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Give Respect to Earn It - How Serving Your Community Serves Your Business

Welcome to Part Four of our New Year’s Business Resolution series! Last week, we discussed how cash flow and profitability are more interconnected than you may think. Now, we’ll take a look at new ways for you to be involved in your community.

As a business owner, your goal should be to offer a superior product/service at a competitive price. You should want a staff that’s friendlier and more accommodating. You should want to have a better #marketing campaign, better colors on your logo, better lighting in your store...better everything, right?

Most business owners recognize this, even if they don’t necessarily prioritize the quality of something like the lighting so much. What a lot of business owners fail to recognize is that none of those things matter if your customers don’t like your business.

Countless research shows that people tend to buy with their heart, not with their head. The true battleground for winning over #customers and getting them to continue to do business with you is by connecting with them emotionally.

Competitive prices and a friendly staff play into your likability, but as a business owner you should be finding new ways to #engage with and forge bonds with your customers.

Getting involved with your community is a quick way to engage with your customers because it involves you in their lives beyond just the product or service you provide.

A few places to start:

  • What local charities operate in your area? Get an idea of who is around you and different ways you might be able to help. Show your support for local runs and charity events by sending volunteers.

  • Are there local networking events you can speak at, or perhaps host at your location? The next time you need to hire, perhaps consider local job and career expos and see if you can find any candidates from the local community.

  • Partner with a local soup kitchen, or accept donations at your store for a local non-profit. Non-profit and charitable organizations, if run well, are ALWAYS engaged with the local community and are well connected. Broadening your network to include those in the non-profit sector in your community could help you find a strong ally elsewhere.

  • Are there resources of yours that can be donated toward a cause in your local community? Instead of making donations to big national initiatives, maybe consider helping out a smaller, local nonprofit.

At risk of being opportunistic, the best marketing you can do for yourself is marketing directly to the people in your own neighborhood. There’s no reason why you shouldn’t support and be a part of the things that matter to your community.

Finding ways to involve yourself in the local #community will get your business in front of more eyes, and hopefully gives you a chance to win over some hearts. Forging a personal, emotional connection with people is key to creating brand loyalty, and will help you succeed in the New Year.

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