It's gotta be you? The art of virtual relationship

29th January 2014

In an increasingly virtual world, a world in which more than ever before we end up buying from people or companies we have never seen, known or engaged with, how do we cope with man’s natural need for relationship?


Think about it. People buy people, all of us will go out of our way to show loyalty and buy from someone we know, rather than someone we don’t. We love it when we’re recognised and fussed over by the restaurant owner  / shop keeper / paper seller…it’s a natural outworking of a very deep need inside us all, a need to be loved, affirmed and valued; ultimately it’s why we need loving parents and why, in a society that is increasingly both fatherless and virtual, social media is as important as it is. We need to be in relationships of perceived trust.


So how does that work? Let’s for a moment stop being at the receiving end of the relational equation and consider how, as sellers of products and services, we can start to create those relationships with our clients, both potential and actual, that will attract them to us.


As with all things our website should be the initial focus, this being the home of the heart and soul of our brand and identity. Simply put, and ignoring for the moment the importance of easy navigation, the start point on this relationship building journey will be the look and feel of our website design. Does it inspire? How will a visitor feel on arrival? Does it immediately start to give answers? Is it, in a word, sticky?


A good test is to print off the Home Pages of 20 websites, including your own, and to ask a panel of random viewers to flick through these, allowing three seconds for each. Then ask them which they remember and would like to revisit. You’ll soon find that “sunnier” sites seem to work best…not necessarily because they’re more attractive but because they’re “warmer”; natural warm colours (or white spaces), not too fussy, easy to take in, relaxed even…all those things we subliminally identify with being at ease. Why? Because the more at ease I can make you, the more open and ready you’ll be to accept me and the relationship I want to have with you…


Next time…adding the words!





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