Why Your Brand Sucks and What You Can Do About It

By on July 2, 2018

Chances are it is not your product or service that sucks. In fact, your product is probably great. Instead, it is likely your brand image, the way you present your product or service to your customers, that is the problem.

So why do some brands suck while others succeed? Check out these four common reasons and discover the ways in which you can fix them. After all, the image you present, whether good or bad, will be perceived as reality by your customers.

Reason 1: You Have No Identity

You should have a clear understanding of the who, what, and why of your brand, and make this clear in all of your marketing efforts.

Who is your brand? Think of Daymond John’s FUBU brand. Who they are is right in the name FUBU (For Us By Us). In the beginning, they were young, urban youths making clothes for young, urban youths. They were letting potential customers know that they were people just like them, not nameless executives in a high rise office.

What do they do? They make clothing for the hip hop lifestyle. Why? Because major clothing companies were ignoring the market and at the time few choices were available. In short, their goal was to provide quality, stylish clothes which reflected their customers’ lifestyles.

Once you have a clear understanding of your identity, make sure everything your company does is in line with that identity. If you make quality budget watches for middle class people, don’t make a product designed to compete with Rolex. If you make high end, all natural, organic foods, don’t come out with a line of snack treats which are filled with high fructose corn syrup. These are extreme examples, but both illustrate how not being in line with your identity will confuse customers and damage your brand.

Reason 2: You’re Trying to Do Too Much

Many brands want to be everything to everyone, but if you provide too many services, customers won’t see you as an expert in any of your target areas. For example, let’s say you need a tax lawyer and see an ad for an attorney who claims he is an expert in the following areas of law: tax, corporate, real estate, personal injury, criminal defense, and family. Then, you see a second ad for another attorney who only advertises expertise in tax law. Which would you consider the expert?

Your brand doesn’t have to produce countless products or services to succeed. Think of how few products Apple actually makes compared to other electronics manufactures who make practically everything. In short, discover who you are, find your niche, and be an expert in that area.

Reason 3: Your Marketing Focuses On You Instead of Your Customer

Yes, your brand needs a story. And yes, you have to promote yourself. But you should always promote your brand by telling what you can do for the customer. Don’t just talk about how great you are. Talk about the value your brand brings to the customer.

Instead of saying, “We are the best home cleaning service around,” you might instead discuss how your service gives customers more free time and provides a break in their already too busy lives.

Reason 4: You’re Not Effectively Engaging Your Customers

Nowhere does this exist more than in social media—the keyword being “social.” People want to talk; they want to communicate with you. Too many brands have social media pages but don’t regularly update and don’t respond to messages from customers. If you don’t post consistently or respond to messages in a timely manner, what message does this send to the customer?

While you may see it as “I’m too busy running my business to post on social media,” customers see this as letting an aspect of your business lapse and go unmaintained, something they then associate with your brand as a whole. If you’re going to have social media, be social. Talk to your customers. Post consistently and reply to messages in a timely fashion.


If some of the reasons above remind you of your brand, don’t worry. Any brand can be turned around with careful thought, planning, and implementation. If you know your business’s identity and values, and consistently convey them in everything you do, you will be on the right track to creating an effective and successful brand.

About Matt Ramage

Matt Ramage has been marketing websites for over 20 years. He loves helping businesses improve their user experience and searchability on the Internet. Matt now heads Emarketed, which is located in Los Angeles, California. Emarketed specializes in SEO, social media marketing and web development.

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