Ultimately, what all companies sell is trust and tumultuous times make earning and keeping that trust the most important thing a business can do.
This can be seen in a recent Salesforce report which found:
- 88% of customers say trust is more important in times of change.
- 74% of customers say communicating honestly and transparently is more important now than before the pandemic.
How to earn it. The report, which surveyed over 13,000 consumers and nearly 4,000 business buyers across 29 countries, laid out what organizational actions build trust. Honest and transparent communication topped the list, followed by responsible use of customer data, treating customers as people – not as numbers, and resolving issues and communicating proactively.
Business gets the benefit of the doubt. The good news for marketers is that people favor businesses over most other institutions. The Salesforce survey found 52% of customers say they generally trust companies – up from 48% in 2020. Further, 68% of customers now trust organizations to tell the truth – up from 59% two years ago. Trends like this are a positive sign businesses are moving in the right direction.
This is in line with what other global surveys report. An Edelman survey of 28 nations found 61% of people trust business, that’s 9% more than trust the government. (In the US, it depends on the size of the business. Small business has the highest rating of any major institution – with 70% saying they trust it “quite a lot”; for big business only 18% say they do, according to a Gallup poll.)
Why we care. While people may think marketing is handled by a particular department (yours), it is actually the sum total of all the company’s behaviors. Consumers want to trust the companies they buy from. It is up to marketing to make the rest of the organization understand they are also responsible for earning or losing that trust. It’s up to martech in particular to be gathering the data to show what the business is doing right and what it needs to do better.
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