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Social Media Can Be A “Footer” For Building Trust

Previously in this space, the concept of building a business on the basis of trust has been discussed. The recent economic distress has increased the importance of trust as a basis for growing and sustaining a company. This is especially true if you are in a relationship business, whether or nor it involves recurring revenue. Even companies that see themselves in a transaction business know they will not get repeat business if they cannot be trusted. So what are the things companies can do to establish and build trust with their prospects and customers? They can clearly communicate and meet expectations and be better than their competitors at fixing problems of unmet expectations. They can teach customers how to get the most benefit from the products and services they provide. And, they can impart useful information to the market, whether or not the delivery of that information is directly connected to revenue. Here is where on-line social media like LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinster and a host of other social media programs come in. Whether you like it or not, your business has an on-line reputation. You need to manage that reputation and deal with any negative postings promptly and fairly. You need to follow the etiquette of social media-to be helpful but not pushy and “salesy.” Participate in appropriate discussion groups where you establish your company as a thought leader. If you have ever built a house or have watched one being built, the first, basic foundation is often a set of concrete “footers” on which the house rests. To help build and sustain your company’s positive reputation and the trust that reputation generates among customers and prospects you have not yet met, have a strong social media strategy with someone directly in charge of its success.