Sincerity and authenticity are becoming increasingly important to marketing messaging and management as the trust in companies, governments, and NGOs declines.*

Illustration - computer generated figure stands in front of the choices of Brand Indifference or Brand Loyalty. The figure is selecting loyalty.Is traditional marketing losing its power? Quite possibly. These days, only 3% of people say they trust marketers and salespeople. On top of that, only 1% of millennials—the next big wave of consumers—say compelling advertising is likely to make them trust a brand.

For those engaged in the creation and/or management of marketing campaigns, these numbers are concerning. After all, if people don’t trust the claims made in marketing, how can you get them to buy your product or service? Fortunately, there may be solution: devote more time and resources to trust-based marketing.

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What Is Trust-Based Marketing?

Trust-based marketing isn’t one, specific type of marketing. Rather, it’s an overall marketing approach that seeks to elevate consumer trust in a product or brand. It comes from the understanding that, in an era when an increasing number of people distrust and/or ignore traditional marketing messages, marketers have to use new means to build trust and brand loyalty. Trust-based marketing recognizes that traditional marketing (ads, direct mail, website banners, signage, in-store displays, etc.) is best used to gain the audience’s attention. To truly motivate and capture consumers, you have to earn their trust.

How Does Trust-Based Marketing Work?

The majority of trust-based marketing happens online—it is digital. And most of these efforts focus on providing informational websites and creating a strong social media presence.

Trust-based marketing uses the expansiveness and interactivity of websites to provide consumers with the kind of honest, useful information they need to make informed buying decisions. The idea is, if your product or service is good, honesty will do much more to help than to hurt. Websites with a trust-based approach provide consumers with information like unfiltered consumer reviews, price comparisons with competitor products, and informative articles written by experts in the field. When done well, these aspects can help make your product or brand feel trustworthy in a way that a traditional ad may not. Consumer rating sites such as Yelp! are also a popular source for providing information and insights to buyers.

Social Media
In the right hands, social media can give a product or brand a personal, authentic touch. Through sites such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram, skilled marketers can respond directly to anyone talking about their product or brand. If these interactions are handled with honesty and friendliness—and solve/fully answer any consumer concerns—the interactions can help elevate the product’s or brand’s reputation. That’s because social media interactions happen in a public forum, so any interaction can be seen by a wide number of people. If an interaction is positive, it can help build an overall image of trustworthiness. This isn’t simply theoretical. Over 60% of millennial consumers say, if a brand engages them through social media, they are more likely to become loyal customers.

How Can You Learn More About Marketing?

If you want to start or advance a career in marketing, one of the best choices you can make is to earn a business degree or management degree. Specifically, a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree or an MS in Marketing can provide you with the level of knowledge you need to successfully apply complex marketing principles, like trust-based marketing, to the messaging for new products and services.

While going back to school might seem difficult, online education can make earning a Master of Business Administration or master’s in marketing much more feasible. Instead of moving to be near one of the top MBA programs or best business schools, you can enroll in a university offering online graduate degree programs and complete the majority of your master’s degree from home.

Are there other advantages to online learning? Absolutely. Not only can earning an MBA online or MS in Marketing online allow you to attend classes from home, online MBA programs and online MS degree programs offer a flexible schedule. That means you can focus on your degree program at whatever time of day is best for you, allowing you to continue working full time.

Trust-based marketing is just one way the business and marketing world are changing. When you enroll in an online MBA or MS in Marketing program, you can gain the knowledge you need to address a full range of modern marketing challenges.

Walden University is an accredited institution offering both a Master of Business Administration degree program and an MS in Marketing degree program online. Expand your career options and earn your degree in a convenient, flexible format that fits your busy life.

*Edelman, 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer Global Report, on the internet at

†HubSpot, Marketing and Sales Not Considered Trustworthy, HubSpot Global Jobs Poll, on the internet at

‡D. Schawbel, 10 New Findings About the Millennial Consumer, Forbes, on the internet at

Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission,

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