Trust and credibility play a leading role in B2B business. Both factors are often even more important than the offers, conditions or market leadership status. Find out below how to build up brand trust via social media and what you need to keep in mind.
Trust building: what it means and why it is so important for B2B
Social media is more than just a range of platforms for B2B advertising of products, services and content. A variety of communication takes place via social channels which contributes to building up a community – and thus reinforcing trust in the brand. This trust building (or brand trust) is necessary for cultivating a deeper relationship to customers and through this relationship, encouraging repeat purchases and recommendations to others.
Because the B2B target group consists of specialists and decision-makers with high expectations, they have to be fed with high-quality content. This means: brand trust requires more than just broadcasting ads and sending emails to leads. As trust is decisive for brand growth and overall business success, company heads need a concrete strategy – with the aim to integrate characteristics such as safety and stability into their company’s identity.
Survey: brands are an anchor of trust
A good name is worth its weight in gold, as it stands for factors of success such as reliability, competence and credibility. With these and similar characteristics, companies form a foundation of brand trust. Surveys show just how important this is.
For instance: The State of B2B Brand Building 2022, commissioned by Transmission, the “the largest independent B2B marketing agency worldwide”, according to the company itself. The research data was collected by Jigsaw Research online in April 2022. Surveyed were senior decision-makers in Australia, China, France, Germany, India, Singapore, the UK and the USA who determine how their companies’ B2B marketing budgets are spent.
The majority of the participants stated that their brand has a strategic priority for their CEOs and chairpersons. A total of 32 per cent consider brand trust to be “very important”, and for 54 per cent is the topic of “highest importance”. This high ranking, however, is not reflected in the financial spend. Only “between 5 and 20 per cent” of the annual marketing budget is invested in building trust.
Building up a trusting social media identity: manage it with these tips
The brand trust mechanism sounds simple: the more brand trust a company is able to earn, the higher their ability to cultivate and foster business relations. And this even when they are not necessarily market leaders when it comes to factors such as price, speed or availability.
As a result, the building-up of trust and credibility via the route of digital B2B media is for many companies significantly important. These aspects can be reinforced over time through target-group-centric, consistent and transparent communication, as well as through the offering of high-quality products and services. To achieve this, there are a few general recommendations for marketing-based decision-makers in the B2B environment:
- Demonstrate specialist knowledge: expertise is a strong argument, and it makes a significant contribution to establishing a brand as an authority in its branch.
- Highlight customer success: by sharing case studies and experience reports of satisfied business partners, you can prove the quality of your own products or services.
- Deliver added value: the content provided must be informative, relevant and on a high level, while the ongoing publishing of strong content builds up brand trust among the target group over time.
Trust building: how to get started
So: what can you do today in concrete terms to get started? These five tips can be helpful for building up trust:
1. Be honest and transparent. This means giving customers and clients clear information about product and service details. Transparency from a company or the C-suite via social media, blogs, press releases and other publications anchors integrity and trust. Being open about processes in daily business allows interested persons to gain an insight into your company culture.
2. Build up emotional connections. Companies must show that they understand their target group and know what they want. Customers are hounded every week by matter-of-fact offers, ads, emails and calls. Showing empathy in this case can make a difference. To create emotional ties, the interested persons must see how the solutions can have a positive effect for them.
3. Explain, not sell. B2B companies offer concrete goods, but also frequently their solutions too. Their optimisation in terms of efficiency, performance and productivity, however, is not highlighted. The result of the capital gains for the customer, for example, after months or even years is not obviously tangible. Here, the task is to document positive development steps and continually communicate the benefits to the public.
4. Take a stance. Traditionally, B2B brands seldomly take a stance on cultural and societal topics, largely due to the fear of an abreaction or ostracism. But this is exactly a very simple opportunity: demonstrating your own values. In this way, employees and customers can better understand companies and trust that their issues and priorities will be taken seriously in line with the company philosophy.
5. Communicate your content. Your own research and well-thought content are the be all and end all of B2B brand trust. This includes the sharing of your own data and solid information. B2B marketing content should always be positioned in a way that it serves a defining point on the customer’s journey and not just wants to sell a product or service. This means focusing on new ideas, standing out from the competition and underscoring the advantages of your own solutions for the industry.
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