Famous American businessman Thomas J. Watson said, “the toughest thing about the power of trust is that it's very difficult to build and very easy to destroy.” This is especially true for brands in 2017. This is according to Javier Diez-Aguirre, Vice President, Corporate Marketing, CSR & Environment, Ricoh Europe.
Consumers see over 5,000 advertisements every day. All that noise makes it difficult for brands to cut through and for consumers to know who to trust.
Trust and a sense of feeling valued are key factors impacting every brand’s bottom-line. 57 per cent of consumers reported in Ricoh commissioned research that they spend more with brands that make them feel valued. 42 per cent trust brands that personalise communications more than those that do not.
Whether a brand sells to consumers on the high-street or business decision makers there are three essential steps for developing trust through communications:
- Use data for detail - Without insight into a customer’s individual behaviour, any attempt at personalisation will fall short, or even worse, appear fake. Making communications work well isn’t an issue that one part of the organisation can solve alone. All parts of the business must look for ways to organise, manage and utilise information to create targeted customer communications.
- Know when consumers value personalisation most - 70 per cent of consumers prefer brands to focus most on their needs during and after the purchase. Give consumers as little reason to look elsewhere in the future as possible by treating your relationships with them as a continuous journey. No simple one-time transactions here.
- It’s very good to talk - simple, two-way communication is crucial in building consumer trust. People like to speak with other people. Brands must have that human touch to be seen as trustworthy. 41 per cent of consumers choose to communicate with brands by email after making a purchase. Speed is also critical. 47 per cent consider it to be a key determining factor for their future loyalty.
Fundamentally, each of these steps relies on some form of data collection and analysis. When it comes to customer communications, brands can be tempted to take a one-size-fits-all approach. But it’s the intelligent use of customer data to transform communications which can help build long term customer loyalty and trust. However, 89 per cent would drop out of the buying process if they felt a brand was too intrusive.
Clarity and transparency are integral for securing repeat custom and building trust. How a business collates, manages and uses data has never been so important – especially in a competitive digital-first world.
For more information, visit www.ricoh-europe.com/thoughtleadership