A Fair Fight: Ethical Marketing Part 2

So we’ve established that marketing and marketing strategies aren’t just an act of making people want things they don’t need – now let’s dive into how we can make marketing even better by adding an ethical element to the mix.

So, now that we know that marketing is love – and it is known that love is a battlefield – let’s talk about fighting fair.

Don’t get me wrong – I thrive on competition. I used to be a professional kickboxer; I love to win and I hate to lose. I’m actually gritting my teeth here. If it’s your night to shine, I’m happy (well, tolerant, but whatevs) to take one on the chin and figure out what I learned from the defeat, as long as I held my own.

You know what’s even better than winning or losing? A good fight. A fair fight. One in which you hug and shake hands when all is done and dusted, moving forward stronger. They’re the ones you remember forever and grow stronger from.

This is the basis of ethical marketing – a fair fight.

Because that’s what we’re doing – we’re fighting to be heard in a world of noise. 

We’re fighting for ethical brands. We’re fighting to bring value to our clients and their customers. We’re fighting against apathy, nonsense, misdirection, false advertising and lies. 

But why? Would we be just as happy if we won by hook and/or crook? No – and we wouldn’t be as successful either.

At the most basic level, we’re doing this because it works. 

Consider the following quote from the Harvard Business Review:

“Depending on which study you believe, and what industry you’re in, acquiring a new customer is anywhere from five to 25 times more expensive than retaining an existing one. It makes sense: you don’t have to spend time and resources going out and finding a new client — you just have to keep the one you have happy. If you’re not convinced that retaining customers is so valuable, consider research done by Frederick Reichheld of Bain & Company (the inventor of the net promoter score) that shows increasing customer retention rates by 5% increases profits by 25% to 95%.”

As a veteran marketer in big and small business marketing who has worked across pretty much every industry you can name, I assure you from both a quantitative and qualitative standpoint that this is 100% true – you can cheat somebody and take their cash once, or you can treat them with respect and take their cash 100 times. I’ve worked with businesses on both sides of that equation, and the outcomes speak for themselves. 

Strong work ethics win outright, every time.

So now we’ve figured out:

1) what marketing is, the meaning of marketing (selling shit),
2) what good marketing is (match-making) and
3) the outcomes of ethical VS unethical marketing (long term win/win VS short term win/lose).

NOW we’re ready to start looking at the nuts and bolts of it.

Ready to learn the truth of the matter? Read the next part in our series: The Ethical Marketing Manifesto – Ethical Marketing Part 3.

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