Today’s consumers are exposed to over 5000 advertising messages a day. With so much information being directed at people, companies that can genuinely connect with their customers will have an advantage over their competitors. After all, when customers trust you they are more likely to buy from you and stay a customer for longer.
This is where building a strong brand comes in. It is vital for businesses that want to earn the trust of their customers and increase revenue. Consider the following:
- According to LinkedIn, B2B brands that connect with their audience on an emotional level have twice the impact over marketers who are still trying to sell business or functional value.
- According to a study 94 percent of all consumers are likely to be loyal to a brand when it commits to full transparency.
So how do you build a strong build with social media marketing?
Here are 5 indispensable ways:
1. Spend time on planning to bring value
Do you put revenue or profit before your customers? People will know when they are little more than a dollar sign to you. They may still buy from you if your offering solves their problems but it will do little to build long term trust and repeat sales.
According to the Content Marketing Institute 92% of marketers say their organizations view content as an asset. If everyone is offering content, then this factor of the product or service become the basic minimum. To stand out you would have to offer more so that your customers perceive you and your offering as being superior to that of your competitors.
Value can be added by improving the packaging or design or simplifying the way it can be used. For example, Apple changed the way people view computers by making them easy to use. In other words, ease of use became a source of added value for Apple.
2. Monitor brand mentions and queries
Consider the following statistics:
- 80% of consumers are more likely to evaluate solutions from the brands they follow on social channels.
- According to a report there are 2.1 million negative social mentions about brands in the U.S. alone, every single day.
Brand monitoring isn’t just about maintaining one’s reputation when done correctly it can also be used to attract, acquire and retain customers.
If you have a WordPress site you could use a tool like CoSchedule to help schedule content promotion on social media. However, getting insights into how your customers are interacting with your content and what they are saying about your brand will allow for you to be a more effective marketer.
- Listen to your customers and discover their interests.
- Identify your customers, go to platforms where they hang out, monitor market trends, find influencers in your niche and track campaign impact.
3. Be accessible
According to a study by the Harvard Business Review, the most important factor in earning and retaining customer loyalty is a reduction of customer effort. Your customers want their lives to be made easier and expect you to help in ways such as making purchasing decisions through to making the most of products or services they buy.
Wistia a video hosting and analytics platform uses video not just to tell people about their story and service but to also provide excellent customer service. The team members are known to create personalized how to videos and thank you notes to customers and to help show different ways to use aspects of the software.
In other words, Wistia’s team members take the time to show rather than tell how to do something. This way their customers can remember better and recall solutions better than if they were to receive emails or get on a phone call.
To be accessible to your audience consider:
- Adding a live chat function to your site.
- Attend conferences or events where you can talk about your products and services
- Use a customer service team to answer and direct customers to the right solutions
- Use a forum to engage with customers and help them with issues that affect them on an ongoing basis.
4. Consistency should be a priority
According to Altimeter 70% of marketers lack a consistent or integrated content strategy. Yet for a brand that is growing and maintaining a brand, consistency in creating assets that add value to your customers is important. Deviations from your regular frequency can undermine a lot of hard work.
Brand consistency can help with:
- Reinforcing the commitment to achieves its purpose and social commitments
- Shows how focused the brand is on achieving its goals and maintaining standards
- Helps the brand stand out from the competition
- Helps build brand equity over time
- Ensures that customers know what to expect each time they want to do business with you.
Coca-Cola, The Hilton and Google are examples of brand that places a priority on consistency. For example, Google’s use of the same typeface and colors continue to ensure the company’s brand is easily recognizable.
To maintain consistency with your brand:
- You need to know what your customer wants and expects from your company and reflect this with your branding
- Use the same voice and tone consistently across all channels you use
- Ensure that the channels your customers use the most are consistently updated with fresh content
- Ensure the brand elements you use including taglines complement each other and are used consistently across your documents, signage and on products
- You create a branding guidelines document which contains all the above information and can be easily accessed by employees who need it.
5. Seek help when needed
How much is creating the right logo worth to your brand? What about designing a presentation or brochure. Branding is a constant effort that gets reinforced or watered down with every step that is taken.
Do you feel that you can’t produce what you need? Then it is best to seek the external help to produce it. In other words, outsource what you need.
There have been several studies showing how outsourcing can improve productivity. Consider the following outsourcing statistics:
- 78% of small businesses believe outsourcing will help lever growth versus larger competitors.
- 27% use outsourcing to reduce costs.
- 90% of businesses believe outsourcing is crucial to achieve growth.
- Outsourcing will increase productivity by a hundred-fold.
So, by outsourcing and producing brand elements that are consistent and memorable you’ll be able to build a brand that separates you from your competitors.
Take AppSumo and Basecamp for example. These companies were created by outsourcing to remote developers to make the product/service that they are known for. These companies continue to leverage outsourcing to help in certain areas all of which help with their overall brand development.
Building a strong brand with social media marketing will only help increase trust. Trust is a by-product of your commitment to excellence. In providing value, engaging your audience in relevant conversations, being accessible, being consistent and outsourcing when needed you are laying the foundations for a strong brand and the trust your customers will reward you with.