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Consumers are inundated with claims on their attention, time, and money. We’re tired of brand impressions everywhere we turn, and we crave something different. What works right now for consumers in our crowded marketplace?
Authenticity. Surprising, isn’t it? What’s most effective is providing great value to customers who feel invested in your success. Here’s what you need to know about making an authentic connection with your customers and transforming them into your biggest fans.
- Tell your story. Customers want to support ordinary people, folks they can relate to, and it’s your job to convey your tale in a compelling way. Hint – you may need help here … that’s what great marketing companies can help with. Whether you tell your rags-to-riches saga, or whether you detail your unorthodox approach to success, you need to define what sets you apart from the crowd – that’s your message, your story.
- Use the phoenix effect. They mythical phoenix is consumed by flames and reborn from the ashes. We love to hear tales about someone who manages to start fresh, overcoming adversity, to make it big. Part of telling your story should convey the unique challenges you’ve faced.
- Don’t start a pity party. You don’t want customers to buy from you just because they feel sorry for you, so it’s important to cast your story – even if it includes difficulties – in a positive light. Don’t spend too much time whining about how hard it was; focus, instead, on how far you’ve come. Tell your customers how proud you are of your hard work and achievements.
- Don’t brag. You do not want to make prospective customers envious of your success. Take Donald Trump as an example. We may admire some of his success, and we may even choose to adopt some of his business practices, but I don’t know anyone who’s dying to fork over their hard-earned money simply to enrich The Donald. You don’t want to flaunt your success. You want to earn loyal supporters.
- Have an enemy. Whether it’s the huge, soulless corporation that you’re struggling to compete with, or whether it’s rigid, outdated practices you’re revolutionizing, people love to root for the underdog. As part of your narrative, you need to situate your business in a context – give your clients a reason to invest in your success.
- Be part of your community. If you could choose to spend your money with a big company who spirits the profits to somewhere on the other side of the world or with a small company who reinvests in the local community, which would it be? No contest, right. Make sure you share the good work you’re doing to make your town or neighborhood a better place to live and work.
Authentic marketing is a refreshing, revolutionary approach, and one that shows no signs of going away. We’re tired of overblown, high-pressure sales tactics, and we crave a real connection with the companies we choose to do business with. Make sure you take the time to share your unique vision, journey, and mission with your customers.