The rules of engagement around building a brand have changed significantly over the past 10 to 15 years. Where companies at one time could spread their message through traditional marketing, consumers now seek an enduring emotional connection with the companies they patronize. The foundation of that connection is the most important characteristic of building a world-class brand: trust. Trust with your people and trust with your customers.
Source: Business 2.0: How To Succceed: Dare to Be a Social Entrepreneur: http://money.cnn.com/popups/2006/biz2/howtosucceed/5.html
Contributed by: ~C4Chaos