Build Your Brand and Sales Will Follow
Since the beginning of advertising it has always been about the product. Promote the product, promote the product, promote the product.
Today, with the tremendous volume of ads being forced on shoppers using every trick possible to get the attention on products it is not surprising that savvy shoppers of today blow off anything that looks like someone trying to push a product on them.
So what can a company do to market their products better? More and more businesses have discovered that branding is far more important than it used to be. But with this style of branding the goal is not to promote a product. The goal of this branding is to give the public a good feeling about the company brand and make it memorable.
If people like what they saw and remember your company brand when the time comes to get a product you sell you are more likely to get a sale. I am sure you have seen ads that you cannot tell who created them until the credit at the end of the ad. And the credit is not done in a big way or boastfully because that would be counter productive to the goal of looking like a responsible company only trying to do the right thing.
As a consumer if you need help and a company is there with a free industry support Forum, blog, email or social media posts that helps potential clients out, you will have developed a friendly connection that can grow without pressure. The automotive repair industry does with with DIY posts on how you can do a repair yourself. Once you see how it is done you might decide you cannot attempt this work and there you are looking at someone who does that kind of work who seems very trust worthy. Who would you trust, the person with the free support or someone you don’t know? The key is to be genuine in your effort to help someone. If your efforts are not sincere your savvy audience will resent it and the effect could be negative rather than positive. Think back on how you felt when someone you thought you could trust mislead you. It’s not a good feeling and it could turn you off to that person for a very long time. For that reason it is important you do not have strings attached to any offers of help.
One great example of strings attached to avoid is the free product, service or information if you give them your name, address, email, phone, date of birth and first born. That’s not free! If you use the word “free” there had better be no strings attached or your business will suffer the consequences of those feelings of being scorned. Ten years ago that ploy worked, but today everyone has seen this tactic hundreds of times and today’s response to it is to move on to the next company and anger at the deceitful company.
Let’s say your goal is to collect email addresses. Don’t hide behind some fake offer that causes your prospects to dislike your company. People today know why you want their email address so why not be honest and spell out what you plan to do with their email address. Let them know how much email they will receive and how they can opt-out. Tell them if the email will be shared and if so with whom. You will appear more trust worthy and more people will be likely to share their email address if you are honest and transparent.
Or, as a wise man once said “Do unto others as you would have them to unto you”. I think you’ll find your business will benefit from this methodology.