Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Bring 'em back for More

Continuing on the theme today of customer loyality is this advice from Small Fuel:

SmallFuel Marketing Blog

A Simple Way to Get Repeat Business from Skeptical Buyers

building trust with skeptics
If you’ve done the legwork and built a marketing message that addresses your target audience and resonates with them, then you’ve got a good thing going. You’ll be noticed, even in a sea of competition.

But now what? What happens when people notice your ads? Do you think they’ll automatically come calling for your business to change their lives and solve their problems?

Most likely not. Consumers have become very skeptical. They don’t believe that the business that boasts is really the best – they’ve been there, done that. The hype is just hot air. In the end, gaining a first sale is difficult, and consumer loyalty is tough to foster.

For people to trust you, they need some indication that their trust is well placed and that they won’t be disappointed. They’re already wary. Your fantastic marketing efforts have attracted their attention, but they’re still not convinced.

You can bet that if they do trust you enough to try your business, they’re going to be watching to make sure you meet their expectations.

A Lack of Faith and Trust

In short, consumers need results that restore their faith. They don’t want to have their immediate needs fulfilled – they want to be impressed. They don’t want something good anymore – they want something remarkable.

But the truth is that being remarkable is a tough standard to live up to. Most of us are just very good at what we do or offer great products, but no one is particularly remarkable.

What you can do, though, is to foster faith. In an age where too many people have been burned, turning the situation around to prove that you won’t burn anyone makes you remarkable.

So just how do you turn skepticism around, gain trust and prove to people that you’re not going to disappoint them like so many businesses before? It’s easy. Go the extra mile.

The Journey to Remarkable

Do everything you possibly can to respond to client needs and exceed their expectations. Add value by giving a little extra – a free service, a two-for-one, a discount… Anything to make a client say, “Wow”

You need that “wow.” You need tangible proof that you’re a good business – and you need to make sure consumers see that proof.

Businesses today aren’t measured by the number of sales. A better measure is the number of repeat sales and returning customers. Consumer loyalty demonstrates that a business is reliable, dependable and trustworthy.

Build loyalty. If you’re a new business, offer a free trial of your service in exchange for testimonials or a review. Remove the risk to get the proof. (Think of grocery stores with their free food samples.) If you’re an established business, it’s even easier to gather proof of your value – just ask your regular customers to provide testimonials that they’re happy with your business.

Once you have that “wow” from a client, promote it. Display testimonials prominently, where potential customers can see them easily. Show off your past work – make it known that you do what it takes to deliver a fantastic product.

In theory, it’s that easy. Create a marketing message that resonates with people, meet and exceed their expectations, and show them proof that you’re believable and trustworthy. In practice it can be a lot harder, but stay tuned for next weeks article about specific ways to build trust with skeptical clients.

SmallFuel Marketing, Inc. 126 E 2nd St, Suite A, Media, PA 19063
Copyright (C) 2008 SmallFuel Marketing, Inc. All rights reserved.

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