How to create a trustworthy brand
Ever thought about setting up a business? Well, getting started is actually the easy part. You define what do you want to do, gather the budget, fill out some legal paperwork and go on to conquer the world! These are however all the stages that come after launching your business that will really define it. Competing with other companies in the field, unexpected expenses or terrible lawsuits are only some of the whole myriad of tough situations that might happen.
The hardest battle is however, always the one for the customer’s trust. Exactly, not for their money, but their belief that your company is reliable and trustworthy. Business is no longer about making money (well, obviously, this is important too!) – it is about creating relationships (which ultimately, will also bring you revenue!). It is about a dialogue between you and your customers.
Developing your business’s brand is a great way to ensure your trustworthiness. It might seem tricky at first, but branding is actually very intuitive. In this article, I am going to show you several ways, in which you can create a trustworthy brand, that customer will gladly be loyal to!
Be honest with your customers. Dishonesty is the first step towards mistrust. If they feel that you have something to hide from them, they will likely find another business that offers a similar service or product. How to ensure that your customers perceive you as a transparent business? Keep them informed! There are plenty of channels for you to do that. Social media immediately come to mind, but there are many more methods to keep in touch with your customers. Each of them serves a different purpose as well. Social media are a great way for day to day communication in a more direct way. Press releases serve for announcing significant developments like new partnerships or an astounding hire. News pieces and blog posts can be used to inform customers
Be a human being!
Today’s people are very sceptical about corporations and do not believe in their transparency. This is not surprising considering a high volume of various corporate scandals, lawsuits, data leaks, etc. as well as the advent of the Internet and availability of information.
In this sea of distrust and greed, it is important for you to remain relatable to your customers. What is the personality of your company? What is the first word that comes to your customers’ minds when they think of your business? How can you influence that? How can you show your customers that you are on their side? It is important to think of an answer to these questions – that will help you avoid becoming a faceless business that gives an impression of being concerned exclusively about revenue. People, after all, tend to trust other people, not businesses!
Showing your human side can be also done by acknowledging your mistakes. It might sound cliche, but everyone does them – nobody’s perfect! By owning your mistakes, you’ll be perceived as authentic and transparent, which will win you a lot of customer trust!
If you are not sure about how to give your business a face, this is the solution! Every person you’ve employed has their own story. Sharing stories of people who build the company is probably the best way to show your business’s human side. That front-end developer whom you hired over a year ago and is doing amazing? He used to play in a rock band and has a couple of tattoos. He also graduated from a really good university balancing education with a part-time job. By sharing his story, you are showing something that might seem obvious, but is rarely acknowledged – businesses are created by ordinary people.
Alternatively, you can tell stories of your customers! A satisfied customer will act as a seal of trust for others, encouraging them to get in touch with your business!
Don’t hesitate to answer the questions!
Customer service can make or break your business. An unresolved or badly handled matter can leave a really bad taste and discourage people to get into business with you.
With social media, customers can contact your business easily. They might want to inquire about a new product, leave a complaint or praise. In every case, you need to have people who know what to answer to any questions. Also, in every case, the answer needs to be completely honest.
Answering questions can build a great relationship between you and your customers.
Display your values, mission and vision!
What do you believe in? Why did you set up your business in the first place? We already said about the importance of telling stories of your employees and customers, but what about the story of your business? Have you been an underdog, fighting hard to break even? What do you want to achieve with your business? Your customers might be really interested in knowing the answers to these questions – they want to deal with businesses that are authentic and genuine, and built by passionate individuals.
A good practice to build a trustworthy brand is CSR – Corporate Social Responsibility. Yes, it is often used by massive corporations such as McDonald’s to sweeten the bitter taste they left with their unethical practices. However, you can use it to genuinely support causes you care about! Whether it’s donating to charities, supporting forest planting or providing job opportunities to handicapped people, CSR is a fantastic way for your business to contribute to important causes. But remember – be authentic about it! Don’t use CSR to mask some shady dealings!
Listen to your customers!
Feedback is the best way to improve your business. Customers might sometimes suggest some areas to improve or change in your business. They might also offer solutions to problems you might experience. Don’t be afraid to ask for help and most of all – make sure you listen! That will not only allow you to improve your company, it will also make your brand stronger – you will, after all, get to know how your customers perceive your business.
Creating a trustworthy brand is mostly about taking care of what your customers think about you. It’s about transparency, honesty, communication and sharing what’s important to you. A relationship with a customer needs to be taken care of and catered to in the same way as friendships or marriages need constant attention.
The benefits of a trustworthy brand are immeasurable. There is nothing as valuable as customer loyalty, which is the result of creating a trustworthy brand!
You can call our Design and Technology Team or use the form below if you need a new website:
0333 014 2035
Author: Seb Waligorski
Digital Media Manager at Ionize
I am a Branding and Digital Media Specialist creating Business Recognition and Online Visibility since 2010. I make sure that businesses stand out from their competitors and benefit from increasing customer loyalty and sales.
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