There’s a saying that most people will have heard; “people buy from people”. Whilst this is true to an extent, it’s often assumed that it relates to liking someone. It’s not, it’s about trusting someone. “People buy from people they trust”.
Trust is defined as “a firm belief in the reliability and truth in someone or something”. Here at BitBox, we believe that trust is fundamental in the formation of strong, long-standing customer relationships.
Companies such as ours have always placed trust at the heart of their sales approach. Trust is crucial in developing strong bonds with customers, especially when we face challenging economic environments which force us into headwinds out of our control. But what does this look like in practice?
There is a lot of psychology behind sales and how humans interact. In fact, sales psychology itself generates over 225 million search results on Google, as well as there being over 5,000 books available on Amazon. As an example, subjects like transactional analysis are key to understanding how humans interact. But this article is not a tome on the psychology of sales. Instead, I want to share my thoughts on why at BitBox we place so much emphasis on building trust.
Truth, transparency, and reliability
Trust doesn’t just appear upon the formation of a new relationship with a client, and you can never explicitly ask for it, either. It must be earned. To do this, we believe there are three elements which help build trust in a new relationship. We tell the truth to our clients, we are transparent about what is happening, and we are reliable when it comes to delivering what we say we would. Failing any or all of these would let our clients down and erode any trust they once had.
Things will go wrong
So, how do we ensure our relationships with our customers remain strong, especially in today’s business environment when we are facing severe economic downturns, global supply chain issues, rising costs and consumer uncertainty?
As I said earlier, people buy from people they trust. That’s an obvious trope in the world of sales and customer relationship management. When things go well, we may not even see how the trust we have built has benefited the process. It’s only when things go awry that it becomes evident that trust can mean the difference between success and failure.
We’re living through tough economic times, and the impact is having knock-on effects on our supply chains, ultimately affecting the delivery of the end product. Economic instability, global inflation and its effects on consumer confidence, global component shortages and a rise in component prices have all affected the supply chains which feed our production and manufacturing lines. The world we find ourselves in has forced us into changing the way we work, possibly forever.
We know we cannot control macro issues affecting businesses across the globe. However, we can be honest and open about how this will impact our clients and what we can do to mitigate it. Clear, honest communication is key. We don’t mask the problem, we are upfront about it, while at the same time working hard to find a solution. We believe that behaving in any other way will erode any trust a customer has in us.
It’s all easily said, but how do we at BitBox follow this ethos in practice?
First impressions count
From the minute we make contact, we know the customer is assessing us and our ability to deliver what we say we will do. The very first touch points paint an everlasting picture in the minds of our customers. We know we have seven seconds to make that first impression. As such, we make sure we behave in a way that impresses upon them that we will do good by them. In fact, we use every touch point available to us to demonstrate how we follow through – and fulfil – the deliverables we promise.
From the very beginning, we are open and transparent. We do our due diligence and planning – yet we can still be affected by issues arising that are out of our control, and this is where our focus on transparency of the process comes into play; it makes it much more understandable to our clients as to the reasons why we are challenged by an issue in the supply chain.
On the engineering side, the team invests time in understanding the client’s requirements. This not only ensures a detailed brief and an in-depth understanding of what is needed to design and produce the right solution, but it also ensures we can reliably deliver a brief to the right specification and gives both parties confidence in our fixed-price approach. Transparency, truth, and reliability play key roles here. We know what we’re good at and we know where our areas of expertise lie. When presented with a new enquiry, we go the extra mile to ensure we’re technically competent to do a good job. If we’re not, we’re going to say from the very beginning and try to signpost to a better-suited company. We’ve seen first-hand via our rescue service the consequences of a company claiming to be technically competent when they’re not. Ultimately, we will never risk letting our customers down by admitting further down the line that a part of the project has not worked, and we were unable to understand why.
Instilling values across all levels of the business
As I mentioned earlier, we’ve seen first-hand how ignoring the three values can have significant knock-on effects: not limited to delivering an unstable and unreliable product to the end customer, severe financial implications, and the possibility of irreversible damage to reputation. At BitBox we refuse to allow this to happen to our customers; we’d rather be open and honest about what we can and cannot do for them than proceed without care.
Our team are always working towards a common goal; ensuring the project is a complete success for the customer. We will always lean on our 30 years of experience in the industry to guide them to ensure they make sound decisions when it comes to electronics. And at the heart of all our behaviours, is trust – and as demonstrated in this article, we instil the values of truth, reliability and transparency throughout the business and work to ensure every decision made has the customer’s best interests at heart.
Building trust may not be rocket science, but it is fundamental to the success we have with clients – and it is often the sole reason they return to us. We have customers that have partnered with BitBox for over 20 years; this is something we are very proud of and consider it a testament to how we behave, act and look after them. There are two things that are very important to us at BitBox and are the core of everything we do: our staff and our customers. As a result, we firmly believe that every business should consider trust as the only currency it has to trade with.
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