We may have an unhealthy obsession with our smart phones, but when it comes to business interactions one thing remains the same: people want to do business with other people. This means we still cringe when we get that automated messaging when calling customer service, and we’re totally not cool with those annoying self check-out lines while shopping. Indeed, one of Forbes’ marketing trends of 2015 states that consumers want more (and expect more) authentic and personalized experiences.
So how does your brand show off its human side? Could you be doing more to highlight your personality and authenticity? Here’s a few tips to highlight the human element of your small biz.
Show Your Flow
It’s all about good vibes, man! Although small business owners have an advantage over the big, less personalized retailers, they still need to pay attention to the entire customer experience–from the moment customers walk into the shop until the last “Thank you” email they receive. Take control of the vibes your small business exudes by thinking about how you want your customers to feel the second they think about your brand. Are you bold and spontaneous; orderly and efficient; or simply a friendly helping hand? The more you pay attention to your overall, personal messaging the more it will seep into your brand and every facet of it, like email marketing and special offers.
Get Snap Happy
To get the personality of your business across, use your smart phone to take regular, spontaneous photos of your team, your customers, and your outside endeavors so that you can post them on social media. Say you are passionate about giving back to the community. Take pictures on your smartphone of the charitable events you sponsor. If your business is a social hub of your community, like a spa, hold a contest where you ask customers to submit selfies of themselves and their friends enjoying a special day at your business. Award a gift certificate to the person who submits the best photo. If you are a solo attorney known for expertise on international law, ask a colleague to snap a photo of you while you are speaking at your next conference, so you can post it. The more you stay alert to these photo opps, the more vibrant and authentic your social media presence will be.
Be Great, Automate
Extending the vibe of your business on a social media site can take some time. To avoid abandoning your efforts after a couple of weeks, automate what you’re doing. Use Yodle to post photos to your website, Facebook page and online directory listings, you can make it much easier. (Watch a quick tutorial here). By freeing yourself from cumbersome tasks through marketing automation, you’ll have more time to spend with customers and keep them coming back.