06th Mar 2018, author: Nick Holstein
Consumers see thousands of messages from brands daily — in fact it’s hard to escape. Mobile, social, TV, billboards, the list goes on.
As a coping mechanism, people have learned to weed out the cheap from the authentic by listening to honest brands (those that are always transparent and trusted by consumers) and ignoring fake ones. Companies with authentic messages flourish, while marketers who attempt to mislead customers or participate in an unrelated conversation pay the consequences.
So, how do you ensure that your brand is an authentic one, and not another that’s easily brushed aside? Join us as we dive into to some tips!
Open and honest communication is key.
Long gone are the days when consumers are at the behest of the brand. Social media has given consumers unprecedented access to brands, and when something slips, or consumers feel like they have been misled it gets immeasurably amplified to the public. To maintain an authentic image, be transparent about all issues within the company.
A recent consumer study found that 56 percent of those surveyed said additional product information — like where a brand sources its goods and how it makes its products — instills more brand trust. Further, close to 40 percent said they would switch brands if the new one promised complete transparency.
Apologize when you do wrong.
Companies (read: everyone) make mistakes all the time. Brands that own their mistakes fare much better than those that try to cover them up.
In October, an NPR employee accidentally posted on the company Facebook account instead of a personal one. NPR quickly took down the post, which discussed Ramona and her affection for cats, and issued a brief apology. This is a minor mistake, but because the company saw fit to open about it, it was well received. You can bet the same will happen for much larger ones, too.
Go beyond the apology and offer solutions.
After you admit a mistake has been made, don’t assume that everything will go back to normal. The case of NPR and Ramona may be an example of no further action being needed, but we can assure you it’s a rare example. Provide the audience with a resolution — an action that shows how the company will fix the problem and prevent it from happening in the future.
The harsh reality of the internet is you (or your brand) could be here today and gone tomorrow. Time and time again the internet has shown its retribution can, and will, be swift. By implementing a strategy that’s designed to provide your consumers with transparency you not only lessen the likelihood of these missteps from occurring, but you create a sense of brand loyalty that will help your brand maintain longevity in an ever changing online market.