When we interact with companies, we expect careful handling of our data – only then do we engage in the exchange of information. However, trust is more than just a physical or digital transaction: on the net, it also includes the expectation that companies will take appropriate security measures to minimise any risks to the buyer as part of the transaction in digital marketing agency. Digital trust” is the term we use today to describe the trust that consumers place in companies that store their data. According to Accenture, digital trust is “today’s currency and a key feature of tomorrow’s high performers legacy.
Companies as customer data managers
Every interaction between consumers and businesses generates data that is collected and stored – a real gold mine: Contact information, bank details, location data and purchasing behaviour. According to a survey by global technology company Pitney Bowes, 76 percent of companies in Germany, the UK and France have collected more personal information in the last five years than ever before.
Both public and private companies hold large amounts of confidential information. Many consumers don’t give it much thought, such as storing their bank details for faster online shopping or indicating their birthday to receive a discount voucher as a gift. This requires trust in the companies in question – but according to the study, this is declining. The companies surveyed expect consumers to be less willing to share their data in the future.
Companies must use customer data prudently
Companies have a moral and legal obligation to protect the information they collect. They must use the data sensibly in order to understand customer habits, gain further insights and design their communication appropriately and personalised for the situation.It is the duty of a company to earn the trust of consumers. The following ten tips will help.
Customers see through dishonest communication. A furniture company recently stated three months in a row that my shipment would come the following month – and I relied on this information. But after another three months of saying, “Thank you for your understanding and patience,” it became clear to me that meeting the delivery date was as likely as a unicorn on my doorstep. Trust in the company was gone.
Let your customers know how you use their data. First Direct Bank told 1.3 million customers that they would be using voice recognition software in the future. On the way to “biometric banking”, a profile will be created based on this data. Since customers no longer have to enter passwords, telephone enquiries would be made easier. Customers can of course object to this process, which brings me to the next point:
Give your customers a choice
Regulation (EU-DSGVO) will come into force, bringing with it new requirements in terms of consumer consent. E-mail and SMS marketing require an opt-in, while telephone and mail advertising require an opt-out. Don’t hide consumer options in the small print.
Use consumer information for highly personalised communications
The Pitney Bowes study showed that consumers are willing to share more information if they receive tailored offers and advertising. For example, 53 percent of respondents in Germany said they would like to share hobbies and interests if they received more targeted information.
Recognize patterns in consumer data
Use the available data, for example, to get to know consumers’ shopping habits and provide them with suitable (seasonal) offers.
Realize Omnichannel communication
Ensure that technology, people and processes deliver the same high-quality user experience across all digital and physical channels.
Provide an outstanding customer experience
Structure your business to be responsive, agile and customer-focused. Trust is lost faster than gained and even a single negative experience can strongly influence a customer’s opinion. If this experience is particularly negative, he could also publish his displeasure on digital platforms and put the company in a bad light.
More and more companies are introducing regular customer feedback and encouraging their customers to write reviews. Today, numerous platforms on the Internet offer appropriate solutions. This demonstrates a culture of transparency and openness – and strengthens the perception that you take your customers’ opinions seriously.
Let customers tell your story
Give your customers a voice where it’s possible – in user reports, references and digital networks, for example. Because when a customer speaks for you, it strengthens your credibility and authenticity.
Keep to the law – and tell your customers how
The EU DSGVO will have a huge impact on how companies collect and store data. Explain to your customers what this means for them and what changes you should expect. Trust is a very valuable asset in today’s digital world. If you win this digital trust, you and your company will quickly feel the positive effects.