Survey: Value, customer service keys to brand trust

What causes people to leave brands behind? Research conducted by Tenet Partners found that customers must feel like the brand cares.

PR pros and marketers spend a whole lot of time trying to convince customers that the brands they represent are trustworthy. Often, it takes months or perhaps years of campaigning to persuade someone to take the plunge and give a product or service a try.

It takes very little time for a customer to decide a product is not for them, however. A new survey of 1,000 consumers conducted by Tenet Partners found two key reasons for why customers ditch brands: Sixty-seven percent of respondents said they quit brands in part because they felt they weren’t getting their money’s worth, and 56 percent said a major problem was poor customer service.

The former is a complex mix of price, product quality, competitor offerings, and so forth, but the customer service piece seems straightforward. In brief, it pays off to be helpful and kind to your customers.

“It takes years and significant financial investment to build a strong consumer brand, but all that time, money and effort is wasted every time a customer has a bad interaction,” said Hampton Bridwell, CEO of Tenet, the new marketing firm that resulted from the merger of CoreBrand and Brandlogic. “Over time, those are costs companies cannot afford.”

The survey report also offered up this piece of data: Brand value increases by 40 percent when customers perceive brands as knowledgeable, caring, and helpful.

The researchers asked respondents to rank a handful brands on a scale of brand value, with Apple and American Express ranking highly, and CapitalOne and Sprint coming in at the bottom.

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