Psychologists have understood for years that appearance and positive interactions can create a halo effect across a person and those standing close by.
It works equally across a business. Get one area top-notch and the halo spreads across your brand. Look at Apple’s halo as an example.
You’ve probably heard the story about equivalent job applicants?
Two people with very similar abilities, but quite different in appearance and presentation.
The one with the more classically appealing appearance and presentation will get the job every time.
I recall one particular story where an applicant when into a business to apply for a job…obviously before the mandated online application systems. He had a scraggly beard and wore unkempt clothing.
Then he went home and shaved/groomed his facial hair and put on a business suit. He reapplied.
When they offered him the job, he clarified who he was and that he had done this in the interest of research.
How embarrassing for the business.
But we have had these responses ingrained in us for millennia. A beast at the entrance to the cave was much more a threat than say an attractive female alone.
In my 30 years in business, I’ve interviewed thousands of clients, students, and applicants. There are some truths that almost always hold true…and I see the same thing happening with businesses and products.
In fact, there are numerous articles about businesses chasing the halo effect to increase their chance to gain new clients. It’s the old “if you stand close, it rubs off on you” theory.
It’s important to keep in mind…
Once that halo is applied, it needs to be backed up with continued support. It only takes one bad product to destroy loyalty and that positive view of you When that happens, they call it the “horn effect,”…speak of the devil.
Here are 3 techniques to earn that halo…
That halo is generated from the first brief 2-5 seconds of a customer’s encounter with your brand. That might be the physical product, you in person, or your website. You only get one chance to create that first impression. These tips can help you make it your best.
Halo 1 is earned with your website.
The coronavirus has made online the preferred method of connecting with and purchasing from a brand. They will decide based on…
- Your website appearance
- Ease of navigation
- Great product information
- Detail resource documents
- Ease of finding and using the contact information
Speaking as a customer…there is nothing worse than an inability to get questions answered.
A second Halo is your voice or tone
Its the way you share. Confident…not cocky or grandiose. Sincere, honest, and clear.
For your products, it’s how they match your mission statement physically, price, and in the presentation.
Every type of communication needs to reflect this…
- Marketing posts
- Customer communications
Passionate about what you’re doing…there is nothing that engages us quicker than a passionate person that is close to our beliefs.
A third halo tidbit is getting client-focused…
Some businesses are built on this. Some are evolving into it. And others are fighting it tooth and nail. With all the competition out there, this last group will be getting the horns…not the halo.
To earn and keep this halo, you need to demonstrate it across every connection and interaction you have with clients and prospects.
You don’t have to be perfect in every little thing, but get the customer focus right, and provide quality products and they will let your halo from that shine across your brand.
Look at the tone of your communications, responsiveness, and ease of access.
Right now everyone is running a little bit slower. Put it out there. Whatever you are able to do at the moment, communicate it clearly to establish client expectations.
A few months ago small businesses were struggling to compete against Amazon’s next day delivery. No more. Even they can’t accomplish it. Just tell your customers what you are experiencing and what you can do.
Share this across all your brand communications: website, emails, and social media.
Keep customers updated if a product is coming back into availability that has been back-ordered. Let them know if there will be restrictions and limitations.
It’s really all about being the kind of communicator you want your suppliers to be. Share it forward with your customers and prospects.
Want to know if you earn a halo or horns? Contact me by Friday, May 8 at 5PM PDT to have a shot at winning a “halo or horns” look at your website. firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your name, email, and website URL.