Avoid the DK Phenomenon

Do Your Customers Really Know You?

The public’s perception of your business is different from yours—this is not an opinion—this is a fact. It’s the DK phenomenon. Perhaps you have a repeat customer who always comes to you for one of your services and to your competitor for another. Then you hear your long-time customer say, “I ‘didn’t know’ you did that.” Ugh, they DK’d!

How can you expect people to choose you if they’re unaware you’re an option? Or worse, they do know, but don’t think you can deliver what they need!

Misinformation about you and your business will lose you more money than a shifty employee skimming profits. When a potential customer holds a belief your company cannot meet their expectations or needs, the conversation is naturally difficult with you attempting to shake their beliefs. 

Your Business Reputation

What people think can either build your reputation or kill it. Imagine a fancy restaurant known for its romantic ambiance—and its rude servers. Will you reserve a table for a special night and then worry your date will be disappointed because of the disdainful waitstaff? Or will you choose another restaurant? A restaurant with this reputation will have to be diligent and work twice as hard to provide a stellar customer experience to overcome the bad rap. And they may never get the chance if your opinion is so low you don’t try them.

Another problem may be that you’re so well-known in one area, you’re pigeon-holed, and people don’t consider you for anything but the ONE thing you’re famous for. Nothing wrong with being famous—but it can cut off revenue streams if customers think you are just a self-serve car wash but you also have a detailing service and a dog wash!

How do you get the word out about hidden gems you offer or clean up a bad reputation? You know word of mouth is a terrific way to expand your business but maybe you’re just starting out, have little in the way of reviews, or need to manage some negative press. 

You could wait for customers so enchanted with their dining experience to tell their friends or for the word to get around about sweet-smelling pooches, or you could take a quicker route and amplify your message with a social influencer. Read more about the four levels of social influence.

Social Influencers come in all shapes and sizes. For instance, your acquaintance who recommends their insurance agent is one kind, and paid endorsers like J.K Simmons portraying the Farmers Insurance guy is another kind. If you don’t want to necessarily wait for someone to mention you in casual conversation and you don’t have the budget for a Hollywood actor you may want to find someone aligned with your company’s mission and values.

Three Things to Consider When Choosing a Social Influencer.

Are you a good fit?—Does their public persona match your business? Imagine Larry the Cable Guy advocating for Tiffany’s. Or Prince William endorsing McDonald’s. An influencer worth their salt should never accept an endorsement they don’t really believe in.

Budget and Timelines—Are you ready to invest the time and money? Influencer campaigns take time to build. The first three months might not overwhelm you with an avalanche of business but over time the growth is exponential. If you drop the campaign too quickly your investment was a waste of time and resources.

Authenticity—Another consideration is tied to an influencer’s authenticity. They lose credibility if one week they wax poetic about Joe’s car dealership and the next sing the praises of Jim’s car dealership. Before choosing an influencer, look at their past partners and make sure it’s a good match.

Looking to learn more about how to choose a social influencer? Give us a shout, and we’ll meet with you to craft the perfect strategy.

Tami-Newman

Tami Newman – Creative Thinker, Brand Strategist, Skier

Tami Newman began her career in marketing at the age of six when she successfully convinced her Aunt that LUVs were the only diaper she should ever buy for her brand new baby cousin. She said she watched all the commercials and LUVs were by far the best choice. No one ever unlocked the reason she was so certain, but her cousin wore only LUVs. Since then, Tami has worn all the hats in the marketing universe—sometimes several at once—sales, graphic design, writer, social media manager, and entrepreneur. Today she occupies a seat at the Mid-West Family Madison Brand Strategy table, she’s waiting there for you now.