We all know Word of Mouth marketing (WOMM) is important.
We know people are 92% more likely to listen to their friends more than advertisements. Duh! Of course people listen to those who’ve earned their trust, their respect. The question is how do you become one of them?
Put Your Brand Face On
Businesses are making hundreds of first impressions every day. So, they need to be on top of their game, every second of every day.
High standard, isn’t it? But we’re all human and can’t be perfect all the time. But your brand can.
“Products are made in the factory, but brands are created in the mind.” — Walter Landor
Everyone lives in their own realities. They believe their own feelings and thoughts are fact. Yet, we all have different opinions, so there’s no way every person’s reality is always right. But that doesn’t change the fact that people believe they’re right. So, you must convince them that your brand — your reality — should be part of theirs.
When you can do that, you’ll be at the top of your game every day.
Potential customers aren’t fools. They know that companies often make their products or services sound like the best thing since sliced bread. They know companies are biased. (And let’s be honest. We are... because, well, paychecks are nice.)
Reviews show that real people agree with you. They reinforce the brand image you present in your advertisements, social posts, website, and every other touchpoint.
Now, you might be saying, “that’s all fine and good, but getting people to leave good reviews can be a hassle.” Last week, we were tagged in a conversation about referrals, but many of the points they bring up also apply to reviews. The author of the post and those that interacted in the conversation made some interesting points.
With good reviews and asking for them in a human way, you will gain respect with your current customers and provide a welcoming online presence to potential customers.
Make Customer’s Proud of Their Association with You
Your online presence not only exists on your website; it exists on your social media accounts, each of your influencers accounts, and customer accounts. You need to make sure each of these places accurately reflects your brand.
But how do you do that?
You know how when you get together with some acquaintances and after saying hi and asking how they’ve been, you suddenly find you don’t know what to say and neither do they, so there’s this long awkward silence?
Imagine your online presence like that. If you treat your customers only as acquaintances that you only kinda know, you’re going to get long awkward silences that don’t give off a friendly vibe to potential customers. Instead, you need to make your current customers’ friends and foster relationships between your customer base.
It might be helpful to think of your customers as fans. With fans, we generally think of ecstatic girls screaming as their pop star crush walks out on stage. But think about how much those fans support that pop star. They buy their albums and go to as many concerts as they can. To learn more about how to treat customers like fans, check out Customer Experience Pop Star Style-Justin Bieber, Adele, Taylor Swift’s CX Strategies.
Ultimately, what you need to do is develop a relationship with your customers, by engaging with them and getting to know them. When customers — potential, current, or past — see a living, welcoming environment, they are more likely to participate. And as they come to know you, they’ll be much more likely to tell their friends about you.
The way people perceive your brand will either earn you respect or distrust.
Let’s take the Coronavirus, for example. People are so worried about it, shelves that used to contain toilet paper, hand sanitizer, water, and other necessities are now desolate, companies and schools are preparing to accomplish day to day tasks remotely, and people, after completing their sprint through the grocery store, are avoiding public places.
With these facts, let’s focus on companies like Walmart and Amazon and the perceptions they might need to worry about during this crisis.
Both companies now deliver their products directly to the customer. Everyone knows that the virus is spreading quickly and are hesitant to interact with others. So, they will be hesitant of any package they receive, knowing that it’s gone through multiple hands to get to them. Ironically, people should be more worried about going to the store than what’s delivered to their door.
According to Press-Telegram, Dr. Nancy Messonnier, director of the Center for Disease Control’s Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, explained, “In general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very very low risk of spread from products or packaging that are shipped over a period of days or weeks at ambient temperatures.”
Knowing this, Amazon can rest a little easier. But Walmart, who delivers within 24 hours, cannot. In order to keep providing home deliveries, Walmart needs to state what measures they are taking to prevent the spread of the disease and reassure the public that they’re still safe to use.
Both companies should provide Dr. Messonier’s statement to educate and put their minds to rest, at least a little. With social publishing and listening tools, this can be done more easily. These companies can push the messages they need to the conversations that are more likely to start a crisis. These companies could turn a potential crisis in their favor by explaining to customers that not only is shipping safer, it also reduces their chance of exposure.
If neither company shows that they’re doing all they can to contain the disease, there will be customers that will speak out against them, especially if someone who contracted the virus decided to blame them. It would not look good.
Remember, a good perception wins respect. So, put on your brand face and make every impression count.
Next week, we’ll be discussing how social listening tools can help companies prevent and manage a crisis, and how to make every touchpoint a customer has with your brand positive.
Register for our webinar Increase Revenue with Social Customer Experience today!