What is Authentic Marketing and What it Means for Small Businesses
More than ever, today’s small businesses are becoming an open book to consumers, and in order for those potential customers to buy into your company, you need to show them how genuine your company is, and you need to allow them to get to know the human side of your business. By welcoming customers into your world and humanizing the company-customer relationship, you can be much more authentic to them, and your brand can become much more memorable. So how do you go about this process? Here are some suggestions.
Present Yourself Consistently
If you present conflicting or confusing images of your company to consumers, chances are none of those images will register at all. On the other hand, if you consistently present a synchronized set of messages, or even better a story that resonates with consumers, you can implant a clear image of your company in their minds, and have it stick.
Today’s customers are a bit more sophisticated than they might have been in the past, and they don’t want to hear only about what your products or services are, and what features they have. Consumers today want to know why they should do business with you in the first place, what your history is, and what you stand for. They want authenticity from you.
Tell Your Company’s Story
Yes, it’s still about products, and how they perform, and how they fill a need that the customer has. But today, it’s also about you and your business. Customers almost feel entitled to know what your story is before they choose to do business with you, because there are probably several competitors who have a compelling business story, if you don’t.
There are any number of channels by which you can disseminate this story to your target audience: celebrity endorsers, social media, website blogs and videos, etc. – but which ever channels you do use, you need to take the consumer inside your world to show them what your company is all about, how it makes those great products, the kind of values that drive your company, and lastly, that the consumer is a very important part of your extended family.
Don’t be Afraid of Creativity
Predictable, unexciting messages don’t score well with today’s consumers, because they sound too much like canned routines that could have been passed around by companies for decades, and they don’t seem genuine. On the other hand, by making your message a little wild or over the top, you can come across more like a real person, and not so much like a big corporation with a professional content writer behind the scenes, who’s just cranking out prose.
It really is all about authenticity today – but don’t fall into the trap of thinking it’s what seems authentic to you. As always, it’s all about the customer and the customer’s perception. So make sure that anything you do in your marketing and advertising strategies comes across as authentic to your target audience, even if you have to setup mini-test audiences to poll them for their reactions. A misstep can be costly – just as an authentic representation of your company can really hit a home run with your target audience. Contact Us today to learn more!