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How your brand can make or break customer trust

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In the competitive landscape of marketing, trust is a fragile asset for any brand. Building a loyal customer base starts with establishing a foundation of trust – a challenge that many marketing leaders face daily.

With the increased scrutiny on brand activities and consumer savviness, understanding brand trust and customer trust is more critical than ever in shaping a successful marketing strategy.  

What is brand trust?  

Brand trust is the level of confidence and belief that consumers have in a brand. It's the emotional connection customers develop towards a brand, based on their experiences, perceptions, and interactions.

This trust can be built or broken through various touchpoints along the customer journey, from marketing messages to product quality and customer service.  

Why is brand trust important?    

Establishing brand trust is the cornerstone of cultivating lasting customer relationships. It paves the way for repeat business, positive reviews, and brand advocacy, while also playing a pivotal role in consumer decision-making. 

A study conducted by Salsify showed that 90% of consumers are willing to pay a premium for products or services from a brand they trust. Conversely, research by Adobe revealed that 71% of global consumers won't purchase from a brand if it breaks their trust.

These insights underscore the direct impact brand trust has on a company's financial performance. 

Examples of the most trusted brands     

Some of the most trusted brands in the world have built a strong foundation of trust by consistently delivering on their brand promise and meeting customer expectations. Some examples include: 

  • Apple: Known for its sleek design, innovative technology, and excellent customer service, Apple has built a loyal customer base globally. The brand's consistent delivery of high-quality products and services has earned it a top spot on Forbes' list of World's Most Valuable Brands

  • Amazon: With its vast selection of products, fast delivery, and convenient return policies, Amazon is a household name for online shopping. The brand's focus on customer experience and continuous improvement has earned it the trust of millions of customers worldwide. 

  • Coca-Cola: A well-established brand for over a century, Coca-Cola is known for its iconic logo and consistent product quality. Its strong branding and marketing have contributed to making it one of the most trusted beverage brands globally. 

  • Microsoft: Another top-ranked brand on Forbes' list, Microsoft has built a reputation for delivering reliable and innovative products and services. Its commitment to ethical business practices and data privacy has further enhanced its brand trust among customers. 

How can your brand build customer trust?    

Building trust with customers may be challenging, but it's essential to succeed in today's competitive market.

Here are some ways your brand can build and maintain customer trust: 

Be honest and transparent 

Honesty is the foundation of trust. Be open and transparent with your customers about your brand, products, and services. When mistakes happen, communicate openly and take responsibility; this shows integrity and can even enhance customer trust. 

Focus on quality and reliability 

Deliver high-quality products and services to build a reputation for reliability and excellence. Poor product quality can quickly erode trust and damage your brand's image.  

Present consistent branding and messaging 

Creating a cohesive brand identity with consistent messaging to nurture trust among customers. Make sure your branding and messaging are aligned across all touchpoints, delivering a unified message that accurately represents your brand. 

Engage with customers 

Building relationships with customers through regular engagement builds trust and loyalty. Listen to their feedback, respond to comments and reviews, and make them feel valued. Customers who feel connected to a brand are more likely to trust it. 

Be socially responsible 

Consumers today are more conscious of a brand's impact on society and the environment. 78% of consumers feel that sustainability is important and are often willing to pay more for eco-friendly brands.

Showing your commitment to social responsibility can help build trust with customers who share similar values.  

How to build brand trust on social media        

Social media is an excellent platform for nurturing brand trust. With millions of users, it provides a platform for brands to showcase their values, engage with customers and build trust.

Here are some tips for building brand trust on social media: 

  • Monitor social media channels: Regularly monitor your social media channels for any negative comments or reviews. Responding promptly and addressing issues shows that you care about your customers' experiences and are willing to take steps towards improvement. 

  • Be authentic: Be genuine and transparent in your posts, captions, and interactions with followers. Avoid using automated responses or generic messages; instead, personalize your communication to build a stronger connection with customers.  

  • Foster communities: Social media is an ideal platform to create loyal communities around your brand. Get your customers to share their experiences, opinions, and feedback, creating a sense of belonging among community members. 

  • Use platforms that promote reviews and testimonials: Platforms like G2 and Trustpilot provide social proof to potential customers. Encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews to highlight your credibility and trustworthiness. 

  • Partner with influencers: Collaborating with influencers who align with your brand values can help reach a wider audience and build credibility for your brand. Choose influencers that your target audience trusts, and whose values align with yours. 

How to not break customer trust 

While building trust takes time, breaking customer trust can happen in an instant. Here are some things to avoid that could damage your brand's trust with customers: 

Ignoring data privacy and regulations  

Ensure your brand meets industry regulations and ethical standards. Neglecting this can damage your reputation. With growing data privacy concerns, handle customer information carefully and transparently.

Pay particular attention to marketing channels like email signatures that impact customer trust

Not being transparent during crises  

In times of crisis, communication is key. Brands that are not open and honest when dealing with issues may lose the trust of their customers, leading to speculation and doubt.  

Pandering and not being authentic  

Avoid jumping on the bandwagon of popular trends or causes solely for marketing purposes. Customers quickly spot disingenuous tactics and may perceive them as being insincere. 

Taking part in political hot topics  

Unless your brand’s mission is politically driven, involvement in polarizing debates can alienate part of your customer base. Respect your customers’ diverse opinions and avoid taking sides on issues that may not directly affect your brand.   

Not adapting to change    

Not staying up-to-date with market trends or customer needs can make a brand appear out of touch and unreliable. Continually monitor shifts in the market and listen to customer feedback, adapting your strategies accordingly.  

Using email signatures to build brand trust  

A subtle yet effective way to nurture trust is through professional email signatures. The signature is an extension of your brand and adds credibility to your communication.

With the right email signature management tool, you can ensure consistency in branding across all employee emails. The layout, design, and content of your email signatures can affect customer trust; therefore, it's vital to keep them up-to-date and professional. 

Using Exclaimer provides a consistent and cohesively branded communication experience with every email. This consistency reinforces professionalism and reliability without any heavy lifting.   

So, end every email on a high note with an email signature that promotes trust and showcases your brand values.

Get yourself an online demonstration of the Exclaimer platform or take part in an interactive product tour.  

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