A report described the recent embrace by President Goodluck Jonathan and Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) former governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi as ‘convivial’.
The two personalities hugged themselves after months of what was perceived as strange relationship. Jonathan had treated Sanusi who is now the new Emir of Kano and other top traditional rulers in northern Nigeria to a dinner to break Ramadan fast. The warm make-up of the relationship between the two personalities is remarkable especially against speculations in the media that the installation of Sanusi as the Emir of Kano will put Jonathan in a bad shape.
Jonathan had five months before their recent embrace asked Sanusi to step aside as CBN governor based on irreconcilable differences as he was rounding off his term as the apex bank boss. This generated heat in the media and some people thought they will never reconcile again.
To many analysts, what the warn embrace signifies is that there is no permanent friend or permanent enemy but permanent interest in a relationship and this is the spirit brand owners need in dealing with competitors, trade partners and consumers if they tend to be successful in business.
It is expected that in any business relationship or competitive market there must be misunderstanding and perhaps ‘fight’ but when this occurs, Akonte Ekine, a PR expert said, the fighters should not close the door. “Don’t fight and close the door, when you fight competition or business partner keep the door open for tomorrow’s sake”
As in Jonathan-Sanusi relationship, the permanent interest of any business is customer satisfaction and not fighting nor destructive competition that can take a toll on business. Experts say all competitive behaviours should be considerate and not one “leading to self destruction and perhaps ostracizing the very people you care about the most”
Some reports wondered whether Jonathan and Sanusi will ever come together and if they will how this will happen. But the top personality brands understand that as important stakeholders it is unnecessary staying apart as the essence of their position is to create value for ‘customers’. According to experts, one of the strongest reasons for competition is to have what another person has. If brands understand that two brands cannot be the same as they appeal to different audiences, there is need to embrace Jonathan-Sanusi principle, unless such competition is by nature.
In an article “How to be competitive in a non- destructive” edited by Iqbal Osman et al and published in Wikihow.com, the authors said “we all have different abilities, talents and skill levels for good reason––because we are social beings, we need to “click” together to really achieve greatness. No person is an island alone; assuming otherwise is self-destructive. Instead of seeking to steal the thunder of others, change tactics and blow their horns for a change. Let everyone hear you credit your workmates, siblings, lover, boss, neighbor or anyone else in your life with the accomplishments you can see them make. You may be astonished at the different kind of “power” this gives you––by empowering others to shine, you will shine for them and they’ll be only too willing to support you”.
Emma Odowima of BrandHealth buttressed the point emphasized by Powerhomebiz.com that businesses are born with a product, but die without customers. “Companies do not fail because they run out of money. They fail because they run out of customer’s orders. Having no cash or money is but a symptom of the deeper problem – the firm has failed to attract buyers for their products or services.
“Customers provide the revenues needed to achieve profitability. Delight the customer and you can be sure that he or she will come back to you. In addition to the revenue from the customer’s purchases, satisfied customers provide free word-of-mouth exposure that increases your market. Satisfied customers will always be quick to tell others about good books they’ve read, handy products they’ve discovered and helpful services that saved them time, money or aggravation. A happy customer can bring more loyal, buying customers, which in turn bring in more loyal, buying customers. In addition, they can provide you with feedback to improve your product or services”.
In a competitive environment, players compete for market share and not destroying competition and in such market, customer satisfaction is imperative if any player wants to remain afloat. According to brand experts, “businesses exist to generate profit and continuous customer satisfaction is the key to delivering this. In order to deliver sustainable success, brand loyalty becomes germane. Brand loyalty cannot happen without a thorough understanding of the consumer and a deliberate decision to satisfy and exceed the customer’s expectations”
For many companies, understanding the Nigerian consumer, through market research, and satisfying them is a way to building brand loyalty which is “a guarantor of profitability, market share growth and sustainable success in the market place” Some companies understand this road map.