This blog post is the third in our series of key takeaways from the keynotes and breakout sessions from the 2017 PowerReviews Digital Commerce Summit.
Last month, PowerReviews hosted our first annual Digital Commerce Summit in Chicago. The theme of the event was the Transparency Economy, and we kicked things off on the first day with a keynote discussing the role of information and opinion in culture and commerce.
One of the keynote speakers was Paul Rand, president and CEO of Zócalo Group and author of Highly Recommended. During his portion of the keynote session, Paul discussed how earned media, such as recommendations from family and friends, is trusted above all other form of advertising. And recommendations now extend to online reviews.
What can you do to become a brand that consumers will recommend to their family, friends and even strangers? Paul shared the following six tips for becoming a highly recommended brand.
1. Develop a clear and purposeful story of how you want people to talk about and recommend your brand.
When consumers talk about your brand, what do you want them to say? The answer to this question should inform everything you do.
2. Live your brand.
Practice what you preach. For example, if you’re an organization that touts your focus on customer service, but shoppers actually have terrible experiences when shopping with you, you’ll lose credibility.
3. Be human, transparent and live up to mistakes quickly.
There’s not an organization in the world that doesn’t make mistakes from time to time. When you make a mistake, own up to it quickly. If you try to cover up mistakes, people will find out. And when they do, you’ll lose the trust you’ve worked hard to build.
4. Stay engaging and interesting.
Consumers don’t want to engage with brands that are constantly talking about themselves. Follow the 90/10 rule. Spend 90% of the time listening and engaging with your consumers about things that matter to them. Then, spend the remaining 10% of time talking about your brand and your products.
5. Regularly evaluate and evolve — but stay true to your core.
The ecommerce landscape — and customer expectations — are constantly changing and evolving. Take time to regularly assess what you’re doing well, and what you should change in order to keep up in an increasingly competitive landscape and better meet the needs of your shoppers.
6. Structure and manage to be recommendable from the ground up.
Becoming a highly recommendable company isn’t the job of just one team. Instead, every department plays a role — from human resources and customer service to marketing and sales. Make customer service a focus for your entire organization. If a shopper has a negative experience with a member of your team, they’re obviously much less likely to recommend your brand or products.
What is your business doing to become highly recommended?