And as any philosophy major will tell you, there are two schools of faith - rational faith and emotional faith.
- Rational faith is the individual's conclusion to place faith in a subject after of a period of inquiry or a faith building experience.
- Emotional faith is the trust one invests based on an emotional connection one feels.
So where does transparency play?
Transparency will build rational faith, but it does not necessarily create emotional connectivity. Rational faith drives one to trust, it drives understanding. But without an emotional investment, I don't know that it leads one to believe in a brand or product. Rationality will rarely translate into passion.
Apple locks their doors, creating their own modern day iron curtain, and yet advocates flock to the brand in a very social manner. This non-transparent strategy however, may not work for your brand, as chances are you're brand may not have quite the loyal following of an Apple. Because Apple users are passionate.
Key Takeaway: rational faith can be manufactured by participation and transparency. Trust can be built. But emotional faith, generating fiery passion that bubbles over in the social media sphere - that only comes from something truly remarkable.
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Food For Thought: So where does this leave social media marketers? Can we manufacture passion around a dispassionate brand? Is it time that we began focusing less on transparency, and more on authentic passion? Could it be that authentic passion is what makes Apple a success?