Consumers expect more of your company than they used to. Competition is fierce. That's why your call center must maintain brand trust to increase sales. Brand trust must be earned, but you can take steps to improve your reputation and help build that bond with your customers. And you should begin now.
The Importance of Brand Trust
Your company faces increasing competition in modern markets, so setting your brand apart from competitors is essential to your success. Your product has to appeal to a wide segment of consumers who are more cautious now than before. Your reputation for quality will attract their business, and your service will keep it. But this brand reputation is not enough. It will get you consumer loyalty, but that loyalty will be short-lived if it doesn't include trust. Consumers have to know that your brand consistently delivers on its promises and takes their needs into consideration.
Consumers are more likely to stay loyal to brands that have good reputations. You can find this effect in something as simple as a breakfast cereal. If your corn flakes are consistently fresh, reasonably priced and taste good, consumers will stay loyal to your brand from childhood through adulthood. Plus, they will recommend it to others. It would take something significant to break their trust.
A good brand reputation translates into sales, and research has consistently shown the benefits of a good brand reputation as well. Typically, having one will influence consumers to:
- Buy your products first
- Remain loyal to your company
- Recommend your products to others
- Defend your brand from criticism
Brand trust is one of your company's greatest assets. With it, you can thrive in good markets and survive during bad ones.
Factors that Influence Brand Trust
Since brand trust is so important, you need to actively work to develop it among your customer base. First, though, you should study the factors that influence brand trust. And while these can vary by industry, demographics and geographic region, the most common influencers of trust are:
- Reliable product or service - If you build it, they will come. Your best way to create brand trust is to offer a superior product.
- Positive reviews - When your current customers rank you highly, they influence others to have trust in your product.
- Fair price for quality - Consumers go back to these products again and again because they are affordable and consistently good.
- Ethical corporate practices - Consumers consider your bad behavior as a smear on their judgment. Set a high standard, and they will stick with you.
Take proactive steps to cultivate brand trust, and it will repay you tenfold.
Correlation to Telemarketing
Telemarketing is all about building relationships. Whether this is "business to business" or "business to consumer," trust must be established before a relationship can flourish.
Often, telemarketers have more resistance to overcome when establishing brand trust, due to destructive bad actors in the industry. That's why ethical dialing practices are the first step in building trust for your company.
Abide by Compliance Regulations
Practicing compliance with the law is a no brainer. Consumers are better informed than they used to be, and they can quickly spot shady practices. And right now, the general public has little patience for tricksters.
The FTC’s Telemarketing Sales Rule and National DNC Registry are laws for all telemarketing sales operations to follow. Recently the passage of the TRACED and DART Acts set further standards to combat call spoofing and robocalls.
While you may experience some difficulty during this transition period, including being falsely labeled a scam, you must hang in there and follow the new regulations to the letter. You will emerge from the confusion with your reputation intact.
Train Agents Often and Thoroughly
Your agents are the voice of your company. They must have the right tools to achieve success, and that includes ongoing training that addresses the frequent changes in FCC regulations and industry guidance. Once a year sessions simply are not enough to prepare your employees.
Training is one of the best tools for any calling agent. You should ensure they are completely familiar with your services and understand how to address any negative feedback appropriately. When a customer starts arguing, your agents have to remain calm and professional. Politeness can set your brand apart even if your services do not fit the customer's needs.
Respect Your Customers
Telemarketers do become frustrated. They often face an avalanche of "nos" before they hear a single "yes." But no matter how much rejection they face, your agents must retain their respect for the customer if they want to cultivate trust. For instance, if a prospect is busy, respect their time. Schedule a call back at a time that suits them better and then follow through. Trust and respect go hand in hand.
Monitor Your Reputation
To maintain your reputation, you must continually monitor it. Discover and address problems early and directly.
Your company could be the victim of call spoofing, for example, and knowing early can prevent damage to your customer relationships. You can promptly relay an appropriate response that includes informing your customers about what really occurred. You can then instruct them on how to spot scammers and urge them to report any suspicious activity to you.
Vigilance is your number one weapon against spoofing or being labeled a robocaller.
The Power of Your Caller ID
Your caller ID is your first impression to the world. Your leads will judge your trustworthiness largely by what comes up on their phones when you call. If it is "scam likely" or "spam risk," they will not answer and likely block the number to prevent further disruptions. One bad call can lose you that customer for good.
With so much at risk these days, consumers are eager to feel safe in all their transactions. They need to feel comfortable doing business with your company. When your caller ID consistently shows your business name to a consumer, they will be more likely to trust you. They will know that you are monitoring your numbers and protecting them from scammers and other illegal operations.
Brand trust costs you little to cultivate outside of hard work and vigilance. You may be a victim of spoofing, but your consumers won't know that unless you take action. Once a consumer develops trust for your brand, they will stick with you through good economic times and bad. Even better - they will spread the word.