How to Humanise Your Brand
People do business with companies they like. It’s a simple statement, but understanding it is a vital part of building a successful business in the 21st century.
At first it may seem bizarre, at least to some anyway. How can you ‘like’ a commercial entity, aside from simply liking the products and services they offer? Well, it’s a little more complex than that.
People are very good at giving non-sentient creations personality and character, in the same way that children naturally give backstories to their favourite toys. In a similar vein to this, people are drawn to things that have certain traits they like, things that are humanised. In the business world, brands can use this fact to get the edge over their competition and gain long-term supporters.
Humanisation is becoming an increasingly important part of branding, especially in the age of smart technology where people can discover and share everything about your business before they even set foot through the door. But how can you turn a business into a living entity that people care and feel for?
Find a voice
Every person has a voice. Your company should have one too. What you want to do is choose a voice that suits the personality of the services or equipment you are selling. For example, if you are selling weightlifting gear, go for something big, bold and unapologetically brash. If you are selling fine homeware, go for something more refined and delicate. Once you have settled on a voice or tone, they key is using it consistently in everything from advertising and press to website content. This will give your business an instant personality to anyone who sees it. It’s worth noting, however, these traits have to be likable, it’s no good giving you brand a personality if nobody can relate to it.
Use That Voice on Social Media Platforms
While you should be consistent with your business persona across all aspects of public relations, the most important place is to maintain it is social media. The hub of modern day marketing, social media provides an incredible opportunity for business to directly connect and engage with current and potential customers. It is here that they will really get a sense of your personality and voice. It is important then, that this voice be natural and genuine – human. It’s no good trying to appear to have a voice, yet constantly talking about marketing programs, deals or linking back to pages to try and draw in customers. This is of course something that can be done now and again, but for the most part, use social media to drive home the idea of humanity behind your brand. Even if the messages you are posting on social media don’t lead to direct sales, they will help evolve the brand.
Social media is also great way to advertise your business humanity by showing the people behind the brand. For example, if you have a big meeting of employees, take a group photo and share it, and if you get involved in a charity or team building event, share photos of that too. Anything that shows people; happy, relatable people.
Get Involved with the Local Communities and Charities
An excellent way to show that you are more than just a corporate machine, churning out products or services to produce profits, is to engage in unprofitable activities that benefit other people, rather than your business. This could include fundraisers in your community, supporting charity events or sponsoring local get-togethers. Not only will this show customers that you are looking out for the interest of others, not just your own, but it is also a way of advertising your business too. Just be sure to not be overly blatant in the advertising during the event, or people will quickly realise you aren’t in it for the community.
Treat Your Employees Well
People talk, and people share. If you mistreat employees or don’t show them the same care and attention you are showing the community, people with eventually find out. This will reveal your company’s humanity to be a facade, one which will immediately crumble in this context. The answer is simple. Be fair and kind to employees, go the extra mile to ensure their happiness and in turn people will know. Nobody wants to support a company that mistreats their workers, so don’t.
This has been a guest post by our fellow customer service guru, Dave Jones of Mobility Nationwide