Brand, the buzzword for advertising for so many decades, has changed substantially from what it once was since the advent and supremacy of online commerce. Years ago brand was the holy grail for businesses and by extension advertising companies. Brand was splashed everywhere it could be – television, radio, billboards, and signage – and it lured customers and kept them. Nowadays, as traditional media platforms lose their potency and audiences, the function of brand has shifted and businesses need to recognise the power two things – their greatest asset and online reviews.
Every viable and successful business has a number of things in common – the way they do business, how they treat their staff. and the manner in which they interact with their customers. Sure, they have assets – plant, vehicles, technology, hardware, and tools but most businesses will. Successful businesses stay in business because they attract and keep customers, they turn new customers into converts who then spread the word. Decades ago this would be achieved by word of mouth, now it is digital. So the greatest asset that a business has? Well, it is their reputation, the overriding element in maintaining and growing profit and customer base.
How do reviews sell my business?
Simple. Reviews are the most sought after information for a potential customer to gauge the performance and services of a business, Reviews are your customers selling your business in a way you never could. Reviews create legitimacy, trust and attractiveness. Online reviews are the only way to broadcast the value of your reputation – your greatest asset!
So, what do online reviews have to do with brand?
Simply put, your reputation is your brand and online reviews convey the strength of your reputation. That’s it in a nutshell. Sure, you have a van with a logo on it, that logo is your brand, right? Well, no, it isn’t. It signifies very little and does less still to draw in the customers you want to grow your business. A logo, a brand logo for every business is a pointer. It’s a memory jog for a customer to go online and then find what they are looking for above all – your reviews.
The experiences and views of customers expressed through online reviews bridge the gap that you’re looking to bridge – between you and new customers. Reviews are the invitation for them to make contact after being assured that your business is the one they should reach out to.
Even today too many business owners waste huge chunks of their advertising and marketing budgets by spending unwisely in the wrong places. Committing to online reviews is not only the most effective method of attracting customers online, it is the cheapest. It makes no sense to me. 94% of people look for a business online and the vast majority of them seek out reviews. So why ignore that and why throw away money everywhere else? Why adhere to outmoded advertising strategies that will fail to deliver?
Your brand is your reputation online.