The Trust Fall Between Brand & Consumer
“Personalization wasn’t supposed to be a cleverly veiled way to chase prospects around the web, showing them the same spammy ad for the same lame stuff as everyone else sees. No it is a chance to differentiate at a human scale, to use behavior as the most important clue about what people want and more important, what they need” Seth Godin.
Once brands start to care about people, consumers will start to care about them. As consumers, we are bombarded daily with thousands of messages. TV, Billboards, Radio, Print, Digital Display Ads, Pre-Rolled Video Ads. This influx of noise and over stimulation has left us feeling disengaged, we want to feel important.
We are human after all. This human need of wanting to feel important aligns with Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. We want to belong, we want to have esteem, and most importantly we want self-actualization. We want tailored products and content that is only for us, and not really for anyone else.
Just think about it, why did you buy your favorite pair of jeans or shoes? Is it because the next person had it? Odds are that’s not your reason to buy. You bought it because it spoke to you and made you feel as if it was crafted just for YOU.
“You have to be no less than a customer concierge, doing everything you can to make every one of you customers feel acknowledged, appreciated and heard” Gary Vaynerchuk. Brands must be human and focus on building “friendships” with their consumers and not just relationships. A good friendship isn’t one where one friend contributes more value than the other, but where there is an even give and take.
For brands, this means continually giving in terms of valuable content and/or product offerings that in the end say “Hey, I know you’ll like this because we’ve been friends for X amount of time and I know what your needs are”. With the advance in technology, this is essentially doable thanks to Big Data and analytics. It now comes down to utilizing that information to truly connect with consumers on an individual and human level.
Attention is the most sought after currency in today’s modern economy. Although, for brands and marketers, attention is much deeper than just impressions. What are impressions if they aren’t deeply engaged with the content?
“The only way to make consumers interact with content, is personalization” Gary Vaynerchuk. Content is and will always be king. Consumers love content that is not only of value to them but also is relevant and provides a solution to their problem at hand. The humanization of content has allowed for marketers to tell their stories that connect with consumers. Successful brands will be able to utilize their content and messages to build a “friendship” with their consumers.
The essence of friendship is at the heart of personalization. Brands must continually work at gaining consumer trust through mutual attachment. This friendship agreement between brand and consumers is built on trust, honesty, loyalty, integrity, and respect amongst each other.
It’s time for brands to go one step further than just personalized or tailored messages. Brands must have a trust fall with their consumers. Can consumers trust that when they fall, the brands that they love will be able to catch them – knowing that their business isn’t just about bottom line, but that they genuinely care about them and will work at providing a tailored solution based on the consumers expressed desires.