I can see right through you!
While you may not like hearing that in personal conversation, but transparent marketing is the future.
While you may have heard that millennials are the main generation that focuses on transparency, statistics show that consumers in general are erring on the side of wanting to see more from the brands they buy from.
You see, consumers are accustomed to marketers being dishonest. And for a long time, they had no other options than to hope for the best and expect the worst from their purchases. That’s where transparent marketing comes in.
Now that the internet has made researching offerings before purchase easier, buyers are no longer content to just take your word for how great a brand is. They want proof, in the form of both internal and external validation.
Transparency gives them this validation. We are no longer in an era where consumers will blindly accept false promises. Transparency ensures that your marketing accurately reflects the true customer experience.
Don’t Spray Paint the Fruit
Consumers are tired of having the wool pulled over their eyes when it comes to marketing and advertising.
They are weary of tactics like those in the food industry, where food is painted, sprayed and tampered with to make it look beautiful on camera.
Today’s buyers don’t want this flashy sort of trickery.
Be sure that your marketing and advertising is honest and reflects the consumer experience accurately. Then they won’t be disappointed when they buy the actual product. Transparent marketing is the best marketing.
Tell Them What You Do With Their Data
When asking for a potential buyer to fill out a form or sign up for a mailing list, be sure to tell them how you will handle their data.
When you don’t, consumers are weary of where their data will go – for good reason. They’ve all gotten the unsolicited phone calls and emails to prove it.
Tell your audience what you will do with their data and how you will keep it safe. This can be achieved by simply line or two of text as they fill out their information.
Tell Them What Drives Your Brand
Tell potential buyers the “why” behind your brand. In B2B, the why might be the only thing that differentiates your brand from the competitors.
Tell your audience how your business came to be, how it grows.
This is usually contained in a core mission statement, but those are typically buried somewhere on your website.
Bring this to the foreground, putting it in obvious places like your homepage. Ensuring that your customers know the story of your inception makes it easier for them to connect with your brand.
Reveal Your Struggles
Instead of sweeping mistakes, failures, and issues under the rug, talk about them.
When you customers have an issue, don’t just let it fester, bring it out into the open and let your audience help you fix it.
Showing your own shortcomings and publicly trying to fix them is the ultimate form of transparency. It shows customers and potential customers that you endeavor to grow and change.
Post Honest Testimonials
When your customers give you feedback, ensure that it gets shared.
Post their honest feedback on your page. Fake feedback is the opposite of transparency. Fake feedback can be fake reviews, paid reviews, etc. If your customers find out you are doing this, you can kiss your credibility goodbye.
Obviously sharing a particularly terrible review might harm your brand, but remember that the information is likely already out there. Bad reviews are something you need to own and publicly handle. This allows potential customers to see how you manage issues and what their own customer experience would be like.
Get Extreme… If You Dare
Some companies are taking transparency to the extreme, sharing everything from employee salary information to their own profits.
This highly sensitive data really shows your audience the inner workings of your business. If they see you are highly profitable, they will know that your offering is likely a good one.
But, you don’t necessarily need to get that in-depth.
Share what makes your company so special, its workers.
Moz does a nice job with this, with their CEO, Rand Fishkin, doing a series of weekly videos on SEO. You see him and learn from him on his very own section of the blog.
This personal touch makes Moz very successful. The CEO obviously knows what he’s talking about, which makes viewers much more likely to want to buy the SEO tools his company offers.
You can also get personal by showing off pictures of your team or allowing your team to show some personality on their Twitter accounts. Reveal the real people behind the logo.
Transparency is now an essential component of creating a great audience experience. Allowing customers to get a view of what happens in your business creates trust in your brand. This trust helps guide leads through the pipeline and closer to a sale. Apply even a few of these tips and you’ll find your customers and audience much more satisfied with your brand. Transparent marketing is the future of marketing.
Have you tried revealing some of the processes behind your business? How did your customers respond? Let us know in the comments section.