How cleaning operatives can help build your brand.
What on earth can your company’s marketing have to do with your cleaning operative I hear you ask?
One involves tangible visuals, such as websites, logos, and taglines. The other is an industry that is often overlooked; your cleaning operative often works when the office is empty and is only thought about when cleaning is not performed adequately. Everyone is sure to comment when the washroom supplies have not been restocked, or the bins are overflowing. Cleaning is an invisible industry in many ways.
Well, believe it or not, your company’s brand can be affected by the quality of your cleaning company. Or to put it another way, a bad clean can destroy all the hard work you have put into building your brand.
But, before I explain how, I feel it is important to make sure we understand what I mean by this term: “brand”.
What is a “brand”?
Whether you realise it or not, your company is portraying a “brand” identity to your client base.
Your “brand” is not just your company logo. It is the personality or identity of your company as understood by your clients or customers. It may be that you build your brand purposely, with careful thought put into the messaging on your website, social media posts, and physical premises. But more often than not, companies do not think about how their company personality is coming across to potential customers. Although they have a snazzy logo, the way their customers perceive their business is in stark contrast to the impression they think they are making.
A brand is about far more than pretty colours on a website. Everything, from the building you are in, to the way your staff interacts with customers, to the copy on your website helps build your brand and builds an impression of you.
Why does a “brand” matter?
Simply put, a great brand can win customers for you. A poorly thought-out brand can lose customers. And an inconsistent brand – a brand where the logo promises great things, but the customer experience is poor – at worst can destroy your business. At the very best, an inconsistent brand just leaves your business limping along, without direction and growth.
Why am I talking about “branding” on a cleaning company website? Well, in my experience, one of the best ways to ensure that your brand is consistent, is to ensure that you provide the best experience possible for your clients when they arrive at your premises. If your premises are not pleasant, no amount of fancy graphics can help you build a strong client base.
A robust cleaning schedule, well-trained cleaning operatives, and high-quality cleaning work are the foundation of a strong customer experience. It helps to ensure that your brand is consistent.
Good cleaning requires training
All of us can clean, to a degree. Some of us are very good cleaners at home, ensuring that our cupboards are emptied out and wiped down monthly, cleaning the places that people cannot see, as well as obvious spots. Most of us are probably just “ok” cleaners. We know how to operate a hoover and make sure the dust does not collect too much on the electronics!
But high-quality, professional cleaning requires training. There is a technique to ensuring that dust does not resettle on surfaces you have just wiped down. In certain settings, there are external standards to meet (such as CQC standards in healthcare settings) and there are processes to follow to ensure that there is no cross-contamination (such as colour coding).
This level of experience requires training. And professional cleaners have experience in cleaning a variety of public spaces in many different industries. This is why they are able to ensure that your premises are clean, presentable, and consistent with the impression you want to present to your customers and clients. They are able to clean a building in a way that is consistent with the brand you are trying to develop.
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Good cleaning requires experience
A professional cleaning company will also have the experience needed to estimate how frequently your premises will need to be cleaned based on their portfolio of work. They will use the size, busyness, and type of industry to gauge the scale of the work required. The importance of getting this right cannot be underestimated. If your premises are nice and clean in the morning, but filthy by midday, then all your afternoon clients will be disappointed with your service.
A professional cleaning service will also be aware of all the regulatory bodies and cleaning standards that your industry needs to adhere to and will train staff accordingly.
How to tell if your building is representative of your brand
If you are unsure of what impression your office or building is presenting, how about stepping out of your comfort zone and asking a trusted friend to test things out. Have them come along to your company and make notes on their impressions throughout their stay. Here are some of our suggestions for questions you could get them to answer:
- Can you see any litter in the carpark?
- Is the greenery around the building well kept?
- How clean is the reception area?
- Can you find the toilets easily?
- How clean were the washroom and toilet facilities?
- Can you see where to put litter or recycling?
- How clean was the conference room/meeting room (you can substitute this with any of the rooms your customers normally use)?
Think about every touchpoint that a client has with your business – is your brand consistent throughout?
Don’t waste your time
If you have spent thousands on a great website, branding, and digital marketing; if you have managed to grow your company’s brand awareness and client base, do not throw it all away by having a premise that disappoints your customers and makes you out to be inconsistent.
Ensure that you employ a professional cleaning service and that you have a robust cleaning schedule. Think about clients’ experiences as they come on to your site. From the entrance to your carpark, to the washrooms, think about what each area is saying about who you are as a company. Make sure your brand is consistent and you can ensure that your client base will grow and your company will thrive.