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Business Summary

Shawn Trautman has captured national attention as a businessman and Lead Instructor in over 50 top-rated DVDs including Dance Lessons 101. Shawn’s success as an instructor can be attributed to his pioneering, multi-faceted approach to learning through video and relationship building.

Dance Videos Direct, and the Shawn Trautman brand of dance instruction, has developed one of the most original and successful dance instruction methods for teaching new dancers. His Dance Collection has taught countless numbers of people how to dance in the comfort of their own homes since early 2005 and is now one of the best-selling dance lesson collections worldwide.

How to gain trust?

Gaining the trust of new customers is always a challenge, especially through an online business. But Shawn has found a way of building that trust before an order is made through promotions and product reviews. Not only are customers allowed to add testimonials and reviews on their website, Facebook page, and, but they strongly encourage it as it showcases real life application and usefulness. They regularly hear from new customers how these reviews have positively impacted perceptions, buying behavior, and have sparked consumer interest.

In 2011, Shawn Trautman Instruction launched a survey to all past customers and of those that responded, 87% listed Customer Review as the #1 reason for selecting the Shawn Trautman brand of products.

Why Trust is Important

At the end of the day, if the customers don’t trust the Shawn Trautman brand and all it stands for, then they’ve wasted their time and effort and have failed as an organization that survives because of reputation and brand recognition. Trautman knows that if they begin by meeting the expectations of their customers, then move forward with the small things to truly delight their customers and exceed their expectations, they will be well on their way to building a strong brand and an increased bond with those that engage with their products. Their goal is to create true “raving fans,” so to speak, knowing that everything else will follow. Anyone can create a product or service that customers are “satisfied” with, but it’s all about creating one that their customers are “loyal” to. This may lead to repeat purchases and strong word-of-mouth advertising, but the personal relationships that they develop are invaluable.

Developing trust means going through all the intangibles outside of the product. Whether a personal follow-up phone call, email, or some other engagement strategy, it’s the service level and intangibles that create the magical moments with customers and allows businesses to grow.

Tactics to Gain the Trust

Throughout their website, they provide customers with the comfort of knowing that their business is certified and accredited by many different organizations.

  • Four times over the last two years they have tested the site and removed the accreditation and seals on their page.  The average time that the various logos and seals were removed was less than a week and each time they experienced a significant drop in conversion rates (average drop was 36%).

  • Sample videos are provided for customers to get a preview of what is taught on the DVD’s. 77% of all survey respondents in 2011 indicated that the video previews were an influencer in their purchase decision.
  • Shawn offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all products, even if it has been opened. In the five years of offering the satisfaction guarantee, they’ve had less than 0.4% of all purchases returned.

Showcasing the Trust Earned

  • On and eBay, they have a 100% positive feedback with over 2,000 customer reviews.

  • They have been accredited with the Better Business Bureau since 2007 and have an A+ rating with zero complaints.
  • Several of the industry accreditations are featured on the right side column and footer of their website.

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