It’s been over 50 years since England last lifted football’s most prestigious prize. With every heart-breaking exit, belief and optimism in the England team has waned somewhat. There is always a small glimmer of hope, however, and the nation is beginning to believe once more that this could be our year.
To get to this point, England have had to rebuild the fans’ faith in the team by making several key changes to how they operate. Let’s look at what can be learned from the England football team, when it comes to building faith in your brand, and once again getting your supporters (customers) passionately singing your name from the stands!
Getting the right management
Belief begins at the top! If the management don’t believe in what you’re doing, then how can you expect the rest of your team, let alone your customers, to believe in you?
After so many years of hurt, and poor managerial appointments, the latest England manager is leading the team with a quiet confidence that’s starting to turn heads. He has established an identity and style of play that resonates with fans and pundits alike.
Having a strong vision perpetuated by those in charge shapes your brand and instills confidence throughout the rest of the business. This confidence is then passed onto your customers, who buy into your business and become brand advocates based on the ideals that you’ve established.
Picking your team
A manager is only as good as the players they select. The England squad consists of key individuals, in the same way a brand is comprised of key assets; and it’s vital that those picked all contribute towards executing the vision outlined by the management.
Brands need to be constructed in a similar fashion. To build faith in your brand, you need to ensure you take time and consideration creating an identity that matches your vision and resonates with consumers. Your brand proposition should guide everything, from the people that you employ to every asset you create, in order to build a clear consumer message. You'll need a strong squad of brand assets to call upon, so that everything from your logo to your font are capable of working together to build a brand that captivates and engages your customers.
Play your own way
The great teams are defined by the brand of football they play. Whether it’s the samba skills of Brazil, the tika-taka football of Spain or the ruthless efficiency of every German team in history, they all had a unique identity that they became known for the world over.
When creating a brand, it can be difficult not to follow those that have come before, and resort to tried and tested gimmicks. Learning from the past is a good platform, but if you really want to build faith in your brand you need to create a style and identity that is fresh and exciting. By forging your own path, and establishing a truly unique brand identity, you can create a movement that people passionately believe in and want to be part of!
Having an influential playmaker in the side
In the same way that having pundits and ex-pros praising England improves public opinion of the team, getting well known and respected people in your sector to act as brand ambassadors can increase your standing in your industry.
Entering into partnerships with, and getting endorsements from respected figures acts as a crucial trust signal for consumers who start to associate your business with other well-liked and trusted brands. The impact of brand ambassadors depends largely on their level of influence. The sheer association can improve your brand reputation, increasing traffic and sales, but partnering with the right people may even allow you to grow your brand into new regions and boost your presence on social channels such as Twitter or Instagram.
Get your fans on board
There’s no better feeling than having your name sung from the terraces by a group of people who love what you do! England's passionate supporters are one of the biggest reasons why, every four years, we all get carried away in the hysteria of tournaments like the World Cup and start to believe once more that we genuinely have a chance of lifting the trophy!
Your customers are your biggest fans and your best means of building brand credibility. They’ve already bought into your business and most would happily give you positive feedback if you ask in the right way.
Collecting real reviews from your customers and displaying them wherever possible acts as fantastic social proof; helping you connect with potential new customers by giving them an unbiased and objective reason to trust in your brand.