In today’s digitalised world, it takes a lot of work to upkeep your business’s digital personality, even if your business has a clean sheet.
But, putting in the time to hone your niche and build a loyal audience is a key factor to business success. Your voice matters, and making sure it matters to the right people can be a tough hill to climb.
Here are 4 reasons to personalise your online presence.
1. Because personality matters
Take a moment to look around at the world we live in. It’s shallow, no?
It’s filled with millennials who have the attention span shorter than a Goldfish.
It’s filled with fake news and people who fail to read the entire length of a blog post (I’m talking to you, millennial). What it’s lacking, then, is personality. And personality is emotional investment.
We’ve been telling stories since the dawn of time. They’re vital to our desire to belong and feel valued.
As a small business, your story is your biggest asset, and everything you do must be documented for those that do listen. You need to bring people along for the ride, but your first step is understanding who you want in the car. A surf business, for example, isn’t going to personalise their online presence for hockey players.
Know who you are, hone who you are and actively select your audience.
2. Because it’s about thought leadership
Nobody can be the best at everything. Justin Beiber is a great musician, but give him a pen and an idea for the next best screenplay, and I assure you he’ll fall short. I’m also sure he’d be the first to admit it.
49 percent of B2B buyers said their opinion of a company had decreased after reading poor quality content, and a third had removed a company from consideration based on its thought leadership output. If you try to fly too high too soon, you’ll fall short. Virgin Group started out as a music business, not as the conglomerate it is today.
What I’m trying to say is this: Instead of taking on the world and failing, tackle your community and win.
3. Because trust is your biggest asset
People don’t do business with a business, but with the people behind it. 96 percent of consumers say they’re likely to be loyal to a brand that offers complete transparency. A few years back, social media app Buffer was hacked. Within hours, CEO Joel Gascoigne sent an email to his customers with the subject title ‘Buffer has been hacked — here is what’s going on’. Courageous move.
But what Gascoigne did was mitigate a disaster, a disaster that could have sunk the entire company. But Gascoigne’s honest – and rather personal – email reassured customers. It brought the community together in a time of need, and today, Buffer are comfortably one of the key social media players, turning over $1.45 million USD.
This reaction led to a new wave of Buffer culture, too.
The company leaned into the transparency wind and are open about everything that goes on inside the company. It’s a very personal touch, that’s for sure. The result? Loyal customers, strong community and steady business.
4. Because you’re playing the long game
Building a business is a marathon, not a sprint, and nobody wants to burn out at the first hurdle.
Personalising your online presence is nothing more than about building an audience that is willing to grow and adapt with you, but who will stick with you throughout it all.
If you’re selling products or services and never speaking with customers again, you’re failing your customers. If you’re failing to put in the time to develop your voice or understand your niche, you’re failing yourself.
After all, how are you supposed to bring people along for the ride if they don’t know where they’re going?