The most valuable asset a business has is its credibility, so building and protecting that should be one of the most important things on any business agenda.
The public credibility of companies has never been under more scrutiny than in recent years. With crises such as the Tesco’s accounting saga, or the various tax avoidance scandals that have emerged over the past year, credibility is no longer an easy thing to maintain, whether you deserve it or not.
In a world of ‘Screens everywhere’ and ‘always on’, your audience has access to so much information, they no longer have to take businesses trustworthiness at face value. Access to the internet and media enables them to search out the truth themselves and form their own opinion of a business’s credibility.
It is no longer good enough to just be known as a key player in your industry sector, businesses must now work to enhance their businesses integrity in their audiences’ eye, be that with customers, stakeholders, investors, future employees or industry peers. Most importantly, potential clients, looking to award companies major contracts want to be confident that they are investing in a financially secure and robust business that can honour its obligations, both now and in the future.
So how can PR help build your businesses credibility?
The generation of media exposure around a business and its leadership story is crucial to building your credibility. Coverage across the business and management press – from the FT to Sunday Times Business section to leading business titles like Real Business and Management Today can help tell the story of your business, and build the profile of your management team to ensure your business has a human face. Being open and honest builds a culture of trustworthiness between you and your audience, vital to giving your business credibility, especially to those businesses trying to attract investment or exit opportunities at any stage.
Nowhere is more important to do this than in your target markets. Allowing potential clients to see your business as open, honest, human and successful will establish credibility and open up opportunities for growth in new areas.
The placing of content in key titles is a far more valuable tool to use to achieve this credibility than advertising. Whilst advertising is paid for, the placing of content on or offline retains the neutrality of the publications editors which adds that critical third party endorsement everyone desires.
To make a business credible, you need to build a relationship with your audience, and to do that you must be known to them, and for great things. There is no better way to do that than through the media they engage with, and trust on a daily basis. Build the relationships with that media through your PR activity and you will build trust and more importantly your business credibility.