What first impression does your company give out? The first impression these days isn’t just coming into contact with your business location; it is about the very first instance that a person hears of you and what you do.
It is suggested that the first impression formed in seven seconds, and changing a person’s mind on this impression can be extremely difficult. The opinions they form about you can be challenging to overcome if that first impression doesn’t do the job right.
But what are all the ways your business can make a first impression, and how can you make them positive?
Let’s start with the standard business premise. In fact, at one time, this was the main way a person would form an opinion on you and your business. Making a good first impression means paying attention to how the building looks from the outside of people visiting you and what it says about you. A dirty, unkempt building and entranceway will definitely detract from good first impressions and will result in negativity towards you and what you do, even if you go above and beyond. However, cleaning up your external areas, having commercial concrete polishing carried out, adding plants, fixing any damage, and ensuring your entrance is clearly signposted will all help to boost the opinion people form of your business and what they can expect from you.
Word of Mouth
Good old word of mouth is still one of the best forms of marketing you can ask for. A good review from person to person based on their experiences will serve you well. The British cut-price retailer, Home Bargains has never used paid-for TV or radio marketing; instead, it relied on word of mouth to boost footfall and reputation. These days, they engage in social media marketing and work with influencers, but the company relied heavily on word of mouth for many years and went from one single store to over 550, and the founder is now sitting on a multi-million-pound fortune.
If what is being said about your company may fall short of what you want, it might be time to find out what is going wrong and fix it. Otherwise, people will be turned away before knowing anything other than what others have told them from their experiences.
Now, onto the more modern ways for people to find out about your business: online. Once something is online, it is there forever, and you cannot erase it, no matter how much you want to. Instead, you will be constantly trying to make amends for anything negative.
The best way to avoid a bad online reputation is to make sure no one has anything bad to say about your company in the first instance. Be mindful of what you share online, how you engage with others, and how well you treat your employees, customers, and partners.
Cultivate your brand image and ensure everyone representing the company adheres to this and is complicit in ensuring only a positive association is created in regard to your company. While you can use reputation management services to turn the tide, overpowering any negativity about you online can take a long time. Be mindful of what can and will most likely be shared about you, and ensure that only the good stuff sticks.