Yes you read it right. Transparency is new powerful marketing; it has a strong pull, transparency has great power of attraction. It pulls readers, leads and customers.
We suffer from lack of transparency in our daily life. Let me ask you, is the media transparent in reporting news or events are the people who govern us transparent in their dealings or are the business conglomerates transparent with their shareholders and the customers?
I see that everyone has an agenda, they are all biased and no one is transparent. What you see or hear is all a sugar coated pill.
Like always, there are exceptions though, but unfortunately in negligible numbers.
The question therefor is, should we let it be the way it is and swim with the flow or should we take it as an opportunity to stand up, be transparent in our business and attract traffic.
Today the Customer is empowered
Only those business houses or entrepreneurs follow transparent marketing concept who fully understand that today the customer is highly empowered. If you chose not to be transparent, the customer has thousand and one ways to know things about you and your business, which perhaps even you don’t know.
For a minute, put yourself in customer’s shoes. Won’t you like to know as much as you can about a company if you are going to do business with them, so if you are transparent, giving all information and facts yourself, you will be winning the trust of the customer right away? Your customer is all in.
Best Transparent Corporations
Realizing that the customer is king, a number of powerful international brands have adapted transparent marketing as an ethical practice for corporate governance. They have won the hearts of their customers and competition. I feel it appropriate to share the marketing ethos of two such companies.
This is a very interesting case study in marketing in the recent times. McDonald Canada got the consumers excited to ask McDonalds questions under their “Our Food, Your Questions” campaign. The idea was to be absolutely transparent in the answers thereby removing all doubts and misconceptions about McDonald’s food. The company website received over two million hits and over 20,000 questions were asked and answered. I think one can write a book on this study.
Here are some of the questions that people asked.
Are any McDonald’s foods made in China?
Are any McDonald’s products genetically modified?
What oil does McDonald’s use?
Is bacon grilled or microwaved?
And the list goes on. It is quite clear that the answers to these straight questions has to be straight forward, transparent and true.
McDonalds success in the fast food burger business is something to envy about. But we also know why they are what they claim they are.
The Auto Giant BMW
They believe in total transparency with the public about their company or the cars. Nothing is hidden. In fact the public loves them for being honest.
At the Digital Innovators’ Summit in Berlin, in 2013, Steven Althaus, head of brand management and marketing services at BMW said “marketing will no longer be the department that puts lipstick on the gorilla. It needs to be about truth well told“. He was quick to add that “It’s ok to fail as long as you learn from your mistakes.” Further he said that ‘Brands should think harder about the input of media, agencies, researchers and consultants”. “These are the people that can tell you that things won’t work.”
This is being absolute transparent to your product and the customers. No wonder, BMW is the most preferred auto commanding a high premium.
Now let’s talk about ourselves. Are we transparent in our business of blogging, internet marketing or affiliate marketing? Do we mean what we preach? Are we recommending the right product to our readers, are our income or traffic claims sustainable? If the answer even one of this is no, there is a lot to worry about.
We must learn to earn the trust of our customers and readers to succeed in our online affiliate marketing business. Trust can only be earned on the foundation of truth and the truth can only be disclosed if you are transparent. Success will follow you. People will call you Masters and Leaders.
So why wait? Get transparent, remember that transparency is the new marketing to power your business to new heights!