Is Your Digital Marketing Strategy In-Line with Your Core Values?

by WordWrite Staff, on Jan. 17, 2014

Many companies tout their integrity and trustworthiness as a reason for why we should do business with them. It makes sense, right? When two companies do or sell the same thing and all things are comparable, it’s human nature to lean towards working with or buying from the one we believe we can trust—one who has high moral standards and works to uphold them. Don't commit a Facebook fail.

What happens though, when that trustworthy company hires vendors to act on their behalf who may not have the same morals or who use questionable tactics to achieve goals? Basically, by default, the company is painted with the same brush as its vendor. When unethical behavior or poor judgment is identified, it reflects poorly on the company who hired them. Sometimes it can create a true crisis—as was the case with the agency hired to manage automaker Chrysler’s social media account. An agency staffer’s f-bomb tweet was mistakenly sent out from Chrysler’s account. While quickly deleted, it had already been re-tweeted and picked up by blogs causing quite the social media commotion for the automaker. They subsequently cancelled their contract with the agency. And, just last year someone managing the company’s social media account posted an image of a Dodge Viper sports car onto video of the meteorite that hit Russia and put it on one of the company’s YouTube channels. So not cool.

Sometimes, such behavior may not be so outright or noticeable. I’ve seen time and again, good, honest companies fall victim to a seemingly “cool and hip” marketing agency that promised amazing results in a short time frame. ROI is usually what holds companies back from hiring an agency so one that promises quick results is a dream come true. Or is it?

I’m not sure why so many people still have the mistaken notion that lots of friends and followers equates to success. It’s like believing that the most popular kid in your high school class would grow up to become President of the United States. Think back to your adolescence—what is that popular kid doing now? Chances are…the same as you and me. So, let’s just remove that thought from your brain—having more social media followers and likes does not mean you are more successful or will sell more product.

If you used a marketing firm to get you those followers they promised you, they aren’t valuable anyway because they were bought. That’s right…BOUGHT. And, in most cases, aren’t real. If you bought a service in which you were promised 2,000 followers in six days, you now have lots more followers who mean diddly-squat to your success. They are either fake accounts or “real” accounts run by people overseas hired to click on certain pages, links or comment on videos. Add to that, your competitors and anyone with an ounce of social media savvy know that pages with thousands of likes but only a few people actually interacting with the content was achieved dishonorably and will quickly dismiss you for being a fraud.

You got “results” but at what cost? Are they worth risking the reputation you’ve spent so much time building? No—plain and simple. Remember, if something sounds too good to be true IT IS.

“Congratulations! You’ve just won a free cruise!”

Or one of my personal favorites—a letter from a fake airline telling me I’ve won a free flight. I think I’ve received this one twice from US Airlines.

We know these are gimmicks, so why do too many smart and honest companies fall for crazy marketing gimmicks?

“Buy our fan package and get 1,000 Facebook likes for $49.95!”

“We’ll get your company on the first page of Google search in just two weeks!”

Need proof this is happening? Just check out this recent Associated Press article — Selling social media clicks becomes big business.

As an agency that was built on integrity, trust, transparency and a deep-seated desire to do what is right and meaningful, WordWrite Communications finds these tactics repulsive. It’s beyond frustrating to see well-meaning companies be wooed by lies or people who utilize less than honorable tactics to achieve their goals. It’s not how we do business. We get results for our clients, however we do so in a collaborative, organic way. We don’t say, “just give us all your passwords and your credit card and we’ll take it from here… “ It boggles my mind any company would agree to allow an agency to do that to begin with but it happens. Trust me.

So, I would ask any company looking to boost their digital marketing to do a little research. You’ll quickly see that Facebook, Google and others are cracking down on unethical activity going so far as to remove accounts or limit activity. Look for a firm with integrity. Are you comfortable with the people there? Do they tell you exactly how they get results? How transparent are they? Done correctly, social media and digital marketing can be fun and extremely beneficial to your business. Spend the time finding quality leads—those who are looking for what you do and who will interact with you for the right reasons. Don’t fall victim to the quick fixes promised by agencies whose only goal is to take your money and run. Remember, you are trusting these folks with your company image. It’s a big job so don’t take it lightly when hiring outside help.

Here’s a great article from the HubSpot inbound marketing blog worth checking out: Has Social Media Marketing Lost Its Way?

Topics:inbound marketinginbounddigital marketingdigital strategy
Hollie Geitner-wordwrite-headshot-1
Hollie Geitner
Vice President, Culture and Brand Ambassador

Hollie Geitner is Vice President, Culture and Brand Ambassador at WordWrite Communications. You can get in touch with her via email at hollie.geitner@wordwritepr.com or follow her on Twitter at @JustHollieG.

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