Marketing strategies have changed and developed over time; we are no longer at an era where uniformity, power and profits are perceived positively when it comes to successful brands. It’s not enough to be making profits and demonstrating authority over the market, customers want a brand they can trust.
The first step to building a trusted brand is to recognise the value that you can provide for your customers. Whether you’re providing a quality product, a cheaper offering, or an experienced and dedicated customer service, it should be benefitting your target audience in some way. Demonstrating how your services can solve a broader business problem is more important than simply highlighting how good you are as a company. Believe in what you do and convey passion for it and customers will start to realise the value that lies within your company.
Once you’ve established your value proposition, it’s important to make sure that what you are offering is relevant and meaningful to your customers. Providing interesting and engaging content around your product or service can help to demonstrate the relevance of a particular product or service. Targeting the correct audience plays a vital part in being relevant; you wouldn’t want a company trying to sell you ice cream when you’re lactose intolerant. Know your customer, their likes, their dislikes and everything in between, and being relevant should come as second nature.
Consistency in behaviour helps to reinforce to customers that your brand is reliable. Strong, positive reputations are built off the back of simply doing what you say you will. FedEx has built itself up over the years as being consistently reliable and delivering on time, no matter what changes and adaptations the company goes through over time, this message underlines everything that they do. Think long term in terms of your mission statement, and stick to it in order for your brand to stand the test of time.
Building and maintaining relationships with your clients can help to build a trusted brand. Using networking and social media can help to strengthen stakeholder relationships. Customer success stories and loyalty schemes can enhance relationships and build connections between your brand and your customers. Relationships work two ways, so in order for potential and existing customers to be interested in you, you have to demonstrate interest in them.
Being open and honest right from the start in terms of what you can offer your customers will help to gain their trust. If you can’t deliver on a promise, don’t make it in the first place. Simply promising what you are realistically capable of means you can deliver effectively and avoid damage control from unhappy customers. Getting customers to vouch for you once you’ve been able to deliver what you promised will help to demonstrate to others that you are a trustworthy company.
In order to create a trusted brand, it means not just focusing on your customers, but all the stakeholders involved in the business. Operating social responsibility policies, whatever they are, help to demonstrate that your business is there for the benefit of the community, and not just in it for the profits. The Body Shop is renowned for its ethical policies against animal testing reaching out to customers and building credibility and trust.
Know your customers.
Underpinning all of these points is the ability to understand your customers. Conducting market research in order to understand who your customers are and what value you provide to them is vital in building a trusted brand. It will help your business to understand its relevance and capabilities in order to personalise the brand experience for the customer. Some clients may prefer to receive letters in the post, whereas others might be much more interested in video content and articles online. Be relevant, be understanding and be loyal and you can successfully build a trusted brand.
About the Author: Sarah writes on behalf of Fluid Branding a promotional products specialist. Fluid Branding have thousands of promotional product from promotional bags to calculators, from promotional USB to umbrellas. Fluid Branding have something for everyone.