Mind Readings: Brand is Trust

Warning: this content is older than 365 days. It may be out of date and no longer relevant.

Mind Readings: Brand is Trust

The role of brand is to create trust. Brand is a series of experiences and the cumulative impact, and ultimately the outcome we’re after is trust. Thus every bit of marketing that touches branding MUST be about building trust for it to succeed in the big picture.

Mind Readings: Brand is Trust

Can’t see anything? Watch it on YouTube here.

Listen to the audio here:

Download the MP3 audio here.

Machine-Generated Transcript

What follows is an AI-generated transcript. The transcript may contain errors and is not a substitute for watching the video.

Christopher Penn 0:15

In this episode, let’s talk about brand.

What is brand? The best definition I’ve heard is by a comedian named Jay Frank back in 2006.

He had a show back then, before YouTube shows and stuff before pot well was contemporaneous early podcasts.

But in one of the episodes of the show, which was called the show, he said brand is the emotional aftertaste of a series of experiences.

Brand is the emotional aftertaste of a series of experiences.

And that expression has stuck with me for the last 16 years is such a powerful statement.

He went on to say, that’s why you can sell grandma’s cookies, which has an emotional aftertaste.

And that old people’s cookies is the level about that 16 years later.

That’s brand new, there’s an emotional aftertaste.

So what is the role of brand? And what is the role of that emotional aftertaste.

We talked a lot about in marketing, branding, and brand campaigns and brand building and stuff.

But what does that actually mean? I would submit that the role of brand is to create trust.

Brand is a series of experiences.

That emotional aftertaste and the cumulative impact.

But the emotional aftertaste we’re after is trust affinity, right? Ultimately, a transaction, a sale revenue, a customer is a statement of trust, I open up my wallet and I give you money.

And I give you this money.

And you give me the service or this product.

Ultimately, I’m trusting you with this representation of my time and effort, right? These things.

Right, these things, oh, the fifth column calls them power coupons, which I think is a kind of a fun way of thinking about them.

But these things are your time, your knowledge, your effort, all condensed and flattened into a two dimensional object, mostly two dimensional object, right? This is your effort.

In the transaction in the sale, I am essentially saying I’m going to take this thing that is a representation of my hard work, and I’m going to give it to you.

I’m going to give it to you.

And in return, you’re going to give me something that is commensurate in value with this thing, right? If I give you this thing for a loaf of bread, right? This in the United States of America, this would be a very expensive loaf of bread, a loaf of bread is around three to 42 If it’s not very good bread.

And you can get some loaves of bread and the artisanal loaves of bread for like five or six or 7 depending on where you’re where you live and where you shop.

But 10 bucks would be a very expensive loaf of bread.

And so I’m trusting you that if I buy your artisanal, handmade, organic, non GMO loaf of bread, that the value I receive in return, the experience of eating your bread will be worth what I paid for it.

Right? I trust you.

And if I eat your loaf of bread, and it’s no better than the2 supermarket loaf of bread, then that trust is broken.

Your your product service did not live up to what I paid for it.

Now if that loaf of bread cost $1 instead of 10.

I would probably feel pretty good about right like Hey, I got the same quality as the supermarket but it was half the cost the supermarket I would feel happy instead of unhappy because the transaction was commensurate with a transaction was a better value.

So all sales is ultimately about trust a sale is an expression of trust.

A brand than is the echo of that trust, every experience that I have with a brand either reinforces the trust that the brand has or diminishes it.

Right, it reinforces or it diminishes the gaming company raise Sir, makes a lot of really good gear, right? This mouse that I use really, really nice mouse.

I have come to trust them for their gear.

I got the

Christopher Penn 5:17

I don’t remember, this is called now select the backbone, but it’s a gaming controller for your phone.

I’m not as impressed with this.

Right? This is okay.

But it’s not the experience that I have with this.

So in this sale in this transaction, my level of trust in the brand has gone down a little right? series of experiences and the emotional aftertaste, the emotional aftertaste, this product is mild satisfaction.


It does what it say it says it did.

But it doesn’t feel very good.

And it’s missing some features that’s competitors have.

Do that enough.

And my trust in the brand overall will go down.

So if we want our brands to do well, we have to build trust in them.

We have to create trust, by many cases giving more value than we’re taking, right? If I as the customer give you this, this flattened representation of my efforts 10 of it, and you give me what I perceive to be $20 of value back.

Trust goes up, trust goes up like wow, that was a really good bargain.

That was a really good deal.

I feel like the exchange was in my favor.

I give you this and I get 5000 value back trust goes down, right.

And the emotional aftertaste is sour, or bitter, and the bitter aftertaste of a transaction.

So how do you put this into play? The first most important thing you need to be doing is doing market research and asking people how do you feel about our brand? What is the likelihood that you’re going to purchase from us in the next 90 days? That is NPS scores, Net Promoter Scores? Use a question all the time.

That is a proxy question for trust.

How much do you trust us? If you intend to purchase from us in the next 90 days you trust us? Because otherwise you wouldn’t be doing that? asking somebody? What is your intent to recommend our brand in the next 90 Days to a colleague or friend? Again, that’s a that is actually a bigger trust question.

Because now, we are asking, are you willing to put your own reputation on the line to recommend us? It’s a big trust question.

If all of your work in marketing and branding is about name recognition, and stuff, and you’re not thinking about whether or not you invoke trust, you might want to pause and say, Do we invoke trust? What does that look like? How do we measure it that’s unique to our company, its products and services? And then how can we increase the trust that we engender within someone? If you answer that question, a lot of the other things that you think about with brand like brand awareness and stuff will kind of take care of themselves.

I mean, you’ll still want to do promotion stuff, but word of mouth is timeless.

Word of mouth has been around since we could speak right since words could come out of our mouths.

And it is still the most powerful marketing channel there is.

Word of mouth is powered by trust.

Sales is powered by trust and your brand is powered by trust.

So make sure that you are behaving in a trustworthy way.

That’s it for this episode.

Thanks for tuning in.

If you’d like this video, go ahead and hit that subscribe button.

You might also enjoy:

Want to read more like this from Christopher Penn? Get updates here:

subscribe to my newsletter here

AI for Marketers Book
Take my Generative AI for Marketers course!

Analytics for Marketers Discussion Group
Join my Analytics for Marketers Slack Group!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This