Understandably, many companies don’t like to be seen as being weak. They fear that this makes them appear less capable or professional, and less appealing to consumers. While this can be true, so can the opposite—if done well! We’ve previously talked about turning negatives into positives, now Claire Baldwin discusses how owning your weaknesses can help you to develop a brand identity that people trust, appreciate and relate to.

By humans, for humans

One of the most important things for consumers is being able to relate to a brand. Your customers are human, and they love to know that you are human, too.

Showing off and flaunting your greatness isn’t always the best way to draw people in. Humans feel more comfortable around others who we perceive to be similar to ourselves. We may shy away from big corporations that alienate us or high-end brands that make us feel inferior.

While common sense leads us to believe that a mistake or weakness will cause a company to lose face and therefore also lose customers, people can actually be quite forgiving. We are empathetic creatures, and seeing someone else do something stupid and laughing about it together can strengthen the company-consumer bond.

Humans make mistakes, but humans are also caring, friendly, and just trying to do their best. If your brand embodies these qualities, you can build empathy and brand loyalty while minimising any damage to your image.

Admitting weakness is a sign of integrity

Admitting flaws makes a person (or brand) more likeable and shows honesty and integrity.

If there’s something about your company, product or service that’s less than ideal, trying to gloss over it will just lead to disappointment and frustration when that detail comes to light.

Consumers appreciate being given the facts clearly and up front. A 2018 study found that, beyond price and quality, the two top factors that attract people to buy from certain brands are delivering on promises and being transparent.

Being upfront minimises the risk of disappointment. Even if your prices are high or your delivery is slow, giving people realistic expectations builds trust and leads to better satisfaction. It’s better to under-promise and over-deliver than to keep up appearances and let your customers down.

Embracing emotion in business

While B2C brands may find it easier to appeal to the emotional side of their consumers than B2B brands, there’s definitely a time and a place for weakness when selling to other businesses.

Focusing on logic and rationality may provide a solid foundation for your pitch, but it’s only going to tell your customers what you do, not who you are. The decision-makers behind your B2B deals are human after all, and people buy from people.

It’s important not to overdo it, but resonating with B2B audiences on an emotional level can help you to develop a long-term advantage over your competitors. By injecting a little human element into the business deal, you can present a brand that is caring, honest and worth investing in.

Looking to develop your brand identity?

We know what makes people tick, and it’s our job to help you to consider your brand and how it appeals to your target audience.

Come and chat to us about your brand and let’s create an emotional connection that truly resonates with consumers.