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The Role of Public Relations in Online Trust Management

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abstract Consumer trust has been identified as a key success factor of online business: A user's willingness to provide at least some personal information is a prerequisite for online transactions. Studies have shown that such a willingness is based on the perceived trustworthiness of the transaction partner. Antecedents of online trust have been studied extensively from a marketing and information systems perspective. Very little is known about the role of Public Relations in online trust management, though. This paper will present an explorative survey among 21 online businesses active in Germany. It identifies 9 core drivers of online trust from a corporate communication-perspective, and differentiates the contribution of the PR function to these drivers. Public Relations are capable of contributing to online trust in a range of significant ways, including engaging in targeted issues management, pro-actively providing crucial information, ensuring consistent corporate design, or attending to critical questions and public concerns.
   
type conference paper (English)
   
keywords Online Trust, e-Business, Public Relations, Privacy, Security
   
name of conference 60th Annual Conference of the International Communication Association (Singapore)
date of conference 22-6-2010
title of proceedings Matters of Communication
page(s) 32
publisher ICA International Communication Association (Washington)
review double-blind review
   
citation Hoffmann, C. P., Meckel, M., & von Kaenel, A. (2010). The Role of Public Relations in Online Trust Management. In Matters of Communication, pp.32. Washington: ICA International Communication Association.