ENTREPRENEURSHIP / MAY. 29, 2014
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How To Run An Honest Marketing Campaign And Build Consumer Trust

honest marketing

The need for incorporating strong morals with branding is more important than ever when it comes to online marketing.

Consumers urge brands to be more transparent with their campaigns, which can result in open communication, more sales and trust. Businesses that fail to embrace the fundamentals of an honest campaign may notice their audience to be hesitant and difficult to win over.

Handling Customers in the Digital Age

The rise of digital platforms has allowed consumers to reach out to their favorite brands directly. Instead of sending a letter or going through a third party, people are now using social media and forums to provide feedback about their experience. Because of this, brands must take an open-minded approach towards handling customers.

A consumer who had a bad experience can voice out his or her concerns for other visitors to see. Businesses that attempt to hide such issues by moderating or manipulating the voice of the consumer may end up tarnishing their reputation.

Top 3 Companies Leading the Transparency Trend

These days, we are seeing brands that are taking a brutally honest approach to marketing. The brutally honest approach is bold, straightforward and leaves nothing behind. Brands that want to use this method must cite their flaws and weakness, apart from their strengths.

Newcastle Brown Ale- Newcastle Brown Ale applied the brutally honest approach in their recent campaign. Markings of the successful campaign can be seen in the 9% sales increase and over 600,000 new Facebook likes. An example of one of their slogans that was used during the campaign is the following:

“[Newcastle Brown Ale:] handcrafted by master brewers, and hand photoshopped by underpaid interns.”

What we can learn from the brand:

Their technique was to remove all candy-coated elements of a typical ad campaign, and just be themselves. It was a bold move that paid off. Companies don’t necessarily need to go this extreme to reap the benefits of a transparent campaign. Newcastle Brown Ale’s approach only proves that honesty can go a long way when it comes to reaching out to customers.

Lays’ Potato Chips- Lay’s Potato Chips had a reputation for manufacturing unhealthy snacks. It is likely that people who work for Lay’s are aware of the lack of health benefits their product has on the human body. The company wanted to turn their image around through a digital campaign. To promote the natural value of their brand, users can now find which farm their potato chips came from using a tracker on the label. This approach is simple, yet very effective.

What we can learn from the brand:

Lay’s approach towards transparency was basic. Companies that are thinking too far out of the box may find that it’s better to take a no frills approach to their brand.

Organic Valley- Organic Valley had a similar approach to Lay’s. They didn’t stop at providing a tracker for their ingredients. For a thorough solution in preserving the integrity of their brand, the company provided an open invitation for consumers to visit their farm and meet their staff. Farmer profiles are also available on their website. Organic Valley’s campaign is about as transparent as it gets. From the roots of the product, to the people who create their goods, the only thing they have left to show their consumers are their sales reports.

What we can learn from the brand:

If you’re in an industry that is filled with controversial issues, it pays to go out of your way to be as transparent and honest as possible.

To conclude, businesses don't have to hide complex messages in their marketing campaigns. Taking the straightforward approach can save you time, money and solidify consumer trust.

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