Your business reputation makes its way into every facet of your business’s existence. It both impacts and is impacted by the way people read your emails, interpret your social media posts, talk to others about your business, and more. This is why reputation is so important in business, and why it is your responsibility to exercise the aspects of reputation building that are in your control. This post will guide you through steps you can take to strengthen your company’s reputation.
Elements of a Strong Business Reputation
There are many factors that affect your business reputation—both online and off. Some are in your control, others are in the hands of others. Below is a list of factors which are in your control, and some steps you can take in each area to strengthen your company’s reputation.
High Quality Products/Services
Your products and services are one of the strongest components of your company’s reputation. They will impact your image in the eyes of others based upon how well they solve the problems that your target audience has, how innovative they are, and their level of quality. The better your products and services are, the more they will be used, and the more others in your community will see them being used.
A Positive Customer Experience
It’s not just the products and services that give your company a good reputation. It’s the delivery of those products and services, and the experience they create for the customer. You may have top notch product, but if you deliver it in an impersonal or colorless way, you won’t create much of an impact. Putting thought and effort into ensuring a great experience for your customers will boost your business reputation more than just ensuring a great product.
Share Your Expertise
The quality of your products and services is a direct result of your expertise in your field. However, you shouldn’t limit the recipients of your helpful knowledge to just your paying customers. Strengthen your company’s reputation by sharing your knowledge. Provide useful information on your website, your business blog, and social media to show that you are not just focused on getting more customers, but on being a trusted resource. A business that stays up to date on the latest in its industry strengthens its reputation in that it is proactive, and considers it a responsibility, and not just a perk, to be of value to its audience.
Show Your Confidence
Confidence is one of the simplest yet most effective ways to bolster your company’s reputation. People who are utilizing your products and services to achieve something are doing so because they lack the knowledge or ability to achieve it on their own. They have to trust that you will identify and provide for them what they need. You’d be surprised at what minor behaviors or words your customers will pick up on. Strengthen your company’s reputation by being clear, decisive, and positive in your interactions with customers. When you are confident in your business, they feel confident in their decision to choose you over your competitors.
Showcase Your Culture
Just as it’s important to see the people behind your customers, it is important for your customers to see the people behind your business. The way that you interact with your coworkers, the attitude with which they carry out their work, and the level of satisfaction they show are a direct contributor to your company’s reputation. This is first because humanizing your business allows people to relate more with it and form proper opinions; second because a happy and thriving office culture is a sign of a healthy business with good leadership; and third, a business that treats its employees well is likely to treat its customers well too.
Nurture Your Relationships
Your relationships with your customers is just one of many relationships that play a part in your company’s reputation. People will gather information about your business based upon how you conduct relationships with everyone—members of the community, neighboring businesses, competitors, loyal customers, customers of competitors, and people with no interest in your business at all. Reputation management doesn’t pause after hours, it is constantly happening in all of your interactions. To strengthen your business reputation, focus on serving and helping the people around you, all the time.
Provide Good Customer Service
Although your business reputation is affected by all of your relationships, your engagement with your customers should be prioritized. The speed and professionalism with which you deliver your services, the help you provide after their purchase, and the engagement you maintain with them over time is crucial to the strength of your company’s reputation. Thorough efforts in customer acquisition, service, and follow up will earn a positive image in the eyes of others and distinguish your business from competitors.
Go the Extra Mile
A mediocre or typical experience with your business doesn’t give a person anything worth sharing with others. A notable experience, however, gives them something valuable or interesting to share with others.Strengthen your business reputation by going the extra mile. Learn your customers’ names, make special accommodations for them, check in with them from time to time. Go one step further than they’d expect you to go. Note that t is important to be consistent and realistic here. Make sure that your extra mile efforts are those which you can perform somewhat consistently and for many customers; not just every once in awhile or for one. You don’t want to create an expectation that you can’t uphold, or favor some customers over others.
Strengthening your company’s reputation doesn’t require extravagant measures. It’s about seizing the opportunities provided by your daily activities to make the community around you better.