Worthy Intentions on the Road to Brand Trust

Andreia Gabriela ANDREI, Adriana ZAIȚ

Abstract


Nowadays, technology enables businesses to make transactions without human interaction, which increases their operations, but also erodes the personal nature of commerce and brand loyalty, in most of the cases. Independent lines of research have warned about this phenomenon, pointing out that the lack of consumer trust represents the main cause of losing brand loyalty. Stressing on the benefits of updating branding practices by integrating results from other social sciences, our paper explores an interdisciplinary literature. The paper presents recent branding-related findings and how are they supported or not by results from social psychology and behavioral economics. It highlights two opposite views and theoretical contradictions, and extracts a hypothesis that would be conceptually supported by some convergent opinions and facts. Arguing why an effective branding process, meant to achieve both consumer trust and sales objectives, should change the focus from profit-maximization onto relationship building, we hypothesize that brands should reveal worthy intentions prior to competence. Since our paper is of conceptual nature, further empirical studies are needed to test the hypothesis. Yet, the present paper offers an integrative view of the consumer underlying behavior, as revealed by recent results from different social sciences, discussing the potential impact of worthy intentions and competences on trust building, and consequently, on the brand construction process.

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References


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