Do you want to set up a new start-up, win more customers and want to know how to do it? The answer to this question is easier said than done. It is: trust. This does not mean your trust in the customer's wallet, but the customer's trust in your service or goods. You will also notice in the course of this article that trust does not mean an intimate relationship, but the will to entrust your company with an order.
Trust Has To Be Earned
Imagine you run a business that makes doors, gates and windows. Your target group are small to medium-sized industrial companies.
The owner of an office complex needs new windows for the building because the old ones are partially damaged. He doesn't know your company exists. He goes in search of a competent company that will manufacture and install the windows according to his wishes.
How will he begin his quest? In 2022 it can be assumed that he will consult the Internet and a search engine of his choice. Alternatively, every smartphone has a navigation app that can locate companies in the vicinity. This means that the searcher can conveniently and anonymously search for companies that are suitable for him and his order.
With that in mind, let's look at the following ways to establish, grow, and maintain contact and basic trust with this prospect:
- Own website
- References / reviews
- Good customer service
- Social media
The Clean Website
The most important figurehead for your company is its own website. You don't have to hire an expensive website agency either. This is usually not affordable, especially at the beginning of self-employment. However, there are software offers that allow you to put your website together like a construction kit.
In order to create your own website that convinces others of your work and professionalism, there are a few things to consider:
- Pay attention to a clear unambiguous structure. The visitor of your site must find all information quickly
- No spelling or translation errors on the page. These raise doubts about your seriousness in the reader
- Integrate an "About us" page on which you introduce your company, your employees and yourself - with training if you like. So the visitor has the faces and an idea of which people would work on his project
- Make sure to maintain your website and update it regularly. A page that has not been updated for more than 3 years acts as a deterrent as information such as phone numbers may be out of date.
- Make it clear what skills and services your company offers
- Take a self-critical look at the site a few days after you create it and consider whether it seems legitimate
- Read and follow information about "Search Engine Optimization" (SEO) to get your website found by search engines
If you observe these points, you can also create a suitable website for a young company and you have significantly reduced the monthly costs through your own work.
For comparison: A website created with the help of a website construction kit (in addition to your working hours) costs between €9.00 and €39.00 per month on average. If you hire a professional website agency, this will cost you several hundred to several thousand euros, depending on the range of functions. It can therefore be worthwhile to start by designing the first website yourself.
At the same time, you have created THE figurehead with which you practice first customer contact and form the first subconscious links of trust.
Reviews Are Gold
Once the first orders have been completed, you should definitely try to get an objective evaluation of your services from your customers. If you feel that this is suitable for public display, you should embed it on your website. Other interested parties like to use the experiences of your old customers as a criterion for deciding whether they would prefer to hire you or your competition. If you have references that attribute sympathy and good service to you, new customers will give you a sympathy bonus.
That being said, for any of your projects, you can ask your client if you can take photos to use as a reference. Display these images on a medium of your choice (flyers, TV, etc.) in your point of sale or office and upload them to your website. This is how you show which great projects your company has successfully completed so far.
The Customer Is King!
Dating back to 1909, this exaggerated exclamation means that customers will keep coming back to you if you treat them sensibly, listen to their needs, and solve their problems before they even know they have problems. Of course, you don't have to scatter petals on their path.
When it comes to customer service, you want to come across as open and honest as possible. Authentic. Approach your customers in a friendly manner and pull out all the stops to fulfill their wishes. He will thank you by doing business with you again and again. You go beyond the initial trust over time and form a form of intimacy. Incidentally, this is also the way to find long-term partners.
Take Care Of Your Social Media
If you want to be successful in modern times, you will not be able to avoid your own social media channels. An account with Facebook, Twitter and Co. gives you a direct channel to end customers in the consumer sector, while sites such as Xing or LinkedIn enable you to make new business contacts and exchange information with other entrepreneurs.
With a post you can refer to spontaneous offers or events. Pay attention to your choice of words when writing the post. It should sound human but not attack anyone. Avoid technical terms for good readability and suggest that you are on an equal footing with the customer.
Social media channels have to be maintained regularly, even more often than your own website. Since it is your mouthpiece to the masses of your customers and partners, it also requires some PR marketing skills. If you accidentally unleash one shitstorm after the other, your basis of trust will quickly turn into a basis of distrust, which is exactly the opposite of what you wanted to achieve.
At first glance, it seems a bit complicated to win the trust of your own customers. Especially at the beginning of a business start-up, there is a lot of work to present your image to the outside world.
Take one step at a time. Start with a website. Give yourself enough time with the design process to make an impact. Once a few months have passed, you can slowly create one social media channel after the other and practice PR marketing.
Offer your customers good service and ask them what they think of your work. This is your key to a large customer base.
There are other ways to create a basis of trust with customers. Company parties, imaginative customer gifts, content marketing, etc. These tools give you opportunities to interact with the customer. This generates sympathy and trust.
PS: Are you in the process of founding a company or do you want to expand your portfolio with a new product or service? Then you should definitely take a look at the Business Generator.