Trust is an essential component in the success of any business. It's key to converting a prospect into a lead and turning a lead into a satisfied customer. When you are operating an online-only business in a high-ticket market, it becomes the single most important consideration.
For Carspring, this high ticket is a car, which, on average, is the second largest lifetime investment a customer will make after buying a home. Carspring launched in Spring 2015 and its main focus has been on building trust through transparency. Reaching that take-off point is dependent on building trusting relationships with customers.
Trust starts with a strong brand
This is undoubtedly a marketing cliché but a unique visual feel and voice helps guide people to the product you sell. Without a strong brand, people can't remember you and they'll struggle to trust you. All the usual suspects apply here: a great image, an emotional connection, brand consistency, reciprocal consumer relationships and memorable messages.
Conquer the customer journey
This is all about communication. Every single one of your consumer interactions has to help with establishing trust, whether it's a transactional email, your customer service team or your website.
Most importantly, it has to stay human. It has to feel like a personal one-to-one interaction. And if your product has a long research phase, great content that informs customers and institutes expertise in your brand is really crucial. FAQs and a blog, for example, help you reach your target audience early on in the purchasing journey.
Focus on your market's weakness and turn it to your advantage
An online business that sells high-ticket items has to work that bit harder to convince people to complete a purchase with you. One way of doing this is by creating some great USPs that go above and beyond those of the traditional offline players.
Network and build partnerships
There's nothing more powerful than forging partnerships with big players. Being able to use a known brand to leverage your own business gives your brand legitimacy and credibility. Take a look at your wider market - are there any established brands that you can partner with? If so, try approaching them with ideas about how both of you can benefit from such a relationship.
Great PR is critical
PR is an essential tool for building trust, especially when you get positive mentions in reputable publications. When you receive recommendations from reliable sources, this builds belief in your brand. One big media mention can be more influential than multiple exposures across lesser-known titles. And, thanks to Google, this coverage is often discoverable when people search for your brand, giving your name a valuable stamp of approval.
Use customer feedback
There are an ever-increasing number of channels for customers to provide feedback. Facebook, TrustPilot and others are key in making your brand appear real and genuine. Customers love reading about other people's experiences. Shout great reviews from the rooftops, tackle negative comments head-on and use every bit of feedback you get for FAQs. It shows that you are a brand that listens and learns.
Sponsored post: copyright © 2016 Selin Burt, Carspring.
Related articles and resources
You may find the following articles and resources useful:
- How do you market an expensive item?
- I'm a small business - why do I need a brand?
- Knowing your customers