Building brand loyalty is a key to success in business, and it starts with getting the customer to trust and believe in the vision of the business. Setting the tone for trust begins with honesty – a belief that the customer can rely on your business to deliver as promised. You’d hope that being truthful and forthcoming is the premise of every business, but it never hurts to refresh those skills.
Here are three principles to always keep in mind:
Do Your Best: Customers pay attention to the level of detail that is given to the product or service offered. Customers will trust your company when they believe that the highest level of attention is being paid to the customer’s needs and that in the end, the company did its absolute best to deliver a premier product or service.
Be Transparent: As in life, people become wary when they feel that information is withheld from them. There is no truer example of this than the small business where customers can easily (and hopefully) become well-acquainted with the company. If mistakes occur, be honest about them and do so as soon as possible. Use your social media channels to explain and update customers on delays, outages or changes to service. Incorporate messaging – be it traditional print or digital – that comes directly from top brass so that customers feel that they are hearing the information straight from the source, and ensure that employees on all levels can answer and address questions pertaining to the gaffe.
Commit: Trust in relationships are built over time so it’s important to be present in the relationship with your customers. While Don Miguel’s popular book ‘The Four Agreements” argues not to take anything personally, you should personally invest into your customers. Over time, they will invest in you.