Want to build belief in your brand? Build real things
Back in 2015, unless you were in the habit of wearing a tinfoil hat, you probably hadn’t ever heard the phrase ‘fake news.’
Since then, it’s been crowned Collins’ ‘word of the year’ and public trust in factual information has plummeted, with brand trust following suit.
Add into the mix the onslaught of options for even the most innocuous of daily choices (have you bought toothpaste lately?! There are over 100 to choose from FFS 😞) which makes our first thought – ‘do I know this brand?’, ‘do I trust them?’ and ultimately ‘do I believe in them?’.
Building that belief has never been more important.
But, what even is belief?
There’s a real difference between trusting and believing.
Trust can involve a degree of risk. We’ve all trusted someone who’s let us down and we’ve all seen and experienced brands doing the same.
Someone can take a risk to extend their trust to your brand on the basis of a sense of alignment or positive perception.
Belief is what happens when you consistently deliver on your promises and earn that trust.
If you are able to command belief, it tends to be because of repeated positive experiences, and more deeply than that, a sense of common ground and reciprocity.
A firmly rooted belief is what leads to strong, long-lasting relationships and strong, long-lasting brands.
Real things create belief
I often like to think of a brand as ‘a vision made tangible.’
Fun fact, this tangibility is why we still describe Huddle as a ‘creative innovation studio’ rather than a consultancy or something more amorphous.
It’s very important to me that what we call ourselves - being a studio, literally a place where the work of creating is carried on- gets across the fact that we make real things.
Brands and digital experiences may not be physical, but get them right and (as we hopefully are! 😛) they are real and substantial, not vague or elusive.
And real things are things that foster trust and give a reason to believe.
Humans are simple creatures, and we are naturally suspicious of the new. Present your brand with transparency, with authenticity, terms people understand, and can relate to, and you give yourself a fighting chance.
To make something real, ask yourself...
Aside from the obvious ‘to make money’ why does this business, product, organisation, whatever, exist?
What future do you want to help create? Protip: This doesn’t need to be something grandiose! Pepsi attempting to be a drinks company that creates racial harmony hardly ended well, did it… You don’t need to promise the earth, you just need to make it a better place from within your own lane.
How are we going to go about creating that future? This is where you might think about your methodology, and the design systems of principles that will inform your decision making.
Values: Who are you? How do you work? For example, at Huddle, our ethos is to be A True Friend. This is our touchpoint for everything we do, and something we are able to constantly check in with.
If something isn’t being done in this spirit of friendship, it is probably the wrong decision.
When belief is built-in to your brand, you’ll build belief in your brand.
Whatever your industry, belief must start with you, and only then can you make real things that inspire it in others.
If you’d like to chat about the brands you think are bossing belief, want to dig into making your brand unshakeable, or just fancy a really good coffee, I’d love for you to join me at The Ned.
I’m there every Wednesday -aka Nednesday! -with the specific goal of talking to interesting new people doing innovative things.