The Power of a Friendly Brand
In the past an authoritative voice had the power to drive sales. Those of us above 35 all remember “4 out of 5 dentists recommend Trident for patients that chew gum.” The advent and popularization of social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram have changed the way companies communicate their brand message. Now, the most successful brands are the ones who get “friendly” with their audience. Consumers want to see photos of the faces behind the brands, they want stories that inspire, and they want brands that give back. If you aren’t communicating in this way, you are probably losing out on a large part of your market share. Here are 5 tips on how to get friendlier with your customers and future customers:
1. Have a plan
You need to devise a comprehensive marketing and public relations strategy. Plan out your goals, how you want the company voice to feel and sound, and who are the faces of the brand.
2. Use social media
There are so many social media avenues available to reach customers in a seemingly one-on-one manner. Decide on which ones best suit your company needs and then go for them full-force. Don’t spread yourself too thin and then not monitor or interact on those avenues or you will lose the value of your efforts.
3. Encourage earned media
Studies show that people value “earned media” as much as paid media and see this as real. Have people like your message, share, post, rate, etc.
4. Form mutually beneficial partnerships
Align yourself with strategic business alliances. These alliances can help you get your product in front of new audiences and will help you look like you are a community friendly company.
5. Keep interacting
This is an on-going relationship with your audience. While you might revise the marketing plan to keep it fresh, consistency is the key. We suggest having an in-house staff member dedicated to interactions and public relations or hire it out (often the more cost-effective option). But make sure, you have eyes and ears out there daily.
Make your brand’s PR and marketing goal for the year very clear: Get real and get friendly. If you consciously make your company’s brand approachable, the viral impact will be well worth the effort it takes.