Time was before the advent of social media, corporate communications programs were well organized. You had your corporate brand strategy and position which was then communicated via well understood channels such as investor relations, PR, advertising and so forth. In this well oiled marketing machine, individual corporate thought leaders were used to support the corporate message and in this model the goal was clear: create a clear brand value proposition at a corporate level that customers would trust to do business with. The ultimate top down model.
That was then. This is now and the model is turned upside down.
In today’s social networked world, trust is not generated by the corporate communications machine. It is generated by a dynamic I call the Law of One — the brand proposition is carried by an individual who can create trust on behalf of the brand.
In the new socially connected world – individuals are far more effective at conveying trust in social networks than corporate spokespeople or an army of communication specialists. In this new world, non employees or line employees can be the most vocal and valuable trust creators.
Tapping into this dynamic requires a new approach commensurate with the opportunity. For example, creating a programmatic approach to systematically create personal brands for company “experts” or thought leaders or front line employees integrating existing company social networks, affinity networks with a coordinated approach to content distribution. For non employee trust champions, driving these engaged individuals to a corporate sponsored community driven by a shared interest is a key way to harness and leverage the Law of One within the social network experience.
The new corporate branding machine – creating trust one person at a time.