30 Second Summary
- Building trust online with your customers will never be more important than right now.
- Trust is what binds company/customer relationships.
- Build trust by: being consistent, personable, and responsive.
Without Trust There Is No Loyalty
Building trust online with your customers will never be more important than right now. McKinsey Company published an article that summed up consumer changes perfectly. In their article, they said, “we have covered a decade in days.” There are three forces at work causing the market changes that we are seeing, the economic downturn, preference shifts, and digital acceleration.
As we slowly emerge from this crisis, it’s clear that there has been a profound impact on how people live and shop for products and services. The customer’s journey has changed. What used to be a linear path from when the customer became aware of a need and then went to their favorite business to purchase the answer to their need.
The customer journey is no longer this simple. It’s more than just building brand awareness. Today, customers will find multiple companies that can provide acceptable solutions to their needs, and they are looking at all of their options before they make a purchase.
LOYALTY: IT ISN’T WHAT IT USED TO BE
According to McKinsey, 75% of consumers have tried new shopping behaviors, and the majority, 73%, of these consumers plan on keeping the new brands that they found in their shopping routines.
One of the best ways that any company can build brand loyalty is through trust. Brand trust is a customer’s belief that your brand will deliver what it says it will deliver on a consistent basis. Trust is what binds company/customer relationships.
Ex-CMO for Unilever, Keith Weed, said, “a brand without trust is just a product.” When your customers trust your brand, they feel more confident in their purchase decisions.
Trust is so important that companies of all sizes are starting to employ reputation management strategy that will help them manage what is being said about them, their products, and even the people that work at their companies.
3 STEPS TO BUILD TRUST
Be sure that your marketing messages are consistent in the brand value that they are referring to.
Does your company go to market as a quality leader? If so, it’s inconsistent to have a marketing message talking about deep discounts on your products or services.
To the contrary, if your company promotes competitive pricing, but in actuality, you’re much higher in price than your competition, this will not build trust.
Pre-internet days, being personable was a lot easier. Everyone in your company knew your good customers. You would not only know their name, but you’d also get to know their preferences in products/services and what they found to be valuable.
With the growth of customers moving online, being personable is more complicated, not impossible, but more difficult. It has to be a conscious decision for your brand to be more personable.
You can accomplish digital personalization by developing a strategy to collect the appropriate data and then apply it to all digital marketing channels.
You can no longer ignore social media channels. People are often afraid of negative reviews, so they just don’t engage with social media. This fear is the worst thing that you can do.
People will be talking about you through social channels, whether you are engaged or not. The problem in not responding to conversations about your company is that literally hundreds of people see how you respond or don’t respond.
Your engagement will impact trust, even with people that haven’t done business with you yet.