The all-powerful “wiki” says the term ‘Authenticity’ refers to the truthfulness of origins, attributions, commitments, sincerity, devotion and intentions.
Marketers often have no control over the actual product. Products are developed by engineers, chemists, software developers, etc;. Often times this is done in conjunction with a budget manager or accountant to ensure the product is profitable and not too costly. Typically a marketer gets the product last. “Ok, here it is. Go sell it!”
This can lead to problems within the organization:
CEO: “Why isn’t the product selling?”
Developer: “The advertising isn’t good.”
Marketer: “The product doesn’t do what is claims to do. Consumer feedback isn’t positive.”
Developer: “Just change the jingle. It isn’t catchy enough.”
Marketer: “It’s not the jingle. Consumers say the product isn’t as effective as we say it is.”
CEO: “I think it works great. Have we tried another jingle?”
As Christians within organizations, we can often struggle with what our products are and are not. We can place unreasonable or lofty expectations onto a product, good or service because it’s something we hold dear. Likewise, we may choose to downplay or disregard a product because we know the authenticity is suspect. Perhaps it’s your CEO’s pet project or he/she pushed for a specific product name.
As Christian marketers, our best service to our organization/company is to set and manage expectations of a product. This can be difficult, but not impossible if we can focus the conversation on whether or not the company (and resulting product) is truly authentic to your mission and vision.
Here are some basic questions to consider and ask of others:
- How does the product relate to your company’s mission?
- Have we developed the product strictly for financial reasons?
- How do customers benefit from this product?
If you find the product doesn’t relate to your organizations mission, was made for only money’s sake and/or doesn’t truly benefit customers, then we can’t be surprised something doesn’t sell well. The product’s not authentic. No amount of marketing can fix something that’s already broken.