When we recorded episode 043 of The Heart Of Marketing podcast, the Volkswagen cheating scandal was just unfolding. John Gregory Olson and Jayme Soulati, co-hosts, didn't know that the engineers would be implicated for their retooling of software to cheat the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
This episode runs in and out and around the entire issue of the VW crisis and the mystery of how the C-suite was allegedly unaware of the situation. Moreso, we talk frankly about how customer trust is a pillar of heart marketing and that 'Transparency + Authenticity = Trust' was not heeded by VW at all.
What's a mid-sized company to do? We throw out examples of BP and Coca-Cola, and then bring it home to a smaller-tier company. Once customer trust is polluted, literally, the brand has a tough time to regain it.
In this era of the digital age, customer trust is continuously eroding. Brands are struggling not to engage with crisis. Often, how well a brand bounces back has much to do with the after-effect.
What's your view of how well or if VW can recover?