If you were to look for a definition of reputation, you’d find out that we are talking about the amalgam of what you do, and what others have to say about you. Surprisingly enough, there are a lot of people who think that you shouldn’t pay attention to this important quality and that you should just do your thing. That’s nonsense, especially in the world of business. If you don’t do your best to maintain your good name, there’s no money, marketing, or PR wizardry that will keep your business afloat. So, let’s take a look at a couple of ways you can build your reputation and set your business on the path towards a stable and successful future.
Focus on the things that matter
The current business playing field is noisy and crowded. The key to standing out in such an environment is finding some core values you’ll embrace and some niche where you’ll thrive. If you want to grow, you will have to branch out and leave your comfort zone. However, don’t do that at the expense of those core values. The power of strong brands lies in consistency. For example, Coca-Cola stands for family. Apple stands for innovation. Identify the values that are the core of your business and put them in the focus of your efforts.
Keep the promises
Of course, all of the things we mentioned above will amount to virtually nothing if you don’t deliver on the promises you’ve made. There’s no bigger disappointment than discovering that the awesome set of features or fast and reliable service you’ve been promised is actually a dud. But, this doesn’t apply only to the big ideas and product launches. You have to keep the same level of trustworthiness even when it comes to smaller projects. If you promise your customer that you’ll send the invoice by five, send it by five.
Exceed the expectations
Or why not even by four? Everybody likes to be pleasantly surprised. Do that frequently and you will earn a status of a business that goes out of its way to please its customers. And now, it’s time to turn the tables and bring this issue to the macro level. Striving to outdo the competition, offering an interesting value proposition even when you are not expected to do so, and constantly implementing new technologies will easily make you a leader in your niche and let you set the pace of the race.
Make your customers feel secure
Especially if you are running a retail business. Your customers need to know that their money is well invested and that, if something goes wrong, they’ll be properly compensated. You can do that in a number of different ways. For instance, you can offer your customers a sufficient and meaningful warranty. Or, you can give the customers an option of signing a surety bond that will put the agreed deal into a legally binding form. Either way, the more trustworthy you appear, the better.
Pay attention to how you look
This goes for both you and your business. Generally speaking, customers put more trust in people and establishments that look well. Granted, the first impression can often be deceiving and as we all know, not everything that glitters is gold, but the way you are going to build upon a positive first impression is up to you. For a start, just make sure that you do make that positive impression.
Lying can get you out of a number of unpleasant situations, but it won’t do your overall reputation any good even if you manage to squeeze out a couple of short term benefits. That is why it is best to be aware of your shortcomings and be honest about them to a fault. Such honesty will disarm your opponents and give your followers something to hold on to even when you are not delivering results in other areas.
Play a role in the local community
The bigger the role, the better. If you manage to take the lead in the local community, you are doing a small PR wonder. It is very important that people see you as one of them, instead of a person/establishment only interested in robbing them of their money. So, let the locals know that you are not looking at the community simply as your customer pool, and feel the benefits of your business doing well. They will be much more motivated to stand behind you.
These were some of the simple ways to make a good impression on your customers. By following these tips, you will lay the foundation for something that will, with enough care, eventually become a solid reputation and keep your business afloat even when you hit a rough patch. Remember, a good name is the biggest asset one business can ever hope to acquire.
My name is Alex Williams. I am a journalism graduate, and a rookie blogger trying to find my luck. Blogs are the perfect opportunity for presenting yourself to wider audience, getting the chance to showcase my expertise and receiving recognition. I am a regular contributor at Bizzmark Blog “http://bizzmarkblog.com”.