Some sectors and markets will always have a negative stigma attached to them and this can be attributed to a number of factors. Unregulated markets such as alternative investments are one example, with cryptocurrency presently being the most prominent. Others (for obvious reasons) would be legal representation, solicitors, debt collection agencies, private car parking enforcement, energy brokers… the list is pretty long.
It’s for less obvious reasons that a market generates a negative reputation that peaks our interest; it has nothing to do with them being unpopular services, a lack of regulations or disproportionate costs. Rather, it’s the emotional response the products or services invoke.
When the purchase of a product or instruction of a service has an emotional attachment to it, our expectations increase massively and at times it can be very hard for these standards to be met. If they are not, then of course this will result in a negative reputation as the only ones talking about you will be those who are left feeling disappointed.
One common emotional purchase which I’m sure we’ve all made is flowers. Quite often we buy flowers specifically for delivery to mark an important day or anniversary. It’s something we have emotionally invested in and if those flowers don’t arrive at exactly the right time or in anything less than pristine condition the backlash is significantly more charged. It might not be our biggest expense of the year - let alone the month or even the week - but its means a great deal to us and as a result it invokes an emotional response.
A larger outlay but another very significant emotional purchase is our annual vacation. It is something we save for all year; we talk to our friends about it and we look forward to it so much. Excitement and anticipation are just some of the emotions we feel when we think of spending time with our families on a beautiful beach under a baking sun. If the holiday doesn’t live up to our expectations, our negative experiences will once again very likely find themselves online.
In our own eyes we become something more than just a traditional consumer when we are buying something so personal. We trust those who are responsible with our emotions, which are attached to the purchase. It’s not like buying a new pen; we don’t have any emotional attachment to it and at the end of the day it’s just a pen. If you would consider your services or products to be an emotional purchase, trust and customer service are paramount to building a positive and robust online reputation. The customer’s emotions should always be taken into consideration.
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