“Marketing” is a ubiquitous term in the world of business, and it’s well understood that any business that wants to have a good chance of thriving — not to mention expanding — needs to have a sophisticated marketing apparatus behind it. Ultimately, though, what does “marketing” really mean when all is said and done?
Fundamentally, marketing is the art of effective communication. It’s how you let your prospective customers and clients know about the benefits associated with your product or service, and it’s how you set about reducing the barriers to purchase that may be keeping those prospective customers from spending their money on what you’re offering.
Not only does marketing rely on effectively conveying the particular benefits that you can offer to your client base, but it also involves various techniques and approaches aimed at promoting customer interest and trust in your brand.
Today, in particular, with so many new businesses springing up overnight — and with such a significant amount of scamming also unfortunately going on — showing that your business is “the real deal” is of the utmost importance.
Here are a few ways of promoting customer interest and trust in your brand.
Be as Professional as Possible in Your Branding and Presentation
The first thing that anyone will tend to look at when determining whether or not a given business is trustworthy and authentic, is the way that business presents themselves in terms of their branding, their web design, and a broad range of other factors.
Although it may seem like cutting a few corners here and there wouldn’t do any harm, the reality of the situation is unfortunately very different.
Businesses that have put some real thought and resources into their branding and presentation are essentially signalling to their prospective customer base that — among other things — they have committed financially to the endeavour and are actively trying to draw attention to themselves, in a positive manner.
Ensuring that your logo is on point, that your website is professional and well designed, and that the packaging you are using for your products is of a high quality, are all examples of things that can make a positive impression.
Go Out of Your Way to Amass Reviews and Testimonials
Reviews and testimonials are, far and away, some of the best ways of promoting customer interest and trust in your brand, as they already make your product or service — and your company as a whole — a “known entity,” backed by other customers.
The issue, of course, is that new startups in particular don’t tend to have much in the way of reviews or testimonials — and so are naturally at a significant disadvantage in this regard.
Going out of your way to proactively amass reviews and testimonials at the earliest possible point — perhaps by sending out lots of free “review copies” of your product — can go a very long way in helping to establish credibility for your company, in addition to making you into a real presence in your industry.
Of course, it should go without saying that you should by no means “buy” or fake reviews. Not only are these practices unethical, but people will generally be able to see through what’s going on if a product has 100 nearly identical reviews.
If anything, doing this is likely to burn away any trust and good will that you might otherwise have had.
When displaying reviews, it’s best if you can link those reviews to already trusted third party platforms — such as Amazon — or to for more fleshed out reviews on your site that are along the lines of being case studies, complete with full names, photos, and more.
Ensure That You Price Your Products Appropriately
One of the key things that is likely to generate a significant barrier to the purchase of your products, is if you price those products inappropriately — particularly if you make the price point too high.
While startups and small businesses generally won’t be able to manage the tight margins of major corporations, it’s still important to — among other things — conduct good market research to ensure that you’re pricing appropriately.
Maintain a Clear Awareness of the Purpose of Your Product or Service
From the perspective of your prospective customers, any product or service you offer is a means to an end.
By always maintaining a clear awareness of the purpose your product or service is attempting to achieve for your clients, you can ensure that you consistently emphasise those benefits and generate interest accordingly.