During our combined 56 years in the industry, we have seen many executive protection companies making huge mistakes marketing themselves, either because they can not afford it and do it themselves (and do it the wrong way), or they choose the wrong marketing company/service to represent them and what they intended to portray to the marketable public is lost or misrepresented.
Brand management is a critical component of any successful business strategy, regardless of the industry or niche. The #securityindustry is highly competitive, and building a strong #brand can differentiate your company from the competition. Also, brand management is especially important because it can directly impact the trust and confidence that customers have in the company’s ability to provide effective #security services. As one of the unique industries that can build their portfolio by ‘’word of mouth’’, how your clients feel about your services is of huge importance. Effective brand management can help executive protection companies build trust with customers and establish themselves as industry leaders, setting themselves apart from the crowd.
In this article, we’ll explore some of the key principles of #brandmanagement for executive protection companies and offer some practical tips and strategies for building a strong and trusted brand.
1. Develop a clear brand identity
The first step in brand management is to develop a clear brand identity. This includes creating a brand name, #logo, and tagline that reflects the values and mission of your company. Your brand identity should be consistent across all marketing materials, including your #website, #socialmedia, and #advertising. It should also be easily recognizable and memorable, all the while maintaining simplicity. “Less is more” should be the standard. While you are choosing your brand identity always have in mind your clientele and ‘’target group’’. What reaches your audience of choice? If you are looking to attract corporate companies or C-Suite individuals, a less ‘’tactical’’ looking brand identity will definitely be more suitable.
Today we have many executive protection companies providing very similar services making the competition between them fierce. Are you offering something different? Something unique? Do you have a new or improved method of service? What can you offer or provide that no one else does? If yes, build your brand management around that! In 2002, we saw the need for an agency that would train and provide placement for female executive protection agents. And we used that uniqueness to set us apart to build our brand and Athena Worldwide was born. In 2008, after having worked with many UHNW families, we saw the need for a hybrid service that would combine childcare with security awareness and that is how Nannyguards was created. Both of our brands are known and have been operating internationally.
2. Define your target audience
Knowing your target audience is critical in all brand management. Your brand message should be tailored to resonate with your target audience. Whom are you attempting to reach? Who do you desire to do business with in the future? We see many executive protection companies failing when it comes down to this. Many of them believe that they must (or they do) market their services to other security companies. Why would someone attempt to sell a product to its competitor? While that may be acceptable if you are looking for subcontracting opportunities, it is not if you are trying to gain new clients. Simply think, you are trying to advertise your services to companies who provide the same services! Widen your opportunities by expanding your target audience to include businesses, corporations, family offices, luxury travel agencies, luxury transportation services, placement agencies, media corporations, event production companies, etc.
Also, have in mind that your target audience may change due to the latest geopolitical circumstances or threats. For example, many corporations were in need of workplace violence mitigation during the numerous employee layoffs. There were many medical or pharmaceutical corporations that had to hire protective teams for their corporate officers during covid lockdowns. Always think ahead regarding how something that is happening currently can cause effect, thus giving you the opportunity to reach out to new clients.
Understanding the specific needs and concerns of your target audience can help you create effective marketing strategies. Another point to keep in mind is that many corporations push services or tell the potential clients what they think the client needs, rather than listening to the perceived needs and concerns of the client prior to making an assessment.
3. Establish a strong online presence
In today’s digital age, having a strong online presence is crucial. Your #website should be user-friendly, informative, and visually appealing. It should also be optimized for search engines so that potential customers can easily find your company. In addition to a website, you should also have a presence on social media platforms like #Facebook, #Twitter, and #LinkedIn. HOWEVER, always have in mind that each social media platform is different and has been designed for different users.
Let’s begin with Facebook as an example. Having a presence on Facebook may be ok for an executive protection company, and many companies already seem to base their marketing budget and efforts on it. But let’s think for just a moment, who is your target audience? Do you really believe that C-Suite personnel or millionaires/billionaires will be found looking for their next security provider on Facebook? Brand strength and recognition amongst the HNW/UHNW circles are critical.
Let’s break down some most used social media platforms:
Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn are all social media platforms, but they differ in their purpose, target audience, and features. Many security companies rely on them to market their services and confuse the likes and shares with potential future clientele. Maybe one post or picture of yours got 500 likes and 50 shares on Facebook, by people who can’t use or don’t need your services, what does that mean for your marketing? ZERO, absolutely zero! You spend time, and probably money, to advertise, and the likes and shares are not translated to clients. And let’s just break it down further for clarity. Who composes the majority of your “friends” on these platforms? Just because your Uncle Harry and Aunt Gertrude think you’re the most awesome thing since sliced bread does NOT translate at all in terms of the validity of your business or your service quality.
