Identifying the customer base
Building a dialogue with customers
Whatever business is out there they all have a story to tell, whether it is how they came about , why they decided to start the business or maybe it was a passion they decided to turn into a growing business.
Everyone likes a good story and the emotions behind them and by understanding others thoughts and emotions we are able to connect with our target audience. Through connections we can build relationships and trust, which eventually leads to loyal paying customers.
Your brand story defines the purpose of your company to the customer and your staff. It states who you are and what your principles are and sets the platform for the interaction with your customers both in store and online.
How to build a Brand Story
Ask yourself what is the WHY behind what you do. It may be good customer service or high quality products. For example ask yourself :
- What is our mission
- Why do we exist
- What is our motivation
Having created your story it is time to apply it to all areas of your business. Every action is important and should result into an interaction with your target audience in order to bring it to life. It was once said,
‘If the brand cannot cleanly and clearly communicate its message and what it stands for in one sentence, or with one glance at a logo, it has failed conclusively.’
Therefore its worth considering keeping your story simple and to the point, as well as making it engaging and amusing. Keep it real and authentic, after all it’s your story. Show your passion and relate to the trials and tribulations of getting to where you are today. This will show your human side and evoke a true following. Don’t fake it. You will be found out, why would you base your business on this premise?
Identify your customer base
Preparation is the key in any business so researching who your target audience is, is an integral part of your marketing strategy.
Researching your competitors customer base will show you where they are utilising their social media and other marketing platforms. By understanding their customer base should help you identify where you could improve and get ahead of the competition.
A few areas you could explore before you target your potential audience are :
- What are they buying
- Where are they buying
- Where geographically residing
- Social interests /hobbies
- Are they on social media. If so what influences them
- Age demographics
Researching these areas will help narrow down where to target your potential audience.
If your on social media you may think that you are building brand awareness, but are you using it effectively? If you are not getting your brand in front of the right people, it is not being effective.
The right way will drive traffic to your website and creates engagement thus strengthening your brand. How do you get your social media platform to be effective?
Consider being human and share your experiences on an emotional level and enter into conversations to draw out customers insights. Talk with your audience not AT them and talk on a personal level which will reflect your brands identity as being friendly and human.
Brands follow a ratio of the 70/ 20/10 rule when posting on social media which is adding value and building your brand 70% of the time, sharing posts and ideas 20% of the time and promoting your business and brand 10% of the time. This will attract people back to your brand as you have given them a reason to return.
This is the value you promise to deliver to your customers after the sale has taken place. It what makes the product attractive. So what elements constitute a good value proposition?
- It’s exclusive, it sets you apart from your competitors
- How will it solve the customers problems or improve their life
- What are the specific benefits which will help the customer
Your value proposition should only be 2 -3 short sentences and every word should be clear and make the message more convincing and meaningful.
Driving sales is not always about getting people to visit your site, there are other tactics you can share.
One being sending free samples to Instagram influencers. A recent study showed that Instagram gives brands 25% more engagement than other social media platforms. It also drives traffic and awareness to your store if you know how to engage with influencers.
Another method is to connect with bloggers and the press. Some of these platforms have large audiences and followings. Google is a good source for this.
Keywords are a good way to guide people to your business which can be used in SEO’s and videos. There is an industry employing part timers to review products on video so this has become an important factor to drive sales to your business, so make your keywords unique and relative to your business.
Writing blog posts about people with large audiences is effective. Rather than waiting for them to reach out to you, by sending a sample, write about them and send the blog to them via social media platforms or direct by email.
Show that you are serious and connect with influencers and take charge. Write engaging and informative content and create your own following and become an influencer.