When Rohini Contractor looked at the impact of mobile on the customer experience she highlighted the importance of trust in attracting customers to a brand. Personal recommendations online and offline build trust.
The success of sites like www.tripadvisor.com shows how consumers will make purchase decisions based on the recommendations of people they don’t know because they would rather trust an individual than a brand. But there is something else at work here. Forrester calls it "benevolence", i.e. the willingness of people to give something without expecting something in return. People post on Tripadvisor, not for some kind of reward but because they know it will help other people like them – and encourage others to make context-rich reviews available for the benefit of all.
It’s this incentive-free action that builds trust. The trouble is that most organisations baulk at giving things away free. It is counter-intuitive for commercial organisations.
In my opinion it is the secret to success in today’s Recommendation Generation. What could your organisation give away to help earn the trust of target customers?