The Girl Scouts have a special place in my heart.
After being a loyal Brownie and then Girl Scout for many years in elementary school, I am a sucker for any scout who comes knocking at my door — especially when it is a cookie sale season. After my recent three-box purchase, I thought about why the Girl Scout Cookie Program works and what we in the real estate industry can learn from it – especially from a branding perspective.
1. Longevity and consistency in brand. The Girl Scouts have time on their side. With a 100+ year old brand – according to their site, their mission is this: “Girl Scouting builds girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place.”
You may not have a 100 year old brand, but you can be consistent in your messaging and in your brand. Don’t be all things to all people. Don’t change your brand messaging every other month with a new font or the next shiny new app. Be consistent in action, in your website, in how you interact with people, in your marketing, and in everything you do.
Consistency breeds trust – and as we all know, we do business with those people that we know, like and trust.
2. Adapt and change. A 100-year old brand is bound to get stale. The Girl Scouts just introduced an app for iPhone and Android which will allow you to find out about scouts and the cookies.
Are you adapting and changing your brand as needed? Do you have an updated website? Or is it stale and dated? Do you have a presence on social media and a strategy to build relationships, or are you simply “just there?”
When you think about adapting and changing – you need to think about being flexible and open to new ideas. Most people don’t embrace change because of fear. Don’t be afraid; adopt new technologies, try them out and see if they are a fit for your brand – if not, don’t be afraid to let it go and keep what works for you!
3. Traditional marketing still works. Door to door. Face to face. The Girl Scouts have made millions of sales by sticking with what works – good old fashioned face to face selling. The lesson here – don’t throw out traditional marketing that still works for you. Now more than ever – we have options.
If newspaper ads, direct mail and door knocking are still getting business for you – don’t eliminate them from your marketing plan! The key here is to pick and choose and don’t just do something because “it’s what you’ve always done” – but look and see how it is helping your brand and bringing in new business.
Would love your feedback and thoughts about this. Leave me a comment below!