Staying clear of controversial issues might seem like the safe, prudent course of action for most companies. But, as Anais Nin said, “Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” So, how can you expand your business by strategically standing by your convictions?
Hi friends! James Runkle here. As the Owner and Founder of Drummond St. Strategy, I constantly balance the need to be ‘part of the discussion’ while attempting not to offend anyone. Sometimes I find it tough to please everyone, all the time. And maybe that’s a good thing!
Having convictions (and, more importantly, standing by them!) is stigmatized in many corporations. However, I don’t agree! Standing firm and knowing what you believe in can have many, positive effects.
You’ll form more meaningful relationships with customers
As the owner of a boutique marketing agency, we don’t try to separate personalities from professionalism. My business IS my people, with all our glorious quirks and idiosyncrasies. And it’s exactly those unique personality traits that help people get to know us and know they want to work with us.
Social media is exactly that – social. Our digital platforms aren’t sanitized – they are a real reflection of our work and our lives. And, because of that, potential customers can visualize what it will be like working with Drummond St. Strategy and are more likely to form that bond.
You’ll create long-lasting relationships with your customers
Recurring business is the Holy Grail of any small business. Fostering loyalty amongst your customers is the #1 priority in any company. When you both deliver outstanding results as a vendor and ALSO have some fun along the way? Magic. The same people you’ve attracted with your company’s convictions will remain for years to come.
You’ll show that you have a strong stance
Showing your convictions will demonstrate that you are also a strong person. No one likes a wishy-washy person who changes their opinions at the drop of a hat. Standing by your convictions means you have the experience and confidence to do so – which translates into the experience and confidence to deftly handle the project for which you’ve been hired.
You’ll give your clients the best possible work and results
Remember, you are the expert. You’re clients hire you because you are strong in an area where they are not. Your experience and your knowledge will benefit the project and the client – but only if you stick to your convictions. Being timid about your knowledge isn’t fair to the client – you are being paid to create the bet outcomes you know how. But that can’t happen if you don’t stand for what you know is right.
Recently, I was in a meeting where the client team was debating if the logo, in the upper left corner of the website, should link back to the homepage of the site. Without hesitation, I spoke up to say that is standard practice and, if they did not follow that best-practice, it would be a mistake. Had I been timid or afraid to stand by what I know is right, the project would have suffered.
You’ll become an industry expert
In the age of lists (“7 Ways To Increase Your ROI!” screams the headline), the smart people are looking beyond the platitudes and reading further. When you know what you stand for, you will start to rise above the crowd. You’re not just imparting knowledge – you’re giving people practical ways to apply it to their daily business lives.
When you know your convictions, your opinions and advice don’t waver. You become a constant, consistent, reassuring beacon of light in a tumultuous sea of jumbled content.
You’ll increase your search traffic and engagements
With happier customers and more people seeking you out for your advice, your search traffic and engagements will organically increase. Bonus, right? Not only will you do better work for your clients but you will also be helping your own website’s SEO.
Your convictions will streamline your business development process
When you and your company are steadfast in your beliefs, you’ll naturally find that certain companies gravitate towards you and want to work with you. Also, you’ll see that some organizations decide to self-select out of the process. And that’s a good thing!
Believe me, Drummond St. is a smaller-sized agency and it can be nerve-racking to think about turning away potential business. But, by showing your personality and staying true to what you believe in, you will see that those companies who don’t align with your culture aren’t a good fit for you, anyway. The idea of 6 months worth of revenue may sound attractive sure. But, if the cultures truly don’t mesh well, that income will come at the expense of 6 months of misery, miscommunication and unhappy clients and employees. Not worth it.