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Trust can be built up quickly using your unique messaging, tools and social networks. But it can also be destroyed just as quickly when it comes to the openness of the web.

If something goes wrong (think about the iPhone 4.0 reception debacle), EVERYONE is going to hear about it – and in multiple forms of media. Of course, a smaller brand may have a lesser world-wide attention than Apple. The “wrong” may be an inadvertent post to a competitor, that somebody made a stink about internally. There are many different flavors. Here, I point to external brands and social media mistakes.

But, the truth is, you are a global company, even if you are local. People can reach, touch, and see you easily, if they want to.

Should you hide or embrace it? Some company cultures (believe it or not) try to stay way from the inevitable. (meaning, you cannot or should not hide).

What should you do when a message or conversation starts taking off on its own? (without your control)

So while you might think you need to be free of mistakes, this isn’t the most realistic goal to have. We’re all going to make mistakes. Learning how to handle them is the best plan of attack.

How To Stop Trust Loss – Your Credibility.

When something goes wrong, it can feel much like water going down a drain. You will probably lose a few customers before you stop the water completely from draining out.

But the key is to stop the water from flooding out as much as possible. There are many ways to ensure that you are not only fixing the problem, but also keeping your credibility.

1. Acknowledge the problem

Be willing to speak up and say that you made a mistake. Avoiding the truth makes you look like your intentions aren’t focused on the customer.

2. Fix the problem and let customers know how

Immediately fix the problem and then let the customer know how you fixed it and what will be done in the future to ensure that sort of problem won’t be repeated.

3. More than make up for mistakes

This should go without saying, but you need to make up for all mistakes not only with a refund, but also with some sort of reparations. Come up with something that the customer isn’t expecting and give it to them. Leave a good impression of your willingness to reestablish trust.

Trust is fleeting, but it is necessary to be a standout company in the online world. Your name / brand is what brings you customers and profits, and it makes sense that you want to keep your name as shiny as possible.

And your brilliance begins with being trustworthy. People do business with people they know, like & trust.


You will need to create a policy guide to help your internal staff understand the process too. It’s guide, not a  law in most cases.

What do you think?


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Entrepreneur Magazine says Jon Rognerud is one of the most sought-after Digital Marketing Experts. His clients extend from high-end brands and middle-tier businesses in both B2B and B2C. His SEO website optimization book, "The Ultimate Guide to Optimizing Your Website" from Entrepreneur Press is in bookstores now.