Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Building Brand Trust in 3 Steps

As humans, we intrinsically understand the significance of trust in our lives. From our personal relationships, to finances and medicine – we depend on that trust to enrich our lives and keep us safe on a daily basis.

When it comes to business, having a truly successful brand is based on one single concept: trust. With brand trust, you'll sustain a loyal customer base, engage new customers and become more prosperous. A study by Mext Consulting a few years back found that when people trust a brand:

  • 83% will recommend the brand to other people; 
  • 82% will continue to use the brand frequently; 
  • 78% will give the brand's new products/services a chance; and 
  • 50% will pay more for the brand's products/services. 

In order to get your customers to buy more, try more and ultimately pay more for your products/services, you have to build brand trust. The first step in creating brand trust is to

| Nurture the customer relationship by creating an emotional connection.

Tell the brand story. People love stories, especially ones they can identify with. This connection will forge a bond between the brand and the customer, aligning them with the emotional core of the brand. A mix of relevant, meaningful content inspires emotions and increases trust. Every brand has a story, so make sure that story speaks to the customer. Keep it authentic, genuine and true. Most can relate to a common issue or problem that requires a definitive solution... so share how the brand has overcome these obstacles with a solution... and how the brand can provide the best solution to its customers' issues as well. Brands that are able to genuinely connect with their customers and community of supporters will have a strategic advantage over those brands that don't.

Secondly, reputation matters a great deal in creating brand trust, especially for the online business.

| Always demonstrate consistency, competency and credibility.

Be consistent with the level of service and quality that your brand provides, as well as in every aspect of the business. Listen to your customers and respond with action. Doing so will not only create trust; it will exhibit competency which will ultimately lead to earning the respect of customers. Nurture the credibility factor through endorsements, case studies, testimonials, customer reviews... and encourage customers to talk about their experiences with the brand via social media. Credibility will provoke curiosity among potential new customers.

When it comes to your brand, character counts just as much, if not more than it does in personal relationships. Lastly...

| Be transparent and deliver on promises. Honesty is always the best policy.

Customers are smart and savvy – they know when you’re being genuine or when they are being misled. If honesty is truly the best policy, then be transparent and lead by example and with integrity. Customers will appreciate and admire you more when you admit to a mistake, and you will earn their trust when you follow through on the promise of repairing the issue. Explain how you plan to handle it and share the steps being taken to prevent it from reoccurring. 

Everything you express about your brand is a promise. Follow through on those promises, nurture the customer relationship and your brand trust, as well as value, will thrive.