Trust is interesting currency. The other day I requested a ride from Lyft and was shown a photo of my smiling “new friend.” When she arrived, smile intact, I gave her the prerequisite fist bump and got in.
Never saw her before in my life. Total stranger. And total trust.
But what was I trusting? Lisa, my driver, was chatty and bright, easy to trust. But before I ever met Lisa, when she was still just pixels on my iPhone, I had decided that, barring a bloody axe on the front seat, I’d get into her car and ride to the airport.
I trusted. I think I trusted the app.
It, the app (increasingly anthropomorphized as this piece goes on), had addressed me as someone both worthy of trust and trusting. I trusted the app because it had shown me values I could endorse. I must have trusted the software that did background checks on the drivers. I must have trusted the online reviews that gave Lyft high marks in my city, Nashville. I must have trusted the values and the abilities of the people who built and run Lyft—but the interface for all this background stuff is just a pink balloon on the screen of my phone. I was reminded of last year’s movie SHE, in which a guy falls in love with an operating system. I’m not in love with the Lyft app, but we’ve got a thing. Generational Marketing (Marketing with Generational Intelligence) gets more interesting all the time.
The same principle applies with Airbnb. People you don't know are in your house. People you don’t know are in your house—and you trust them.
Tech doesn’t just facilitate trust. It appears to inspire it, especially among younger generations.
Hunter Reed, founder of app-based Blue Chip Pet Care, surveyed pet owners who use Blue Chip. He found that, especially among Millennials, the more updates the better—when the care provider arrives, when the pet eats, how long the walk, did he (the pet) relive himself, a sign-off when the provider leaves. Hunter also found that the younger the pet owner, the less it mattered that he or she had met the care provider face to face. In other words—they trust the tech. They trust the app
In generational terms, we live in interesting times--actively creating a new economy and new community (the kind my parents knew in their small town) but doing it digitally. The Share Economy as a gen trend continues to swell, and it’s not just for Millennials. Tweet This
Technology is changing our definition of relationship. Digital feels increasingly real for all of us of every generation. High-tech is becoming high-touch.
Amy Lynch, Generational Speaker | @AmyLynchGenEdge
Let's Talk: 615-944-6140
President of Generational Edge, Amy Lynch has written and spoken about the generations for 15 years. She has spoken to 100s of groups from MTV and Comcast to Boeing, J&J and the staff of the U.S. Senate. Amy has been quoted in national publications, including The Washington Post, USA Today, Boston Globe, Huffington Post, Chicago Tribune and NBC Evening News, among others.