Many businesses could attract a great many more customers than they are, simply by telling their story. You may not think that your story matters much to customers, but in fact it can be just the element that causes them to choose you over your competitors.
You can use points like how long your company has existed, positive things that other customers have said about you, and whether or not you are a family-run business, to sway new customers in your favor.
What is considered a “family business”?
Just as if you were building your résumé for a new employer, you can organize the facts in such a way that it portrays your business in a more attractive light, without ever telling untruths.
Businesses have long understood that customers like to hear that they are a “family-owned & operated” company; and first of all, if your business is indeed exclusively owned and operated by family members, then you should definitely advertise it as such, if you aren’t already doing so.
Even if only a portion of your team are family members, however, you can still use this to your advantage. For example, you can still advertise your business as a company which has family “at the core of our team”. If your business is owned by family, but also employs non-family members, then you can promote this fact.
Your team is family.
Similarly, your team, whether they are all your relatives or not, may be like a family because everyone gets along and have close working relationships.
It’s not necessarily the fact that your actual relatives are working for the business, but the connotation associated with the idea of family is many times what customers find appealing.
So why do customers prefer a “family business”?
A business that is run by members of the same family is attractive to customers for a variety of reasons, and business owners have taken advantage of this for a long time.
The first thing is that it may hearken back to the early twentieth century, when many small businesses, as well as large enterprises, were run by family only. Johnson & Sons, or Smith Bros. for example were company names that Americans were very familiar with in the beginning of the century, and we are still familiar with them, to some degree.
There are some unique qualities that we automatically attribute to family businesses, such as dependability and quality, and we also assume that the business will have an upstanding and traditional set of values. Whether or not this is always true we can only speculate, but family owned & operated organizations have historically been businesses on which we could rely.
So if you’re keeping the business in the family, even just in part, don’t be afraid to openly express it to your customers. It can be a great selling point that many companies cannot claim, which will set you apart from your competitors while instilling trust in your customers.
Stephanie is the Marketing Director at Talkroute and has been featured in Forbes, Inc, and Entrepreneur as a leading authority on business and telecommunications.
Stephanie is also the chief editor and contributing author for the Talkroute blog helping more than 100k entrepreneurs to start, run, and grow their businesses.