Consumer Trust in This 'New World'

Not so long ago, marketers had a small handful of avenues they could use to reach customers. But digital--especially social media--transformed how consumers receive their information about brands.

Think about consumer habits: People frequently turn to brands that are recommended by peers. Research has shown this time and again-- and it's confirmed to me whenever I discuss the topic with anyone from all walks of life and all age ranges.

Social networking has accelerated peer recommendation's pace and impact argues Deepak Advani, Vice President of Business Analytics Products at IBM and a featured contributing blogger in "Power in Data"-- an exclusive sponsor program running on TheAtlantic.com.

"This means that companies will need to focus on customer experience more than before," Advani writes. "Marketing will go through a fundamental transformation where they'll spend more energy on delivering the brand promise vs. thinking of creative ways to communicate it."

But how do marketers build brand equity "in this new world"?

Understanding customers on a deeper level is key, and Advani explains that customer analytics start with data. Advani rightly advises that earning customers' trust is more important than ever. It is critical that companies are transparent and authentic in their data collection methods.

To learn more about how marketers can leverage smarter analytics and maintain customer trust, read "Power in Data" blog posts or watch videos posted on IBM's YouTube channel featuring Advani.

From the publisher

Jay Lauf is a 23-year veteran of the publishing industry with stints on both the editorial and business sides at newspapers, trade and consumer magazines, and websites. Prior to joining The Atlantic in 2008 as VP/Publisher, he was the publisher of Wired magazine.

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