I think we all have a a lot of experts in our lives.
"I got a guy"
Do you know what I mean?
Computer issues? You have someone you call.
Not sure which spice to add to the recipe? You have someone to text.
Is this the right outfit? You have some one to send a quick photo to.
Point is these people play an important role in your life.
Similarly, brands often play this role.
In fact, a few brands have pushed to make being the expert and/or the educator a way to stay relevant.
Expertise can be a way to get to an emotional connection.
Not the place I get coffee but the place that makes me feel global because I know how and when to order a cappuccino. Think Starbucks direct piece explaining their language and products.
Not the website that sells me shirts but the brand that allows me to know the differences in the cuts of pants and how to tie a bow tie. Think Brooks Brothers direct mail piece this Fall 2008.
Not the channel that entertains me alone but that empowers all of my travel needs. Think Travel Channel offering travel guides, booking engines, and ideas.
As many of you continue to look to drive deeper relationships between people and your brands consider expertise and education.
You may forget the one time purchase but you will never forget the brand that made you better, smarter, happier. Your brand can and should add value on a deeper level than caffeine, warmth or brain candy.
Only caution, do not bite off more than you can chew. The under delivery on an over promise can be painful to correct.