in business became the tools that attracted people to her to join all the multiple boards that she is today.
“You got a business brand and you have a personal brand. Your personal brand is you, your world, your conduct, your integrity, people are watching , they are listening, they are observing. They see where you and they know where you are”, Awosika said.