Reviving Old Friendships

Growing up, eating at Mr Bigg’s was a biiiiiig deal. It was the kind of place families went to for lunch on a weekend. They had the best (party) Jollof, fried chicken, and meat pie.

Mr Bigg’s is one of Nigeria’s fast food restaurants. Owned by conglomerate United African Company of Nigeria PLC, there are currently around 170 locations in Nigeria, including the country’s first drive-through restaurant, with another four locations in Ghana.

From Wikipedia…because Mr Biggs still doesn’t have a website…in 2019.

For years they were on top. Then they got comfortable. Too comfortable, actually.

Food quality dropped.

Services became slow.

Employees became rude.

And of course, customers went away. For more than a decade now Mr Bigg’s has been trying to rebrand itself without success.

Its always harder to come back from past glory. But it’s possible.

If your business has slowed down, the first thing you need to do is understand why. To fix it, you need to get to the root of the matter. Do not be in a hurry to rebrand.

We had a client we designed a logo for sometime in December 2018. Last month, he came back and wanted a new logo.

We asked him if he wasn’t satisfied with our initial work. He said he loved it, it’s just that his friends told him its probably the reason why his business isn’t moving as it should. And he believed them.

A new logo will not solve your sales and marketing challenges.

PHCN is still referred to as NEPA (which had a terrible track record) regardless of what city you are even though Problem Has Changed Name. Nigeria still faces serious power challenges today.

The Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), formerly the National Electric Power Authority (NEPA) was an organisation governing the use of electricity in Nigeria.

Wikipedia

Rebrand without making it obvious. Slowly improve your products/services. Your sales numbers will tell you if it’s working, not your friends.

Rebranding is more than changing your business name, getting a new logo, renovating your shop, and having a new uniform. All that should come last. First, fix the main problem.

I’m sure your friends mean well, but they may be wrong. Numbers, however, don’t lie.

Is your business slow or stagnant?

Reach out to your old customers and have an open discussion. Ask them why they stopped buying?

Caution: Beware of fake answers. Ask open-ended questions instead. It’s easier to catch a lie that way. I wrote about it earlier. Click here to read. Fake friends will lead you astray, in friendship and in business.

Give them an incentive for their time if you can. If they complain about the poor quality, offer to send them an improved sample for a significant discount or free (if you can).

After all, you have improved over the years, since they last patronized you.

You will be amazed at how many people will take you up on the offer.

Some customers simply forgot about you. Out of sight, out of mind.

Other reasons people stopped buying from you could be:

  • They got a bad experience
  • They have outgrown you (e.g. you sell mass products, but they now want luxury products because their income has increased)
  • You changed your handle and they lost touch with you

Reviving old customers is one of the best (and cheapest) ways to ‘rebrand’ your business. You don’t need to spend much time persuading customers or spend money advertising to new prospects.

Simply address their needs and you’re back in business.

By the way, as always, most of the things I talk about also apply to your professional and personal life.

Old friends are the best kinds of friends, do you agree?

Reach out to an old customer/friend today. Show that you really care.

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