E-commerce and public opinion: a matter of relationship

By Thamyris Barbosa

Meetings with specialized journalists may boost the reputation of companies and interfere on sales

Coming into a store, shaking the seller’s hand, swiping the credit card. This is a routine that is less and less part of the consume habits of the Brazilian population. The facility, convenience, attractive prices and the possibility of checking evaluations about the product have made the buyer ally to the e-commerce world.

For those who represent an online company, reputation is the key word that will attract or move away a potential client. After all, who has never researched on specialized websites before purchasing a new smartphone? Or has searched references about that recently-arrived foreign company to learn whether they offer products of good quality? In fact, there’s nothing worst for an e-commerce than the absence of information about the already-commercialized products.

E-commerce does not have a face, nor the name of a seller. And, if on one hand that optimizes negotiations, on the other it may not offer the required credibility to close a deal. In times like these, the opinion of a third party is important. If this analysis comes from a specialist in the field, even better. Thenceforth a necessity of keeping a close contact with journalists and opinion leaders of the field arises. To this end, there are a few techniques in the communication field. And one of the most efficient is known as relationship meetings.

As the name implies, a relationship meeting focuses on bringing the brand closer to the specialized journalist. Through lunches, dinners or even a visit to the company, the representative will be able to point out the solidity of the brand, the quality of the products, differentials and many other matters that are interesting for both parties. The journalist will also have the chance to make questions and better understand the processes.

However, one must be prepared. Even though the strategy may be positive, the company’s spokesperson will need special training to reinforce the strength of the company and respond with confidence to the questioning that might arise. This is mostly because a badly conducted meeting might have a reverse effect and stain the name of the brand for many years. That’s why it’s essential to search for communication professionals that are used to dealing with the press for specialized orientations. The relationship meeting may be a very strong weapon when one wishes to construct or establish an image, but it’s important watch out for every step of this technique so doors are not shut and potential customers are not shoved way.