Trust is the cement that builds strong relationships, for personal and romantic relationships just as much as it does for business relationships in the service sector. Building trust leads to return customers and great publicity, via positive reviews and feedback, for your service startup and reduce the chances of your startup failing. In this blog, we explore practical and easy to implement ways you can engender trust in your service startup that have helped DeluxeMaid thrive.
Respecting Your Pioneering Initial Customers
Your initial customers are pioneers of sorts. They are willing to risk engaging your business’ services without the security of positive reviews as a safety net. Eventually, you will have reviews that encourage potential customers to trust in your services. Right now, you are looking to attract customers who are willing to take a risk and give your business a try. So, treat these initial customers with the respect they deserve! These customers are valuable to you as they will be the ones you can gather positive feedback and reviews from, that demonstrate your business can be trusted to deliver quality service every time.
Discounts Encourage Initial Customers to Commit
So, consider how you can ensure your business attracts these pioneering early customers. It’s hard to justify a high-price or even a market going-rate deal when you’ve no history of good feedback. There needs to be some hook, some lure, something to draw these adventurous customers to invest in your, as yet, un-proven business. Such customers are willing to take risks but expect rewards as a result. Ensure your initial offer is attractive and catches the eye of potential customers in a crowded marketplace, one where other more established businesses have the luxury of positive Trustpilot reviews. Standing out by offering time-limited large discounts or added-extras will help those adventurous early customers to risk engaging your services. These draw such customers to your business and give you valuable opportunity to gather feedback.
Building Trust by Offering Fantastic Service
You’ve attracted your initial customers by offering impressive deals and discounts. Now you need to wow them with fantastic service to ensure they are satisfied and impressed. For us, a successful start-up that has successfully navigated those early months, that meant extremely tight margins, as cleaners double-checked that the clean was spotless. It meant keeping a tight focus on quality and customer satisfaction at each stage of customers’ journeys; auditing and quality checking jobs as needed. It also meant offering a clear 100% satisfaction guarantee.
Seek Feedback to Ensure Customers Know They Can Trust Your Service Startup
So, you’ve ensured that these initial customers receive a fabulous service at a fantastic price. Now, it’s your turn to receive something valuable in return – their views and feedback on the service. Do not leave feedback to chance. Be proactive about asking for feedback with each and every customer. This has two crucial benefits. You quickly identify any customer who is dissatisfied and have opportunity to address and respond to any concerns before they result in negative online reviews. You also have chance to harvest glowing feedback that will be the substance the subsequent customers rely on to place their trust, and their money, in your business. So, be intentional about asking for feedback with every customer.
Marketing in the Trust Building Phase
Building trust as a service startup can be considered a phase. Building trust in your business requires concerted effort, commitment and resources. And, as your startup becomes more established, the business model evolves. Your pricing structure and advertising strategy adapts. For us, that meant being pro-active and visible on Facebook, Thumbtack and Craigslist in the early days. You need to be visible and intentional in this phase of marketing and securing those all-important pioneering initial customers. As your customer base grows and as your positive review feedback increases, then you can change tactics. SEO and your ranking on Google becomes far more important and will increase as you garner more and more traffic to your website.
The Bottom Line: Building Trust as a Service Startup
So, to answer the initial question – how long does it take to build trust as a service startup? It’s a process. A process that begins with you trusting your own abilities to deliver on quality. A process that allows you to provide attractive offers to initial pioneer customers. A process that continues with quality service, time and time again. A process that needs to include deliberate and intentional sourcing of feedback.
This blog post was written by James King, Chief Operations Officer of DeluxeMaid.