4 Tips for Rebuilding Trust Post-COVID-19

Ashley Scharber - May 15, 2020

As local and state governments start to scale back stay-at-home orders and give the go-ahead for businesses to start reopening, a critical question businesses must prepare to answer is: How do we build trust so consumers feel safe resuming normal activities?

If you’re a business that relies on people coming into a physical location, such as a store, restaurant, hotel, hospital or doctor’s office, rebuilding trust means making people feel safe.

Despite being allowed to leave our homes again, many people have – and will continue to have – legitimate concerns about returning to the life they once had, the stores they visited and the restaurants they frequented pre-pandemic.

The key to successfully reopening your business is to make your customers feel safe again. Here are 5 tips for building that trust through your marketing:

#1 Detail What You’re Doing to Keep Customers Safe

Safety is top of mind for everyone right now. Because of this, it’s critical that safety is front and center in your marketing efforts and that you proactively tell customers what you’re doing to keep them safe.

Source: Google-commissioned Ipsos COVID-19 tracker, AU, BR, CA, CN, FR, DE, IN, IT, JP, MX, RU, ES, U.K., U.S. n=1000 online consumers 18+ per market, April 24, 2020–April 26, 2020.

Are you taking the temperature of all staff members before every shift? Have you installed plexiglass or other physical barriers? Are you limiting restaurant seating to reservations only? Tell your customers this.

It’s critical that you are transparent about everything you’re doing both internally and externally to keep customers safe. Ensure this information is shared across channels:

  • Create a dedicated page on your website to detail this information
  • Update priority, high-traffic pages of your site with specific details relevant to that services, product, etc.
  • Update the home page of your website
  • Include a banner across your website for easy access no matter how someone enters your site
  • Incorporate safety messaging into your paid advertising
  • Share regular updates on your social media channels
  • Post signage in your physical locations.

#2 Show Don’t Tell

A picture is worth a thousand words. While having clear messaging is important, actually showing what you’re doing is even more powerful.

In a time when physical barriers (PPE, face masks, plexiglass) are what’s keeping us safe, nothing is more impactful than images and videos showing the changes you’ve made.

Let your customers know what they can expect when they come to your location. Share photos of:

  • Safety measures in action
  • Patrons practicing social distancing
  • Staff wearing face masks and other protective equipment

#3 Provide Social Proof

Testimonials provide social proof direct from your customers to help reinforce your messaging.

If possible, gather testimonials from the customers coming into your locations. Ask them to talk about their experience and what they thought about the safety measures being taken.

Gather both text and video testimonials to share on your website and social media channels.

#4 Be Transparent

This pandemic has left the world in uncharted waters. Unfortunately, there is no guidebook on how to navigate reopening your business after a global pandemic.

You’re bound to make mistakes and run into challenges as we slowly figure out our new normal. And that’s ok – it’s even expected. So if your reopening doesn’t go as planned because you sell out of certain products too quickly or have longer wait times than expected, that’s ok.

But it’s critical that you are upfront and transparent about what you’re going through. Your customers are understanding people, but they need to hear directly from you about what’s happening.

Make sure you promptly and honestly address business changes and challenges as they occur.

An agile marketing strategy continues to be key during this time. For more insights and strategies for navigating your business reopening, contact MoreVisibility for more information.

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