Trust. Companies want it; consumers are cautious with it; and its role in social business is significant. Social media, social business, social collaboration - these are all aspects of digital maturity within an organisation, and increasing important in a hyper-networked society. The connection points have become numerous, and the expectation ubiquitous. Organisations have embraced social media, and to a lesser extent, social business. Occasionally it has led to great success, sometimes less so, and often the bumps and scars that are part of a maturing discipline. Along the way, consumers have matured, as well. The tell-tale signs that lead a consumer to build trust, or mistrust, are also changing. What doesn’t change is the underlying principle of trust, and the role it plays in interactions between companies and customers.
What happens when social business confronts multiple engagement channels, particularly the areas traditionally protected from public exposure? Can the collision create a lucrative combination, like peanut butter and chocolate? Or is social and business content closer to chalk and cheese? Perhaps the answer is neither to assume a dichotomy nor throw ourselves into it, but to go boldly, with the occasional backwards glance over our shoulders.