Credit must be given when credit is due. The trust factor is a concept we learned about word-of-mouth (WOM) marketing from the networking guru, Dr. Ivan Misner, founder of BNI (Business Network International). The concept is worth elaboration since it applies to more than WOM marketing for your business.
The process of building trust begins with Visibility. From the networking perspective, you must make yourself visible in order for people to begin building some trust. That often means attending networking events on a consistent basis, whether it’s a BNI meeting or a Chamber After Hours event.
From the business and marketing perspective, visibility is important because your consumers and potential customers need to know you exist. In this case, visibility is how your place of business is perceived, how your products and/or services are viewed, how visible you and your employees are, and how well you advertise and promote your business. Perception needs to reflect reality. You need to be seen and recognized!
In networking, you also establish trust by building Credibility. You have to say what you mean and mean what you say.
The same principle holds when it comes to marketing your business. If you promise to deliver within 24 hours and it takes 36, your credibility is damaged. If your advertising offers a “wide selection” and the consumer discovers they have two choices, your credibility is suspect. If you post certain hours and are closed during those times, it has an impact on your credibility.
Credibility, like visibility, must be maintained on a consistent basis to build the trust you want your customers to have in you and your business. Our last two blogs have harped on consistency because it is so vital to continuously growing your business.
When it comes to networking, and we have found this to be true in more than a dozen years of being involved in BNI, your Profitability comes from the trust that’s established when you are visible and credible in your business dealings.
From the business and marketing side, establishing the profitability of your company is also built on the other two sides of the trust triangle. When your products hit the market and gain visibility, they hopefully become credible and desirable in the eyes of your consumers. This establishes the trust in you, your company, and your products and/or services that leads to the profitability you desire.
Trust is at the center of building customer loyalty to your brand. Trust must be established and maintained with your clients. Remember, too, that trust is easily destroyed. It requires honesty and hard work, as well as consistency throughout your organization. It is also worth protecting when you achieve it.
One service that a consulting firm, like Brand Irons, can offer is an evaluation of the trust factor for your business, your products and/or services.