Transparent Marketing™

How to earn the trust of a skeptical consumer

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The Marketer’s Creed

The Prospect’s Protest (A Problem)

  1. I am not a target; I am a person: Don’t market to me, communicate with me.
  2. Don’t wear out my name, and don’t call me “friend,” until we know each other.
  3. When you say “sell,” I hear “hype.” Clarity trumps persuasion. Don’t sell; say.
  4. I don’t buy from companies; I buy from people. And here’s a clue: I dislike companies for the same reason I dislike people. Stop bragging. It’s disgusting.
  5. And why is your marketing “voice” different from your real “voice”? The people I trust don’t patronize me.
  6. In all cases, where the quality of the information is debatable, I will always resort to the quality of the source. My trust is not for sale. You need to earn it.
  7. Dazzle me gradually: Tell me what you can’t do, and I might believe you when you tell me what you can do.
  8. In case you still don’t “get it,” I don’t trust you. Your copy is arrogant, your motives seem selfish, and your claims sound inflated. If you want to change how I buy, first change how you market.

The MarketingExperiments’ Creed (A Response)

ARTICLE ONE: We believe that people buy from people, that people don’t buy from companies, from stores, or from Web sites; people buy from people. Marketing is not about programs; it is about relationships.

ARTICLE TWO: We believe that brand is just reputation; marketing is just conversation, and buying is an act of trust. Trust is earned with two elements: 1) integrity and 2) effectiveness. Both demand that you put the interest of the customer first.

ARTICLE THREE: We believe that testing trumps speculation and that clarity trumps persuasion. Marketers need to base their decisions on honest data, and customers need to base their decisions on honest claims.

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