Who do you trust?
By Donna O’Toole
Did you know that TRUST has now become the #2 reason that people buy, beaten to the top of the list only by PRICE.
I get it.
For far too long, our lives have been dominated by fake news, political u-turns, bluffing, blagging and bad behaviour. We’ve heard the good, the bad, and the ugly tell us ‘their truth’ only to get called out for misleading us five minutes later.
This year, people have lost their jobs, their holidays, and their hard-earned money as companies struggled to deliver on their promise and customer experience went out the window.
In the worst cases, responsibility got shifted around, communications became impossible, and small print was activated to protect companies from paying out whilst their customers’ cries for help fell on deaf ears.
Well, enough’s enough. It’s time to go back to basics, it’s time to remember that old adage:
“Actions speak louder than words”
Now more than ever, consumers need to see and feel why they should trust a company with their money, loyalty, and recommendation. And thankfully there are plenty of companies out there who ARE doing the right thing.
And thanks to websites, social media and online review platforms, it doesn’t take long for a consumer to sort the wheat from the chaff when it comes to choosing who to trust to buy from, or who to do business with nowadays.
So what can you do to make sure your next potential customer KNOWS they can trust you?
First and foremost, just do the right thing!
Stick to your word. Act with honesty, compassion and empathy. And look after your employees, because they will only be able to (or want to) look after your customers if you are truly looking after them.
In my recent podcast with Ian Golding, International CX specialist and Chairman of the Customer Experience Awards he explains how you can create an award-winning customer experience if you do this one thing now.
And when it comes to winning awards, I judge hundreds of entries, and direct my team to craft even more every year, and I promise you this: talk is cheap. The companies who can prove that they truly live and breathe their values will always win.
Don’t tell the judges that you are ‘diverse’ – be it!
Don’t tell the judges that you care about your employees’ well-being – show it! (hint: fruit bowls and ping pong tables really don’t prove that point!)
Don’t tell the judges you care about the community/environment/charity – invest in it!
You get the picture.
Be real. Be Fair. Be relatable. Be kind. Be transparent, and you will be trustworthy.
Then SHOW your customers that they can truly trust you by using valuable and visible trust signals on your website and all your marketing materials. Add reviews, up-to-date awards logos, feedback and case studies to make it easy for a potential buyer to see what you are doing well, and you’ll see your business blossom. One of our clients saw his sales rise by 30% within weeks of adding a credible awards logo to his website, because that logo implicitly said ‘You can trust us with your money and your time’ to everyone who saw it!
So if you don’t have recent business awards or don’t know if you’re ready to win, head over to our unique Business Awards Test to find out what you need to do to win today.
Of course trust is also an important factor in entering awards, and in my podcast interviews with the UK’s leading awards organisers you’ll hear me question them, explore their processes and find out exactly how their programmes work, so that you know you can trust them too.
Lastly, thank you for trusting me to bring you honest and open awards advice, it’s been a true pleasure helping to strengthen so many brands to come through 2020 with a renewed sense of pride and achievement.
I can’t wait to see you shine in 2021.
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