How Trustworthy is Your Brand?
Trustworthiness. An idea we’ve had instilled in us since birth. It’s an essential aspect of everyday relationships, helping to establish and maintain them. In fact, it is so important that this trait should cross over into your business life. If your brand lacks this trust factor, chances are your social media engagement is almost nonexistent.
It’s impossible to create trust for your brand overnight, but taking the right steps over the course of time can lead to high engagement and strong relationships in the social media realm.
Know your stuff
We often hear the phrase, “Fake it ’til you make it.” In this case, this couldn’t be further from the truth. If you don’t know what you’re talking about, your followers are going to be able to tell. Instead, do your research and know with 100% certainty and confidence what it is you’re talking about.
This means not plagiarizing and giving credit where it is due. It also means giving your followers proof. If you claim to be one of the best companies out there, prove it. Give testimonials from real users, include references and provide examples of your work. This will ultimately make you more than just a name. It puts strength behind your words, and consumers won’t have to do any social media sleuthing to find the information they’re looking for in regards to your brand. Links and information should be readily available at their fingertips.
Do what you say and say what you mean
It’s simple. If you say you are going to do something, do it! If you don’t follow through, you lose trust almost immediately. You’ll become the brand who cries wolf.
In a similar sense, it also means getting rid of any “fluff,” or rambling. This goes back to the idea of having accurate knowledge about whatever it is you’re talking about. If you’re beating around the bush, even if you know what you’re saying, people will think you don’t if you’re speaking in jargon. Just get to the point.
Consistency, consistency, consistency
The days of separating your online and offline personas are over. Your behavior offline can determine your online success. Sure, we often about hear about people masking their true selves via social media, but if you’re a brand, be as genuine, honest and sincere as possible. This means admitting mistakes and holding yourself accountable.
In a similar sense, it is important to update your content regularly. Some say you should do so at least once every month. Keeping information consistent and up-to-date with your offline life can help build a substantial amount of trust between you and your consumers.
Build strong relationships with others
Who around you is motivated and going places? What can you learn from them? How can they make you into a better person and brand?
Whoever this person might be, get to know them! Surrounding yourself with other good, trustworthy brands will not only help you establish credibility, but it might even help increase what sort of things are being said about you.
Yet this doesn’t mean you should only communicate with other brands for selfish reasons. You want to build real, genuine relationships. Communicate with others and welcome conversations. Don’t simply talk at people, but engage with them. This means you might have to take a break from selling. Sure, it’s important to advertise who you are and what you can provide, but don’t engage with people with only self-interest in mind! You want to be communicative. You want to be helpful.
Establish your expertise
As a brand, you want create your own, original content. This way, users get to know who you and your voice. It’s the age-old idea of showing people what you’re made of. If you’re constantly sharing other’s content (i.e. links, posts, etc.), how will others ever get an idea of who your brand is?
Show what you know.
Trust is an invaluable asset to brands, and once you have it, it is important to ensure you keep it and build on it. By sharing your knowledge, remaining consistent, creating strong relationships and communicating with others, you’re bound to create consumer loyalty. A true force to be reckoned with.