No longer are organizations making such a valiant attempt at crafting the perfect sugar coated marketing message to their audience. Consumers have lived through a variety of negative events throughout the past decade, and they’re no longer willing to accept anything businesses tell them. This means that organizations have looked to evolve their communications practices and enter into the glass walled world of transparency.
Being transparent in marketing means being honest, sincere and open without giving away your game to your competition. It means potentially revealing information which would affect the health of your consumers without having to suffer the Michael Moore effect (eg Supersize Me). It means paying attention to the values which your customers hold dear, and correcting your business practices if they run counter to those values. It also means being able to say sorry the moment something explodes in your organization’s face, and being truly remorseful about it through sincere corrective measures.
Brands that make a concentrated effort to be honest and open in their marketing communications will actually work to their advantage. Ultimately, generating positive consumer responses, which can lead to brand loyalty and brand advocacy. Additionally, the people who use an organization’s products or services may be curious about what goes on behind the scenes. Tell them how much you invest in training your staff, or how intensive your product is tested for safety before going to market. Share with them your CEO’s dream and vision, as well as the pains that you take to ensure that every ingredient for your yogurt is organically sourced.
Like in any relationship, building trust is the most important thing, and once you’ve earned it, you need to make sure you keep it. Transparency and trust are no one night stands, they’re an ongoing effort that should be built into the the practices of your organization.