Establishing trust with your audience through authentic, audience-driven content marketing is the key to long-lasting business relationships.
Consumer trust in your business is what makes you stand out from the pack. Customers increasingly make purchasing decisions based on knowing where and who their products and services come from. They want to connect with the brands whose values they share, and a good majority of people still look to business to lead change. Troublingly however, the Edelman Trust Barometer has reported for the past two years that just 52 per cent of people trust businesses to do what is right.
In order to gain the trust of your audience, you have to build bridges: frequently, creatively and authentically. A content strategy designed and dispatched around creating genuine, meaningful relationships with your consumers is a great place to start.
What do those relationships look like? Maybe it’s the always funny, occasionally sassy Twitter feed of fast-food chain Wendy’s, whose frequent social interactions with fans of the brand skyrocketed their profits by nearly 50 per cent between 2016 and 2017. Or, perhaps it’s leveraging your owner’s story and image. Burt’s Bees did this by channeling its founder’s desire to talk to the bees he kept with a series of brilliantly weird short films directed and acted in by Isabella Rossellini.
Canadian businesses also show that a trust-building strategy is key to success: take Well.ca, Canada’s largest health and wellness ecommerce property. Well.ca’s success is attributed to pairing seamless online shopping with highly personalized touches: as personal as a handwritten note on every invoice. Their strategy of making digital experiences unique has led to 40 per cent growth, year over year.
In all of the above examples, their content – social, video and web – is expertly produced and engaging. Most important, they are completely informed by each brand’s values. How can you tell? Imagine a snarky Wendy’s Tweet coming from Well.ca – it wouldn’t fit with providing safe, natural products for families. These success stories offer no one-size-fits-all approach other than making your content authentic to your company – your consumers will quickly sniff out when it’s not.
Building a content strategy based around long-lasting relationships with your audience is a proactive step in making trust a cornerstone of your business. Adding authentic, story-driven content to your marketing means that the next time trust swings toward the negative for business, you’ll be the outlier, not the example.