I think the third rule of Steps to Cultivating Online Trust is perhaps the most important rule for companies to remember. Allowing customers to gain a knowledge of a company, product, or brand is the most powerful way for companies to build a strong relationship with their customers. If customers have a positive experience with a company and they are able to learn the companies value for themselves, because they trust their judgement most, they will fully trust in the company. Each rule in this article asks the company to act genuinely with their customers. Company’s that show a concern for the customers well being and understanding will show the most positive results in their relation with customers.
A lot of this read like basic customer service attributes. Obviously there are companies out there that don’t follow these steps and probably should, but for the most part I feel like most companies do abide by these steps as much of the companies I’m interested in tend to have these traits.
After reading this article I have to say that the most important part of gaining the consumers trust is to help them gain knowledge of your company. By doing this it allows you to begin building a bond with the consumer from the start, and is more effective when this initial experience is positive. I think that the third rule of Steps to Cultivation Online Trust is the most important rule to follow, for it allows your company to come across in a better light when talking to your consumers. It allows the consumers to have greater trust in your company, feel like they are cared for, and allows them to see that you have a passion for what you do.
I agree with Kelly above. I think that educating through experience is simple yet brilliant. Any company can list the things they do that make them a good company, but this will come off as standard and one sided. Much like looking at reviews of electronics cars you are planning to buy, the most powerful praise comes from those that have already purchased the product. By creating an online community showing that the company has helped people that are in your very situation, building trust is easy to create.
I think that the advice given in this article is so valuable to not only companies, but anyone who wants to have a presence online and on social networking sites. Networks like Facebook and Twitter lure people into speaking about themselves in ways that may not be great for public reputation. Social media is on the rise in terms of popularity and has shown to be a great platform for many companies and small businesses. The tips given in this article illustrate how companies can fully take advantage of social media while still being true to their brand and their customers. I agree with Nate, when it comes to purchasing from certain companies, customer reviews are one of the first things I look like. Companies that can cultivate a trusting relationship with their consumers can improve their odds of good customer satisfaction.
With so much emphasis on internet accessibility in todays business world, a companies webpage is just as important as their office building. The response and the reception that a customer receives from an email or online message is just as important as one from a telephone operator or a receptionist. I believe that customers are more apt to try out a new company when they read positive reviews on the internet and are confident in their online infrastructure.
When I first read this article it made me think about all the companies in which I trust with my business and how they follow these steps accordingly. It also made me think of my work place. I work at Starbucks and we are constantly being trained on how to create exceptional customer service, to connect with customers through real conversation rather than small talk and to make a good impression so they will come back. I think that Starbucks is one of the top companies that implement these rules in their everyday interactions with customers and that is part of the reason that people continue to come back. I think that the first rule, acknowledging with empathy, may be the most important. It allows customers to see that you really care, not just because you are getting paid to do so but because you genuinely want them to have a good experience, in my case, to get the drink they want and to have a good day. I think that any successful and well respected company follows these rules to a tee.
Another example I can think of is TIDE. Deb Morrison talked with us about brands and which ones have good reputations. TIDE goes above and beyond to create customer satisfaction. We see this true in the example she discussed of Hurricane Katrina. TIDE drove semi trucks to New Orleans with washers and dryers so people could wash their clothing. This is not something the company was required to do but rather something they wanted to do to show their commitment to the community. This demonstrates the fourth rule, keeping the momentum going. Through this act of genuine kindness TIDE continued their ongoing respected reputation and demonstrated to customers that this company will be there for them in a time of need. All of these rules together create a strong, well respected and trusted company and I believe that both of the companies mentioned strive to do this everyday.
One thing that came to me when reading this article is how the internet has brought accountability into the realm of the business world. Before the internet there were no blogs or sites where people could share stories about positive or negative experiences with a company. Now that companies know potential customers can find this information online, it forces companies to have great customer relations with its online community. It is more incentive for companies like stumble upon to go out of their way for customer service because they know what they lost in time and money will be made back just from the publicity of the event.
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Depicts 320,000 light bulbs, equal to the number of kilowatt hours of electricity wasted in the United States every minute from inefficient residential electricity usage (inefficient wiring, computers in sleep mode, etc.).