Once upon a time, there was a local restaurant that I loved to visit. They had to-die-for french fries with an array of dipping sauces, a fabulous cheeseboard, and a lovely ambience. I always had a good meal and great service, which made it top o’ my list of favorite haunts.
Until they changed hands. Suddenly the menu shifted to a “gastropub”, which would have been fine, except they got rid of all my favorites and the quality of the food started to suck.
I thought perhaps I was being a stick in the mud so maybe I needed to wait things out until they got it together and then check in again. Unfortunately, the next time I went, it was even more dismal (and they changed the menu – again). Although my waiter was charming, the menu didn’t inspire me and the food was barely edible.
It was a very sad day when I raised my white flag and surrendered to the realization that my fave eating spot had morphed in a not-so-good way.
Moral of the story: change is a good thing but consistency and reliability are every bit as important. (And yes, you can transform your biz without losing quality or your message.)
If you are constantly switching your brand around and watering down your services to such a degree that people feel disconnected, confused, or underserved, it’s time to put things on pause and reflect for a minute. Who are you? What is your business? What are you serving up? Who is your audience? Why are you making a change? What is your motive (a necessary change or a fear-based one)?
I’ve seen many a biz struggle with their identity. If you don’t know who you are – or if you keep on shifting gears in a convoluted and random fashion, you’re going to lose people (and momentum – try driving a stick shift once and randomly slamming those gears – you’re going to grind that clutch, baby). People want to feel that they can trust you. They are going to have a mighty hard time doing so when you play karma chameleon every few months.
There is an art to changing your biz. The very best brands know how to do that by creating anticipation. They make it an event. Their audience is “in on the fun”. (PS and they usually understand and convey why the change needs to happen.)
Business needs constant evolution. But that evolution should be done in a way that delights, not confuses. The next time you’re about to change your business costume, think about how you can do it in a way that keeps your audience dazzled, not dazed.
“Variety may be the spice of life, but consistency pays the bills.” ~ Doug Cooper
© Theresa Reed | The Tarot Lady 2014