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Sometimes businesses get a bad rap when it comes to conveying empathy.

However, as we venture further into 2022, more customers crave authenticity, empathy, and value-driven marketing strategies from the brands they know and love. While this is great to see, some brands may not know where to start or are unsure their budgets can afford to make these changes.

Luckily for you, your company doesn’t have to plant a forest for every sale to convey empathy to your customers; in fact, there are simple changes you can make today to give back, big or small, by embracing transparency, sustainability, inclusivity and diversity, and nurturing your internal culture. Keep reading for a full list of the ways your business can convey empathy.

1. Transparency

If you’ve bought, well, anything in the past year and a half, you might’ve experienced shipping delays, product shortages, or fulfillment issues within the process. COVID-related delays have become such a normal part of consumerism that companies feel like they no longer owe an explanation to customers. Of course, no one can fault your company for unanticipated global events. Still, how your business handles these tribulations and offers transparency to your customers about prolonged delivery times or issues with their order can go a long way.

Transparency is not just limited to shipping, though; companies can choose to be more open with their customers on various subjects. For example, a recent product launch might not have gone as expected, and your business is now experiencing backlash from customers. Taking the time to apologize to your customers, thank them for their loyalty, and commit to learning from the setback is another way to express transparency and earn trust.

2. Sustainability

Remember when we said you didn’t have to plant a forest to convey empathy to your customers? Well, you still don’t, but taking a stance in support of environmental sustainability can help show your business cares about more than just sales. From packaging and production to shipping materials and even office paper, product-driven companies can rack up a lot of waste and pollution.

According to Forbes, research suggests that about 46% of consumers are more likely to invest in eco-friendly, sustainably-made products. That’s why committing to a more sustainable business model is an investment worth your time and money. Some examples could be sourcing sustainable raw materials, recyclable packaging, or simply switching to a digital return/exchange process.

3. Inclusivity and Diversity

It’s essential for companies to have inclusivity and diversity values and to promote them. According to an article by Fast Company, companies with a more diverse workforce were found to be more innovative during the 2008 financial crisis than those who did not. This is likely because companies with employees knowledgeable about different backgrounds and groups can use their knowledge to better advance their company both in a business sense and beyond.

While hiring a diverse workforce is a great step forward, companies also need to convey their values in their messaging. According to a 2019 Adobe research report, in general, 38% of consumers are more likely to trust brands that do well with showing diversity in their ads. Therefore, ensuring that you are showcasing diversity and being inclusive of all individuals in your branded materials and ads can help deepen connections with consumers and internal staff.

4. Internal Culture

Consumers can learn a lot about a company by how it treats its employees. During the pandemic, the way companies were treating and supporting their staff through a time of extreme uncertainty and hardship was publicized to the masses. Some companies handled the changes ethically, but those who didn’t were called out and shamed, causing sales to plummet. As a result, consumers value employee treatment more than ever before.

Yet, in the wake of the Great Resignation, consumer opinions aren’t the only ones that matter. Employees have been quitting their jobs at an alarming rate seeking more holistic working environments. With this in mind, it’s no secret that happy employees equal happier customers and happier leaders. So, what can you do to increase employee satisfaction? You can start with flexible working hours, more paid time off/leave, and company perks ranging from coffee and donut Fridays to spot bonuses. However, opening the discussion to your employees and determining their wants and needs can help establish trust and instill long-term employee satisfaction.

Conveying empathy is more than just driving sales; but establishing a legacy for your company that can withstand the test of time. In addition, an organization that customers perceive as ethical and empathetic is more likely to garner employee and customer loyalty long-term. Are you looking to convey more empathy in your business strategy? Our team at Rizco knows how to compel your customers by presenting your business in a compassionate way. Contact us today to learn more about our services!

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