The Value of Trust


As leaders and entrepreneurs, we must choose not to hide behind a faceless brand, but value the trust our customers have placed in us

This week, Facebook released a “Widely Viewed Content” report. They claim it is to increase transparency and allow the public to see what is displayed broadly on the platform.

Separately, T-Mobile announced that important account data about millions of customers had been hacked and released to the highest bidder on the black market.

In the case of T-Mobile, the reaction to the news has been a collective yawn; even by those whose data was breached and subsequently released to hackers. Even more alarming, T-Mobile’s stock prices went up shortly after the breach was announced.

Following the Facebook “report”, information quickly surfaced indicating that previous editions of the report were buried internally (or the content of the released report had been altered) because they showed Facebook in an unfavorable light.

These two unrelated incidents share a commonality: trust.

Data breaches and hacks are now announced so frequently that brands hardly worry about a dent in their equity – monetary or otherwise. In the case of Facebook, their brand is so battered by questionable “transparency” reports, they are hardly even trusted. They are widely accepted as brand propaganda.

As smaller brands, we must hold ourselves to a higher standard. Not only because we are smaller, but because we are better. We cannot hide behind a large, faceless brand. Instead, each of the relationships we have with our customers is meaningful.

There is value in the trust our customers place in us.

Our job is to consistently show up, consistently do the right thing, and consistently value the relationship.

Don’t rely on questionable transparency reports to convince the world you are good. And don’t shrug off a data breach impacting millions of your customers.

Instead, value the trust they have in you.

All the best,

-Shaun


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