Gone are the days when brands were just guarantees of product quality assuring the consumer of safety and efficacy. Nowadays, given almost universally high product quality and often strong regulation to underwrite it, brands take on myriad other roles in consumers’ minds:
- Brand is a store of trust –summarizing a range of qualities and experiences that have been promised and delivered (or not) over the years.
- “Grease” for the transaction – brands and the trust in them reduce transaction costs between buyers and sellers – they make life easier. In our information rich world we are overloaded and brands certainly are a useful shorthand for the qualities we are looking to find.
- As a guarantee of consistent values – the best brands and the organizations behind them are always consistent. Through consistency the right expectations can be set with credibility and followed up by delivery. Consistency also allows the brand to become a tool that can engage, be shared and command loyalty from its consumers.
Trust has a central role that runs through all the other characteristics of a brand. Without it, brands have to try much, much harder, which means spending more and more to convince the consumer of their credibility rather than making promises that you can ultimately deliver.
How does your brand and business rate as a store and creator of trust?
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