In my last post on Pendulum and business we looked at how customers want who you are and what you stand for, imperfections, shortcomings and all. Here we look at how important it is to be who you say you are.
Customers today are skeptical. If something sounds too good to be true, most people will turn and walk the other way. It’s all part of the values of our current WE Cycle.
In our book Pendulum, my co-author Roy and I examine the invisible pendulum swings of society every 40 years or so as it shifts back and from an individualistic “me” society to a more civic-minded “we” one. We are about 10 years into our current WE Cycle.
In a WE Cycle, people don’t want you to tell them what you believe. They want you to show them. The years of hype and inflated promises from the previous ME Cycle have heightened the B.S. meters among consumers (and current public lies, from politicians and social-media trolls, aren’t adding to people’s trust, either). Sensationalism and inflated promises come across as phony. People don’t want sugar-coated—they want real, raw and relevant. They want to know who you are, what you stand for and if they can trust you to solve their problems.
The quickest way to fail in business is to break all the promises you make and leave your customers high and dry.
You can’t scam success in a WE Cycle, even if you think you can. Sure you may get results for a little while using less-than-honest strategies. But I assure you that those results will be short-term. Count on your bad reputation spreading like wildfire.
But why paddle upstream and work against the values of consumers when you can sail downstream and reach your goals more effectively? Your customers don’t want hard, pushy sales tactics. They want to connect with you and your business and invite you into their lives.
But in order to get that invitation, you must first build trust.
In our next post on this subject, next week, we’ll look at building trust with your customers.[rps]