Today, your prospective clients are increasingly connected to social networks. And, according to network theory, these networks help members get smarter as the network gets larger. So, with the rise of social media, we marketers must reconsider the authenticity of our messages, lest they be deemed disingenuous and therefore ignored.
In the days of mass media, we pumped out product or service messaging on a one-to-many megaphone. Your prospects had no fast way of verifying their doubts and no immediate access to the “truth.” Now with a quick Google search, they can get as many variants of the “truth” as they want.
To combat this, we marketers need to rise above puffery and obviously slanted corporate messages. Our positioning needs to be authentic. According to Dictionary.com:
- Not false or copied; genuine; real.
- Having the origin supported by unquestionable evidence; authenticated; verified.
- Entitled to acceptance or belief because of agreement with known facts or experience; reliable; trustworthy.
Your messages must have genuine meaning that reaches to your prospects’ hearts and minds. If not, your prospects will leverage Twitter, Facebook, and My Space to broadcast your disingenuousness to the whole world.
It’s simple. You have two choices: (1) Continue to broadcast corporate propaganda, or (2) Create authentic marketing messages from trustworthy sources that contain genuine benefits for the prospect. If you choose the first option, you will never be able to compete with the myriad human voices on the Web talking about your product or service. Your prospects will smell PR spins and advertising exaggerations from miles away. Should you choose the second option, with a little effort, you can give your prospects the smell of authenticity and the world of social media will work in your favor.