Reputation is everything in business. It is how your customers decide whether to buy your products and services, how investors decide whether to inject capital into your company and how successful your brand is at penetrating the minds of your target market.
However, establishing a strong reputation is not the work of a moment. It takes considerable time and dedication to carve out a name for yourself because a reputation is an organic phenomenon.
You cannot force anyone to have a positive or negative opinion of your business, no matter how much you try.
All you can do is focus on what is important, and hope that the market rewards you for it with a strong reputation. This means striving to make your products as good as they possibly can be, making sure that every single customer has a positive experience, and that if anything does go wrong, you have the integrity to admit to your mistakes and put them right.
However, if you do find yourself needing to improve your corporate reputation fast, then there are a few approaches you can use to boost your chances.
Here are three methods that will help you improve your company’s reputation quickly:
Organize memorable business meetings
One of the best approaches you can take to improving your business’s reputation is to host memorable business meetings with your clients, investors, and colleagues.
By creating a positive experience that stays in the memory long after the actual meeting, you will help instill a positive emotional reaction to your brand in the minds of your guests.
A great way to do this is to host an overseas business trip. If you have clients who you want to impress, arrange to fly them out to an exciting location. Rather than simply wining and dining with them, demonstrate that they are valued clients by making the whole trip feel like a personal experience.
This could mean going on a sightseeing tour of a city where you have offices or trying the local cuisine before or after your meeting.
By going the extra mile with your business meetings, you will establish a reputation as a company that values every individual who meets it.
If you need help organizing an overseas business trip, consider working alongside a corporate travel management company.
Ask for testimonials from each client
Testimonials are a great way to quickly build your company’s reputation. Social proof is a key persuasion technique for a good reason – customers want to know that other people approve of your brand.
In the same way that an empty restaurant tends to stay empty, while a busy one just becomes busier, you need to demonstrate that your company is popular.
Social proof essentially relieves individuals of having to fully verify your company’s integrity. If dozens of other people have had a positive experience, they know that they are more likely to have a positive experience too.
Provide thought leadership in your industry
Demonstrating expertise is a fantastic (and relatively easy) way to build a strong reputation within your industry. One of the key reasons why customers choose a certain brand over another is because they subconsciously associate the entire industry with that company.
There are countless examples of this, from Coca-Cola to Hoover, Apple to Kellogg’s. Consumers simply buy from these brands because they are established as the ‘experts’ within their industry.
To fast track this shift in consumer behavior, start guest starring on industry podcasts, writing regular blog posts, building a social media presence, and even creating your own YouTube channel, demonstrating your expertise.