It’s always great when a brand earns a trusted brand status with customers, as this indicates that they are doing something right. But why should only brands build relationships with their customers? Why shouldn’t marketers, bloggers, and other influencers create stronger connections with their audiences as well?
In today’s world, customers are discovering new ways to connect with brands and vice versa. Companies need to re-invent themselves to remain relevant, and influencers can help them do that. However, not all brand-influencer relationships are built the same way, and it’s important to understand what makes for a successful interaction.
1. Be authentic.
This is the most important thing because customers can easily tell when you’re trying to fake it. If you want to build a trusting brand relationship with your customers, be authentic and consistent. This doesn’t mean that you have to be completely open about your plans or strategy, but it does mean that you need to behave, think, and act like a trustworthy, likeable person. Your customers will be better equipped to trust you when they feel like you’re being yourself and not trying to trick them into buying something they don’t need. As an added bonus, you will develop deeper connections with your audience because you’ll seem more like a friend than a brand.
2. Communicate value.
Customers are always looking for value in return for their money. So if you want to build a relationship with your customers and earn their trust, you need to provide them with value. Fortunately, this can be easily done through effective communication. When clients purchase a product or service from you, they expect you to follow up appropriately. But what does this mean? It means you need to listen to and understand what your customers need, and you should do everything possible to fulfill those needs. Every industry and every product/service have certain requirements that customers want to be fulfilled. For example, if you sell bedsheets, but your customers come from the hair-product industry and want your sheets to look like theirs, you’ll need to listen to what they say and adapt your offerings accordingly.
3. Use metrics and objective evaluation tools.
In marketing and sales, we often talk about metrics, numbers, and facts. However, customers are more than happy to engage with brands they feel trust, and this should be reflected in your metrics. After all, you can’t build a relationship with your customers if you don’t know how to measure it. To get started, you’ll need to analyze the data from customer interviews, case studies, and customer behavior to determine factors that contribute to positive or negative brand experiences. With this information, you can develop a course of action that will allow you to strengthen your brand loyalty and trustworthiness.
The good news is that you don’t need to be statistician to do this. There are a number of free tools online that can be used to gather and analyze data regarding consumer preferences, opinions, and behavior. For example, you can use Google’s free Survey Tool to get real-time feedback from your customers. You can then use this information to determine the next steps in your marketing strategy. In addition to the online tools, you can use your own devices to collect data, such as smartphones and tablets, to gain a better understanding of how individuals interact with your brand. This level of detail will take time to accumulate, but it’s worth it in the end.
4. Be transparent.
Customers want to feel that they are getting the best possible deal. So if you want to earn their trust and respect, be transparent about your pricing and terms. Just because you have a low price point at the moment, doesn’t mean that you will keep it forever. The key is to be upfront and honest about what you offer, and ensure that your customers feel like they’re getting good value for what they’re paying. You should always aim to provide the best possible product at a great price to get the most out of your customers, and this will earn you their trust and loyalty.
5. Be accessible.
It’s important to be accessible to customers whenever possible. This means that you should have live chat, email, or phone support available to answer any questions that your customers may have about your products or services. Even if you’re not a traditional salesperson, you should still try to behave and act like one. Being accessible to customers shows that you are a warm and approachable person who is invested in their success. Additionally, customers appreciate when companies make themselves available for support beyond the sales process.
Every brand–customer relationship starts with a single, seemingly simple interaction; but to truly create a connection and earn the trust of these customers, you need to continue to engage with them. This engagement may include sending them additional, exclusive content, inviting them to participate in special events and conferences, or offering them compelling deals on their favorite products. Additionally, you can use digital marketing techniques, such as webinars, podcasts, and infographics, to communicate with your audience and stay connected.