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BizReport : Blogs & Content archives : December 11, 2008

Forrester: Consumers don't trust corporate blogs

Corporate blogs and brand social network profiles aren't trusted as much as other sources of information such as print newspapers, Internet portals and personal blogs, according to a recent report from Forrester Research.

by Helen Leggatt

At the top of the trustworthiness scale is "email from people you know" with over three-quarters (77%) putting their faith in this kind of communication, proving that word-of-mouth is as powerful as it's ever been.

Consumer reviews were cited as the next most trustworthy source of information (60%) followed by portals/search engines (50%).

Corporate blogs and corporate social network profiles both came in at the bottom of the scale with just 16% and 18% of consumers putting any trust in them.

One of the reasons that consumers hold no truck with corporate blogs, or a brand's presence on a social network, is that they are often seen to exist with only one goal in mind - to push products and services to consumers.

To increase their trustworthiness, corporate blogs must be more consumer-oriented with less focus on the gloss and hype of sales and more on building a relationship with consumers.

As Josh Bernoff recently blogged, "This means that if you blog, your goal should be to create a blog about which people say "I like that - I don't think of it as a company blog." For the most part, that's a hurdle you need to jump to gain their trust. I don't mean to hide who is writing the blog. I mean it has to be more about your customers than it is about you."

Tags: consumer reviews, corporate blogs, Forrester Research, Josh Bernoff, personal blogs, trust, trustworthiness

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