“People are having conversations these days, only not ‘with’ brands but ‘about’ them. I’d like to suggest that we’re at the start of something big — something bigger than simple engagement or entertainment, and something that goes far beyond the merits of friends and followers on social technology platforms: The ultimate purpose of conversation is to produce a shared understanding of truth.
“Doing so will emerge as the only real competitive advantage left to brands otherwise able to copy one another into commodification. Failing to deliver and sustain truth will be indicators of broader operational weaknesses….
“ figure out the truth sooner or later. They’ll trip over it, a culture-buster will reveal it, or they’ll realize they’re complaining about the same thing over and over again, at which point it won’t matter if what you neglected to explain to them or shaded somewhat finely was immensely important or incomprehensibly minor. They will think you lied, and your brand will suffer. And next time it’ll be that much harder to tell them anything at all.
“It’s inevitable. Today’s conversations reach far beyond social marketing tools to constitute a context in which everything your business declares and does is added to the mix. Even if you don’t explicitly lie in your marketing, you are implicitly not helping truth perception when you promulgate content that has low to no truth quotient. You tolerate a truth gap.”
- Excerpts from Advertising Age