It shouldn’t come as a shock that car manufacturers and car dealers don’t rate very high on the scale of consumer trust. What might be a shock is that many of them are now, at long last, trying to do something about it. According to the AMCI Global-sponsored “Trusted Automotive Brand Study” the auto industry seriously lags other industries in garnering consumer trust.
The study found the “Trust Indices” of the top automotive brands are below 50 on a 100-point scale with 1 being not trusted and 100 being completely trusted. In comparison with many other consumer product and retail categories, carmakers and car dealers lag well behind. Some might find it ironic that consumers put more trust in retailers who sell them shaving cream or soft drinks than those that sell them $40,000 vehicles, but that is the current state of the business.
Click here to listen to the exclusive audio interview with trust expert Ian Beavis
Even more sobering is the fact the auto industry’s momentum seems headed in the wrong direction. This year the study saw an erosion of trust versus the findings last year, particularly among luxury brands and with both luxury and non-luxury dealers. Despite the fact consumers are seeking trustworthy brands more than ever, the auto industry appears to be backsliding.
Gaining consumers’ trust can be a big opportunity for the auto industry
While some view that as a problem, others view it as an opportunity. And prominent among the latter is Ian Beavis, AMCI Global’s chief strategy officer. You might call him a disciple of trust because he has led the charge in his organization to persuade carmakers and the dealers who represent them that establishing trust with potential buyers is the next frontier of winning the hotly competitive game of selling automobiles.
Rather than concentrating on measures of consumer satisfaction, which, Beavis said, largely quantify things that “didn’t go wrong,” he believes that making efforts to win the trust of car buyers will have immediate positive effects all around. He cited research that has proven trust is a powerful emotion that can heavily influence behavior. The net result can be very positive for all car buyers, because the efforts that will aid car manufacturers and dealers in establishing trust with customers make the car-buying process much better for those customers.
In this exclusive audio interview Beavis discusses the important issue of trust in the car business. And he cites the efforts of a number of progressive auto manufacturers who are finding the exceptional value of trustworthiness. Car-buyers are the ultimate winners in this new effort.