Competition is fierce nowadays, as more and more businesses are being opened and demanding attention. In a world saturated with companies and their ads, consumers are experiencing what experts refer to as “digital marketing fatigue.”
People are tuning out as a result.
Small and medium-size companies cannot expect to compete with the big brands and their equally massive marketing budgets. To survive and thrive in their respective industries, smaller brands have to think of alternative strategies for their audiences to notice them. Here, building customer relationships is the way to go.
This is not the same as creating content that aims to get likes, views, or shares. Developing strong relationships with your customers goes beyond that. It involves knowing your customers intimately, understanding what your market wants, and even incorporating your audience in how you craft your content.
What you are trying to build is a relationship that is not unidirectional. It’s all about encouraging engagement by maintaining a dialog. Want to know how?
Experts from a branding company in Dubai share their insights on how you can build your brand by building your relationships.
Listen to your customers
Marketing strategies are traditionally designed around simply promoting products or services to increase the bottom line. The hard sell strategy no longer works with today’s crowd. If you want your brand to be successful, you need to stay flexible.
Create guides and content that help people make wiser choices. At the same time, listen to what people have to say.
Collect data from your customers, whether they are leads, first-time buyers, or loyal consumers. Analyze the data to see which areas need tweaking. The data can also be used as a basis for creating future content.
Be on the lookout for reviews and feedback. It can be taken directly from your customers or by listening to what people have to say online. You can use the data to modify and improve, not just your products and services, but your marketing campaigns, as well.
Perhaps your audience responds more to charts or infographics. By collecting data, analyzing it carefully, and listening to what your market has to say, you can build a deeper relationship with your audience.
Speak their language
The use of jargon has often been discouraged as it can alienate some members of your target market. However, using the same (jargon) language as your audience can be beneficial for brands trying to connect with a specific group. When used correctly, it shows that your brand is relatable and has a deep understanding of its customers.
In 2015, for instance, Chevy took a calculated risk by creating a news release that consisted only of emojis. With a single press release, Chevy made the brand appear more fun and relatable. They directed this strategy toward younger buyers who are technologically-savvy.
The language used to target young adults would have had to be significantly different if they were trying to appeal to seniors. For the elderly, a more detailed explanation as to how the product works and how it will improve their life would be better appreciated than the use of hip phrases. The use of more straightforward language supported by charts and hard evidence is another effective method for targeting the adult set.
Feature your customers
In commercial photography, it is natural to highlight the best features of your product or whatever it is you are offering to the public. You want smooth, clean surfaces, a streamlined design, and so on. But when the ad involves people, there is now a shift, from celebrities and supermodels to everyday people.
The days of using beautiful models, well-known personalities, or even stereotypical characters in ads are over. To make your brand relatable, your customers need to be able to imagine themselves using your products or services. This requires putting your customers in the spotlight.
Even some of the biggest brands are taking this shift in stride. You may have seen ads from Dove that showcase regular people, those you would not expect to work as models. Some brands, such as Gap, have even actively asked people to submit photos of their kids and feature their images as part of their marketing strategy.
Alternatively, Apple has aired ads that featured photos taken by customers using their iPhone. The names of the contributors are included, which is intended to make participants feel appreciated. At the same time, it gives potential customers a taste of what they can accomplish – not from the standpoint of a professional photographer, but other regular individuals.
Provide personalized services
People don’t just want to be pampered; they want to be acknowledged as individuals with unique preferences.
In high-end boutiques and fine dining restaurants, you may have experienced staff greeting you by name and knowing what you want. To build brand loyalty and a relationship with your customers, your objective should be to provide the same level of personalized service.
There are many ways you can do this with an e-commerce site. For instance, with their approval, you can gather data about your customers and use it to improve future purchasing sessions. The data can be used to create customized newsletters, or so you can recommend items that coincide with their preferences.
Effective branding takes time, effort, and resources. Contact a reputable branding agency in your local area today to get your brand noticed and develop a strong relationship with your customers.
Stuart Harris is the Creative Director at Yellow, a Dubai branding agency, digital partner and advertising company working with progressive businesses to build bold, meaningful brands.