Building trust with your buyer -
It is not just the sales person’s job
Buyers demand trials and tests.
Operations has to get involved.
They want to meet the Head of Sales, the President too!
The time spent on pre-sales is enormous and costly. The company may not know it, but there is a problem of trust. The company is facing a trust hurdle.
For a vibrant marketplace to flourish, both the buyer and seller must believe they have access to all relevant information. When the buyer feels information is missing, fears of being ripped off or making a bad decision spike. Trying to avoid a mistake, buyers hesitate to transact. The business stalls and the market falters.
Whenever a counterparty has an incentive to conceal information, the market is susceptible to information failure. The result of asymmetrical information flows is that the buyer is put at an information disadvantage and knows it.
When it’s a matter of trust, it is time to open new information flows about your marketplace. Streaming feedback mechanisms, reputational badges, and trending data can shift the telemetry of trust.
Not only is the act of sharing data about your marketplace a sign of open and trusted intentions, but the shared insights can save a faltering market and attract business from less transparent channels. A host of research has measured the effectiveness of feedback mechanisms and reputational badges to build trusted transactions between counterparties [See Footnotes 1,2,3,4,5,6].
Frequently cited by this research is eBay’s invention of the Reputational Mechanism. By addressing asymmetric information flows, eBay protects buyers from adverse selection. The mechanism brings real-time transparency to the seller’s track record, inventory and interest levels.
This is not just an approach for B-2-C businesses. B-2-B has much to gain as well. Aggregated data can be used with client-specific overlays. Rate of change and 'watermark' levels can inform commercial markets too. In addition, the use of a reputational badges can minimize fraud and opportunistic bad actors. With the right industry-wide approach to provide collective transparency to market feedback, the need for onerous rules and regulations can be minimized or avoided.
What real-time market characteristics are you sharing with your customers?