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Transparency, honesty, and authenticity aren’t just “marketing speak.” They’re must-have brand values that genuinely matter to today’s CPG buyers. Cohn & Wolfe research indicates that 87% of modern customers want their brands to “act with integrity at all times.” Compared to just 72% of customers who prioritize product innovation, it’s clear that trust factors are a key consideration.
Pure Branding is the act of creating a CPG brand that’s based on honesty and transparency. It’s about developing marketing communications and packaging that define your true ingredients and value to your customers. It’s about doing the right thing by your customers. AdWeek recommends that organizations run an “authenticity audit” test by their existing brand. If true information about your products or suppliers leaked, would it damage your brand? If the answer is yes, it may be worthwhile to consider improving your transparency.
For CPG brands who are hoping to increase sales and develop loyal customer relationships, it’s important to understand the factors behind modern customer trust. Join us as we list ten factors customers use to determine the “authenticity” of your branding efforts.
- Don’t Be Evil
British Brands Group (BBG) research of consumer trust factors indicates that “benevolence” is a key factor in pure branding. Consumers must believe that your company’s priorities are the same as their own. This is judged by “credible communications, a strong sense of justice, ethics, consistency of past actions,” and brand messaging accuracy.
- Showcase Your Customers
Online reputation already matters in CPG, and could matter even more as online grocery ordering becomes more popular. Brands shouldn't hide their customers feedback. If your reviews and reputation are easy to find with Google, your consumers could be more likely to trust you.
- Foster Relationships
The stronger a brand’s relationship with their customers, the more likely they are to trust the company, per BBG. Your organization should work to build customer engagement genuine connection through social engagement, personalized communications, and other methods that show you care.
- Consistently Deliver Quality
Inconsistency can damage consumer trust. Remember, your packaging, product, and brand are virtually the same to CPG buyers. By ensuring that your product lives up to your packaging’s claims each and every time, and offering a consistent customer experience on media channels, organizations can achieve consistency.
- Invest Marketing Dollars Wisely
BBG’s research has found that marketing messages don’t have an impact on customer trust. Instead, customers crave relationships and “proof” that a brand is different than their competitors. When it comes to building or improving a reputation, influencer branding, engagement, and other digital marketing tactics could prove most effective.
- Be Visible
Being “loud” isn’t a bad thing. While broadcasting sales messages on your company Facebook page all day could irritate your customers, your buyers want to see an active brand. BBG indicates that customers rely on a brand’s activity in using social media and publishing custom content to determine authenticity.
- Show Real Integrity
Brand honesty matters most in times of crisis. If your organization makes a mistake, it’s critical to apologize and move on.
- Take a Stand
Geoffrey James of Inc writes that customer trust is built when organizations are willing to “take a stand” for what’s right, even if it’s in sharp contrast to category norms.
- Be Honest About Your Shortcomings
Your brand isn’t everything for everyone. And, admitting that fact can be okay. Perhaps you’re not the prettiest product in your category. Maybe you’re not the cheapest. Addressing the honest can be far more authentic than attempting to gloss over it.
- Be Respectful
Your company is in business because your customers don’t want to buy from your competitors. There are shortcomings with other products in your category, but that doesn’t mean that you need to point them out. An honest brand is built by being your true self, not tearing others down.
Are you working towards more honest and authentic branding? What do you think is important to building customer trust?