As the Australian economy opens up and restrictions lift across the nation, Adobe’s 2021 Future of Marketing research has revealed the significant impact consumer trust will have on a brand’s bottom line.
Including that when trust is eroded the ramifications will be swift and significant.
Adobe’s 2021 Future of Marketing research, conducted in August 2021, surveyed more than 600 Australian marketing leaders and practitioners and more than 1000 Australian consumers on their attitudes and preferences towards trust, personalisation and privacy.
The research revealed three in four marketers (77 per cent) rely on customer experience to engender consumer trust and then customer loyalty as a natural extension.
However, more than half (57 per cent) of Australian consumers surveyed said they quit one or more brands over the past year because a brand didn’t live up to its customer experience promises.
Duncan Egan (main photo), Adobe’s APAC vice president of marketing, said: “Building customer trust through customer experience is critical, even more so today when the entire purchasing journey is delivered digitally, regardless if you are B2C, B2B or B2-everything-in-between.
“Our research reveals what brands can do to create and maintain trust, and what trust really means to consumers in a world where some of the rules are being reset.
“What we found is, for many Australian consumers, trust in a brand is intrinsically linked to their data. How, when, and for what purpose, their data is collected and used, whether they have given consent or if they have any control over how their data is used.
“For Australian marketers, the upshot is that consumer data and trust has never been so entwined and, as a result, able to immediately impact a brand’s bottom line.”
Australian consumers ranked the most important actions brands can take to earn their trust as asking permission to collect and use their data (47 per cent), being open and transparent about how their data is used (41 per cent) and giving them complete control of their data as the third most important (38 per cent).
Egan said: “The good news for marketers is the majority of consumers will reward brands that earn their trust.
“71 per cent of Australians say they will buy more from a brand, 66 per cent will make a positive recommendation, one in two will join your loyalty program and 45 per cent will post a positive review online.
“As brands move away from third-party to first-party data strategies, trust in a brand is rising in importance and will lead one in four (24 per cent) Australians willingly sharing their data, with consent, for a better, more personalised customer experiences and offers.
“Like in life, trust is hard to earn and easy to break. When consumer trust is broken, 76 per cent of say they will immediately stop purchasing or recommending a brand, 71 per cent will unsubscribe and opt-out of all communications and interactions, 44 per cent will request a refund, and one in three (28 per cent) will post a negative review online.
When asked for examples of what would violate their trust, almost half (48 per cent) of consumers said when brands are ‘creepy’, such as tracking their mobile devices without permission or send emails, texts and communications when consent is not provided.
Further, 41 per cent said when brands ‘don’t listen’ such as sending ads or communications when they have opted-out and 38 per cent said when brands ‘are annoying’, which could be sending too many communications or burying privacy policies so they are hard to find.
Egan continued: “When it comes to building trust, consumers’ expectations aren’t complex. First and foremost, they want brands to ask permission to use their data (47 per cent) and be transparent about how it’s being used (41 per cent).
“One third also want control on how their data is being collected and monetised. This aligns with what most Australian marketers are doing to give consumers control over the data they share, clearly explain the benefits they will receive and provide the tools for customers to adjust their privacy settings.
“The majority of Australian marketers recognise the need to be forthright about how consumer data is being used and what value is being created.
“To create and maintain trust, 68 per cent of marketers said they are being open and transparent about how they use consumers’ data, 64 per cent said they ask for permission to use data, and 57 per cent believe it’s important to give consumers control on how data is used.”
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