Don’t worry about getting your first one hundred customers. Worry about getting your first five and serving them really well.
My biggest advice to any ambitious new business owner is to concentrate on reputation first. It takes time to build a reputation and whether you focus on it or not, it’s going to form. Better to be in the driver’s seat, if you ask me.
Growing a business takes time, effort, money, resilience and, honestly, a phenomenal reputation. When you put your focus on simply building sales and gaining more customers, it’s easy to let reputation building fall to the wayside when it really deserves to be front and center.
Whether you’re just getting your feet wet in your business or have been at it awhile, here are three important reasons to focus on building your brand’s reputation.
#1 Build Trust
We grow up being reminded that what other people think doesn’t matter, but unfortunately, when your business is concerned, it matters quite a lot. At least, the opinions of your customers and future customers matter. Focusing on your brand’s reputation and how to build it in a positive way will help you to create and instill trust with your audience. Think about it, when you head to purchase something from Amazon, what do you typically do first? You look at customer reviews to make yourself feel more certain of your purchase. Your brand’s reputation should help people trust that they can count on you and that the investment of purchasing from you and working with you is worth it!
#2 Create Comfort
Think about the leather recliners in a movie theater; you don’t think twice about sitting for hours watching a film because you’re comfortable. When you begin to concentrate on creating content for your business, sharing marketing assets or posting customer reviews, for instance, you’re helping create brand awareness and setting the tone of your brand. How can you create a sense of comfort, familiarity and therefore consistency for your audience? Are you showing up to serve your customers with the same level of service and enthusiasm? Does your brand hold the same personality on and offline when customers interact with you? Your brand reputation should strive to maintain a consistency in how it shows up to create that sense of comfort, whether customers are currently working with you or will in the future.
#3 Stay Top of Mind
Small business owners are notorious for experiencing anxiety over the ups and downs that entrepreneurship can often bring. A huge factor in brand reputation is that it’s one of the greatest determining factors for returning business as well as referrals. Once you land a customer or make a sale, that is only the beginning of the relationship! By serving your customers well, creating impact, and adding unexpected value, that brand reputation will become the tool in your business that keeps you top of mind the next time you’re needed! Implementing ways to create value within your content and finding opportunities to speak directly to the things your target market wants and needs may not always show results in the immediate present, but keep the connection going and growing! When you build a brand reputation that people know, like and trust, you will stay top of mind!
Hustle & Heart Challenge
This month, set a timer for 5 minutes and think about your current brand reputation. What do you think customers would say about your business to a friend? Where are there opportunities to improve? What area are you truly proud of and want more people to learn about? Intentionally choose 2 ways you’re going to focus this month on building your brand reputation in ways that matter to your target audience.