Trust in Market Relationships

Trust in Market Relationships

Sandro Castaldo

Trust in Market Relationships illustrates that the importance of trust in a commercial arena has intensified as markets have become more complex. As business relationships become ever critical for a firm’s economic results in highly competitive markets, and trust represents the basic platform for the development of successful long-term collaborations.

Chapter 4: Trust in Marketing

Sandro Castaldo

Subjects: business and management, marketing, organisation studies


INTRODUCTION In the first years of the last decade, initial studies specifically dedicated to the systematic exploration of the trust concept appeared in marketing literature. Before that time, the term trust appeared in several works, without any precise definition of its meaning.1 Today, the situation is quite different, to the point that the quantity and variety of works and approaches on this subject require a further analytical effort such as the one proposed in this chapter. Initially, the theme has generated particular interest among those streams of research that are more focused on analysing market relationships in a business to business context. This is especially prevalent in sales management, where special attention has been paid to the relationship’s interpersonal dimension; the literature dealing with industrial goods marketing; and the contributions on relational dynamics in distribution channels. More recently, some works related to consumer marketing have considered new trust concept ramifications. These contributions are linked to the effort of developing consumer-specific constructs, such as customer satisfaction, loyalty, brand image and, more generally, brand equity. Often these works are contextualized within the reality of services and retailing, fostering the evolution of service and retail marketing. The emergence of digital channels has allowed the verification the construct’s central role in terms of development of computer-mediated market relationships, starting a stream of research centred on e-trust. Considering trust relevance in determining market relationships, this chapter analyses the modes by which each study domain has dealt with...

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