In an era of click-bate, bots, and news headline after headline exposing corporate scandals — honesty has never been a more powerful marketing tactic. Customers often value a positive user experience with a brand they can trust more than they do product features. It’s about building trust between the company and its customers.
Sure, we still need to find artistic and creative ways to put our products in the best light (and out from the competition) but that is something that can be done truthfully, and not manipulatively. So what exactly does honest marketing look like? Here’s an idea.
If your audience can easily see who you are as an organization, beyond the products you sell or the service you provide, they’ll develop a stronger relationship with your brand. A fews way to be transparent is by providing a genuine mission statement, offering a bit of company history and showing the faces of the people behind the scenes. Use real images taken from your office or operation versus buying stock photos. Put up your employee head-shots on the website. Here's an example from our site if your curious.
Read how Facebook is making a big push to make advertising more transparent.
It’s easy to tell customers what they want to hear. But if you set the wrong expectations, you will create a bad user experience. If your produce or service doesn’t live up to the promises embedded in ad headlines, you’re one step closer to being a shady company. It’s critical that you are upfront with your audience about what you’re offering. Get rid of any hidden fees, cryptic terms and conditions, click-bate and so on.
Are you annoying your customers? Consider doing this instead.
It Takes Responsibility
A company always needs to hold it’s self accountable. Which means prioritizing social, environmental and economical ethics. An honest marketing strategy operates in ways that enhance society and the environment, instead of contributing negatively to it. And when a mistake happens, they don’t ignore or disguise the issue — they come out and address it. People tend to understand that people are people and even in the best-run companies mistakes happen
Being helpful is at the core of the inbound marketing strategy. Ideally, your product or service solves a problem you know your audience has. Your marketing strategy should be about helping people find a solution to this problem in the easiest way possible. Instead of pushing sales at every opportunity — create valuable blog posts, demo videos, tutorials. Find out what matters most to your customers and cater to their specific needs.