I believe that truth, or authenticity if you will, leads to success. People can tell if you are holding back or trying to be something you think the market wants; rather than who you are. Whether you lead a team of one or one hundred this theory is sound. Consumers instinctively know if you are trying to put one over on them; and employees know if something doesn’t feel quite right.
There is a reason for the expression “truth in advertising”. There is a reason a politician must lead an exemplary personal life while they preach on family values and helping their constituents. It’s about continuity of image in addition to the fact that consumers must feel empathy to open their wallets.
They have to trust in the organization behind the product as well as the quality of the product. We don’t want to wear beautiful clothing if it’s constructed in sweat shops. We don’t want to buy a product that is meant to supply fun if it’s marketed in a serious, over their heads, fashion. I refer you to RIM’s recent marketing of their tablet. There was too much tech and not enough imagery about people using them in their lives enjoying the product.
In my experience businesses often get in their own way when creating a marketing plan. They work backwards from statistics and impersonal SEO analytics and try to make their brand fit. It can be a bit like trying to fit a circle in to a square.
If you start with your unique qualities, existing gifts, your passion for your trade and a desire to offer the consumer something that will actually improve their quality of life or save them time and money you can’t go wrong.
So be who you are, empathize first, and demonstrate why you care enough to work hard for your customers and employees.
Word of mouth is the truth of your advertising and brand. Opening your mind can only optimize Your Exponential Potential for success.