Do You Know Your Companies Trust Factor?

In a recent study Neuroeconomist Paul Zak shows that social networking is comparable to falling in love. In his study he looked at the level of oxytocin in subjects blood when using social Tweeting. Oxytocin is sometimes called the generosity hormone, or the cuddle hormone. When levels of oxytocin increase people tended to be more trusting as well as more generous and when people were trusted or treated generously their levels also increased. A similar increase was found when Tweeting. In the study they compared it to the same levels that a groom had at his wedding, or when you have dinner with close friends.

Although the study is admittedly not thoroughly conclusive, it does bring up a number of interesting questions for business. If companies can use social media such as Twitter or Facebook to engage with people (customers and potential customers), can they get a double whammy? If people using social media already have a higher level of oxytocin and they feel trust and generosity from a company… how would that help them sell their product? Companies that can use social media to cash in on “social capital,” will see their trust factor grow, which will in turn increase their “social capital”, which will ultimately help grow their business. Companies that don’t use social media there’s a chance they will miss the boat and miss out on a great opportunity to develop trust with their clients and prospects.

I had an interesting experience today when in a cafe someone recognized me from Twitter @BbeS. This happens from time to time. Each time this happens there is instantly a trust factor and a familiarity with that person. Now, even better is when that happens as I walk into a sales meeting with a prospective client, or when attending a networking event!

The video below is a brief overview of the study.
You can also read the full article on the Fast Company
Social Networking Affects Brains Like Falling in Love

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