Author: Scott Oxford
Categories: Knowledge, Business

Truth without fear

I’ve always been a big believer that marketing is at its most powerful when you can encourage potential customers to ask an audaciously big question, and know that your offering can answer it indisputably and confidently.

Truth-telling doesn’t have to be controversial. Done well, it simply gives you an edge the others can’t match.

Specifically, truth-telling campaigns can be about demystifying doubts or falsehoods in the marketplace by challenging customers to ask you the tough questions, knowing you’ve nothing to hide and every positive answer can be a true one.

Now, I don’t know if truth necessarily applies here all the time… but I do love the strategy behind McDonalds’ approach to all the urban myths (truths?) surrounding the content and manufacturing process of their food, and this approach, manifest in this nifty and functional digital solution, captured my interest.

A powerful aspect of this approach is permissioning the target group to cut to the chase and bluntly ask anything.  No matter how ugly the question, the Maccas guys maintain a friendly and elegant response, and manage to turn even the roughest questions into positive answers. This way, the questioner is the one who looks bad to the rest of the viewing audience, and the credibility of the answer is reinforced. Do we believe them? Is it the whole truth?

One of our clients markets products in a particularly crowded retail sector. Recently, after hearing a competitor was routinely bagging them, they decided to attack the rumours head-on by attaching to their quotes a clever but honest response. We’re helping them get their strategy to market this week, and believe they’ll reap rewards for their honesty.


What erroneous facts about your business lurk in your marketplace?

Have you researched your marketplace, either formally or informally, to know? Even if these myths aren’t widespread, addressing the issue in a positive way can provoke interest in your brand, create discussion, and increase the potential for better relationships and new work.

The truth is – or should be – out there.

Truth-telling campaigns can be some of the most rewarding to work on.

From a tagline that challenges the competition to a wholesale campaign addressing porkies, the benefits to your brand can be great if you get the right help to research, strategise and execute it well.

Talk to us – we’d love to help.