As marketers, our whole role has changed. Customers don’t need us to give them information about our products or services. They can access anything they want to know at their fingertips. They can do their own research on what is good or bad. Rather, they want to know whether or not they want a relationship with us. They want to know how we can make their lives better.
Connect and communicate your brand
To achieve this, you must connect with them. To connect with them, we have to share interests, be like-minded, have common goals. Customers want to know what makes us tick. You have heard the phrase “be authentic”. That is just another version of “you can’t say one thing and do another” and it means that you need to let your organization’s personality shine through in your messages.
What is your company’s personality?
In today’s consumer market especially, brands have to have a personality, develop a community and lead the tribe. In the commercial markets, we are not far behind. Unless you want to spend your days lowering your price to win business, you will need to figure out what makes you better, different, more relevant and more meaningful.
Keep your brand in mind
That difference needs to run through the products you make, the services you provide, the knowledge you share, and the type of employees you hire. It needs to be reflected in the way you interact with your customers as well as the communities in which you are located or interact. The internet creates communities without physical boundaries, and the messages sent out via internet must be consistent with your message.
We all live in a glass house now
The internet means we cannot hide. Whether or not you have embraced social media, customers and potential customers use it regularly to ask for and receive recommendations, to desribe their experiences with your company, products, services and employees, to look for solutions to their problems (perhaps solutions that you provide).
Learn to earn loyal customers
Social media allows us 24/7 access to our customers so we can be there when they need us most. When companies started monitoring twitter feeds and solving problems live and in real-time, it not only earned loyal customers but showcased their commitment to the world, earning them a “responsive to customer needs” perception from others. Companies who are still not monitoring social media may be missing important opportunities to communicate their brand.
If you are still selling (you know, investing in brochures and show room booths) instead of connecting it is time to rethink marketing.