Startups have an image problem. For every Uber or Airbnb, there are countless other startups hemorrhaging money and failing to deliver on promises. It can be difficult to overcome the stereotypes associated with unsuccessful startups. Images of companies started by Millennials in hoodies and sneakers may not exactly lend credibility to your brand.
When people trust your brand, however, it’s easy to get them to buy into your product. Think about the inherent trust we all feel picking up a brand name product in the grocery store versus risking your cash on an off-brand or generic option. The difference lies not within the contents of the packaging, but the reputation built by the brand name version. Building this kind of trust can feel like an impossible feat, especially in the early stages of starting your company. There are, however, a few ways to help you build a reputable and trustworthy brand without breaking the bank.
Translate trust into opportunity by following these tips:
1. Hire a virtual receptionist.
In many ways, the person who answers your phone is the face of your business. They offer the initial warm welcome to investors and provide the first line of defense against frustrated customers. Even if you’re not ready to bring on a full-time receptionist, a live virtual receptionist can help you handle call volume, schedule appointments, provide customer support, and more. It’s not only extremely affordable and cost-effective, but you’ll also come across as way more professional to potential clients and colleagues. MAP Communications even offers a week-long free trial to assuage any concerns you might have about the bringing on a virtual receptionist.
2. Create a professional presence.
There’s nothing quite like a slick website, a stylish logo and a helpful social media persona to build credibility for your brand. Sure, you can pour your capital into designing a perfect product, but if a well-designed business falls in the woods, will anyone hear it? Successful startups deftly balance both their brand and their delivering of promises. Investing in the creation of your product or service is obviously important, but neglecting your online presence just isn’t an option these days.
3. Maintain your reputation.
Where there’s smoke, there’s fire. Even if rumors about your company aren’t true, they can make some people hesitant to buy into what you’re selling. The reality is that most startups fail. Use past accomplishments to forge partnerships with more successful businesses further along in their evolution. By connecting with more powerful companies with trusted histories, you bolster your own reputation.
4. Become an industry thought leader.
It’s not easy to declare yourself an innovator. But if you can walk the walk as you talk the talk, you’ll find yourself building a reputation that people can trust. Reach out to niche audiences who can benefit from your services and create raving fans out of them. Whether through thoughtful content marketing or contributions to industry publications, add your two cents to discussions relevant to your business. When possible, connect with journalists to lend your insight to current events. You never know when your name could become associated with the next big trend.
5. Share your success.
There’s a fine line between bravado and pride, and the best startups walk it with ease. While nobody likes a braggart, when your company is relatively young, it makes sense to celebrate and share your wins. You can’t build credibility without showing that the proof is in the pudding. Highlight your accomplishments as evidence of your ability to deliver. Do so with a matter-of-fact tone and you’ll come across as capable and competent, not boastful or braggadocios.
6. Make reliability your goal.
None of the above tips are worthwhile unless you follow through with fidelity. Given the failure rate of startups, consumers are pleasantly surprised when a company delivers on their promises every time. Of course, doing so is easier said than done. Credibility and trust come with time, so make it your mission to execute as perfectly and as precisely as possible. Anything less can spell disaster.
Whether you decide to employ one or all of these strategies, you’re sure to be building your company’s reputation in a positive way. It just takes a single phone call to MAP Communications to tick the first action item off your list. A professional virtual receptionist is an easy and practically instantaneous way to add an air of reliability to your startup.
For over 25 years, MAP Communications has provided call center support solutions and answering services to businesses from every industry. Live receptionists are available 24/7, freeing you and your team up to tackle other tasks. Not sure of your exact requirements? MAP Communication’s world-class support team can help you get started. Call today to set up your free, week-long trial.