Now let’s discuss some key differences between these platforms:
a. Twitter is a social media platform that focuses on short-form, real-time communication. Users can share updates (tweets) of up to 280 characters, and these tweets can include text, images, videos, and links. Twitter is often used for breaking news, live events, and conversations on trending topics. It is popular among journalists, politicians, celebrities, and people who want to stay up to date with the latest news and events.
b. Instagram is a visual social media platform that allows users to share photos and videos with their followers. It is popular among millennials and Gen Z users who use it to share their experiences, showcase their creativity, and connect with like-minded individuals. Instagram also offers features such as Instagram Stories, Reels, and IGTV, which allow users to create short-form video content.
c. Facebook is a social media platform that allows users to connect with friends and family, join groups, and share content such as photos, videos, and links.
d. LinkedIn is a social media platform that focuses on professional networking and career development. It is used by professionals and businesses to create a professional profile, showcase their skills and experience, connect with other professionals, and search for job opportunities.
Now as an executive protection company, which platform do you feel is best to reach out to your audience and create a strong brand? Most of these platforms do the polar opposite of what we should be doing-posting pictures, names, locations, and assets that do NOT belong to us and we shouldn’t be advertising!
Have in mind that whatever social media presence you choose to have, you must stay on top of it, with engaging and interesting content that will showcase your audience who you are as a company, the depth of your understanding and knowledge of the field, and what you can offer.
4. The power of Blogging
Blogging is a powerful tool for brand management for several reasons:
a. Establishing expertise and thought leadership: By regularly creating high-quality, informative #blog content on topics relevant to your industry, you can position yourself as an expert in your field. This can help to build trust and credibility with your audience and establish your brand as a go-to resource for information and insights.
b. Driving traffic to your website: Blogging can also help to drive #traffic to your website. By creating valuable, informative content that answers common questions or addresses common pain points your target audience may have, you can attract visitors to your site who are searching for information related to your brand. Any topic that sparks the inquiry regarding further services is valuable.
c. Increasing brand visibility: Blogging also increases your brand’s visibility online. By creating and sharing blog content on social media platforms, you can increase your reach and attract new followers and potential customers. The more often someone sees a great blog attached to a particular brand name, they will be more and more curious as to who you are and what you are offering.
d. Improving search engine rankings: Finally, blogging can help to improve your search engine rankings. By creating high-quality, relevant content on a regular basis, you can improve your website’s #SEO and increase your chances of appearing in search results for relevant keywords.
In summary, blogging is great for brand management because it can help to establish you as an expert in your field, drive increased traffic to your website, expand your brand’s visibility, build relationships with your #audience, and improve your #searchengine rankings. By creating valuable, informative content that resonates with your target audience, you can strengthen your brand and attract new customers OR media agencies over time. And we all know that being mentioned by a magazine or TV channel due to the performance of your security services can lead to better brand visibility and new clients. We have never paid for an advertisement, and we have had many inquiries from big media outlets to either interview us or mention our story and services.
Now, have in mind, blogging needs time and commitment, it needs you to keep a sharp eye on what is or can be the most interesting topic of the day or week that revolves around security and create great engaging content out of it. What are the people looking for? What services do they need? How can you be a perfect fit to increase your client base?
5. Focus on customer service
Customer service is an essential part of brand management for executive protection companies. Providing excellent customer service can help build trust with customers and establish your company as a reliable and reputable provider of close protection services. Make sure your employees are trained to provide exceptional customer service and that customer feedback is addressed promptly.
Always make sure you keep in contact with your clients and run surveys or send emails to ask how they are finding your services and if there is something to correct or take care of. LISTEN to your clients! These are not services for you, they are provided by you for them! What do THEY need? How can you improve to care for them better? Use the feedback to correct or improve your services. Mistakes happen but it will show great leadership skills and that you care for your customers if you fix whatever is wrong. Use feedback from customers to identify areas for improvement and to address concerns.
Positive customer feedback can also be used as a marketing tool to showcase the quality of your services. Remember customer feedback can be a valuable tool in brand management and upgrading/improving services and products. What you think is needed may not be needed at all…Listen!
6. Consistently deliver quality service
Your brand is only as strong as the quality of service you provide. Consistently delivering high-quality protective services is essential in brand management. Make sure your employees are #vetted, well-trained, and equipped with the latest technology and equipment. Also, remember your employees can be your brand ambassadors! And don’t forget to regularly evaluate and improve your services to meet the changing needs of your customers.
Keep this important point in mind: You would rather have one or two solid, well-run contracts to whom you provide amazing service and products (These customers will tell their colleagues all about you), rather than a dozen sloppily run contracts that are flailing due to lack of quality and poor customer service. (They will also tell all their colleagues about you…And it won’t be good!)
7. Leverage customer feedback
In conclusion, brand management is essential for executive protection companies looking to establish themselves as industry leaders. By developing a clear brand identity, defining your target audience, establishing a strong online presence, focusing on customer service, consistently delivering quality service, and leveraging customer feedback, companies can build a strong brand that differentiates them from the competition and builds trust with customers.
Do you have questions? Feel free to reach out to us!