Your brand is amazing, right? You've got a pretty big and solid market share, so you can sit back with a margarita and big fat cigar, right? Wrong.
No matter how big your business, how long it's been operating, how many customers you have - customer behaviour is changing. Rapidly.
People are savvy. We may dismiss them as we laugh at their errors on Buzzfeed or Failblog. We may have scoffed at their political analysis. However, they're Stephen Hawking on steroids (not sure even I get that analogy) when it comes to being suspicious of big brands, financial services, the media and being sold to.
So no matter how much Safe Style tell you their products are "great, look how many people are happy", we all raise a Roger Moore-esque eyebrow with cynical derision. Add to that all the bad press around fatcat CEOs, shirking of employment laws, disregard for the environment and hellbent on ripping off customers, it's hardly surprising.
Content can give you the edge
Think about your own buying habits. Do you buy iPhones because of the super-fast chip or unhackable technology? No, you buy it because it looks cool, to take photos to post on social media so your friends think you're cool, to watch the latest blockbuster while commuting so strangers think you're cool and because its shatterproof for when you're uncool.
We're all glued to shows like Love Island (not me) and X Factor (not me) because we become emotionally invested in finding out what happens next. Following people's journeys. Loving them. Hating them. Sharing their pain and joy.
It's escapism we can all relate to. We're living vicariously through them. They're doing things we wouldn't dare, but secretly want to.
Storytelling is older than time, you could say time is a story in itself. It started with minstrels and it's led to strangers microblogging their mundane lives on Twitter.
Business can use content in the same way to tell the story of their product. By bringing it to life with real people, you can:
- Show off your brand, products and/or services
- Make your content sing
- Be shareable
- Appeal to people at the top of the funnel and non-considerators
- Make your customers love you and become advocates for you (retention)
- Get lots of user generated content
- Create a dialogue with your customer base
- Capture leads
- Build digital equity (acquisition)
In summary, no one believes a single thing you say. They come to you because they're pain aware and possibly brand aware. Sometimes it's a case of better the devil you know or it's just the hassle-free option. It's by no means something to take for granted. And as competition heats up and new technology penetrates the market, it'll be easy to be left behind.
Don't just be the place where water cooler is - be part of the conversation that happens around it.