It’s not too often that a company makes the effort to be truly authentic with their audience, but with the advent of the internet, it seems that the desire for trustworthiness and authenticity is on the rise. The “vote with your dollar” mindset has permeated American culture, and while it may seem out of place to wax philosophical on a web design and marketing blog, we strive to be authentic as well. So let’s take a look behind the curtain and consider what aspects of our business our audiences need to recognize as authentic.
People have more choices than ever before regarding where they spend their money, and people are free to make ethical choices by patronizing companies that identify as fair trade, vegan, non-GMO, provide fair employment practices, etc. However, people don’t choose businesses just because of their ethical practices, they also consider the trustworthiness of a business and whether they feel that the business in question values them as a customer, patient or client. Many people want to identify with and feel positive about the businesses they frequent. This is perhaps why online reviews are so valuable, as 72% of people say that reading a positive customer reviews increase their trust in a business (source: BrightLocal).
Authenticity can also be conveyed in other ways. In the world of web design, the move away from traditional stock images is routed in this idea. At this point, most people are turned off by the perfectly photoshopped happy people against stark white backgrounds. It feels the opposite of authentic. You may as well add a laugh track to your website. Sure, use plenty of photography, but use photography that is relevant that doesn’t feel staged and overused. If possible use photographs of your actual business and your actual employees.
The best thing you can do is: when in doubt, go with the truth. In a world of increasing transparency, people expect to know the real you. The days of boring stock photos, clip art, generic stock content, recycled blogs and robotic corporate salesmanship are thankfully dead! Contact New Wine Web Design today to help you devise a website and marketing strategy that’s as authentic as your business!
Images used under creative commons license – commercial use (1/20/2016) Caitlin Regan(Flickr)