Keeping kids amused on car journeys is much easier in the DVD/Blu Ray and Apple iPad/iPod world than it was years ago when you had to rely on puzzle books and games of Eye-Spy! But there is still one activity that transcends cutting edge technology and that is ‘Spot the Eddie Stobart Lorry’.
You cannot avoid them as you travel up and down the motorways of the UK. Striking red and green haulage trucks each resplendent with a woman’s name painted on the front. Every name you have ever heard of from Jayne to Amelia, taking in double barrels such as Leah Caitlyn and Laura Flora. Children can download a list of the names and check them off as the towns race by. You can see Paige near Preston and Martha Alice near Manchester.
Eddie Stobart has made transportation ‘spotting’ cool. No more hiding on station platforms or on fields near runways. You can ditch the anorak and tick your boxes with pride.
The brand is so recognisable that it has its own fan club and a range of toys and clothing. This is incredible when you realise that unlike other well known brands like Tesco or ASDA, Eddie Stobart is not providing a service to any of the people who love the brand so much. The majority of us do not buy anything from Stobart directly. The nearest we get is buying something off a supermarket shelf that might have been transported in a Stobart lorry. But the company has successfully created a brand that has weaved itself into the social consciousness of the UK population out of something as mundane as a haulage firm.
The lesson we can learn from Eddie Stobart is that, in corporate land, one way to build a successful brand is to give it a strong personality. And you cannot get more personal than humanising trucks with real women’s names.
Some of my fitness friends have recently been looking to market their services and skills to a wider audience and want to create a brand of their own. It sounds like a tall order and an expensive one but it needn’t be. This is where individuals have a unique advantage over companies.
As a PT or a Group Exercise instructor you already have a great personality. You project your personality to your individual customers and your class participants and you can use Facebook and Twitter to project that personality into the local community.From that beginning your brand will develop.
Companies often spend millions trying to create a personality for their brands. You already have one! You have the relatively easier task of turning that personality into a brand.