It would seem at present that the perceptions being created by many of the current political candidates are, at least in their minds, more important than the reality of the results most of them have been responsible for throughout their career. To point out the obvious, Donald Trump has been bankrupt several times throughout his career and has invested heavily in numerous failed enterprises including (but not limited to!) Trump Airlines, Trump Vodka, Trump Mortgages, Trump: The Game, and the list goes on.
When you consider the number and extent of Donald’s failed business ventures (and the ensuing losses), the reality of his being highly successful may be less of a reality than he (and his PR team) suggests.
Of course I’m not suggesting that success comes without failure, but I’d like you to consider which is more important, perception or reality.
Before you answer this question, consider for a moment the perceptions your business creates or intends to create in the eyes of your customers. Here are some examples to put you on the right track:
- Are you attempting to create the perception to potential customers that you have a company larger than it really is?
- Are you suggesting to customers that they are your top priority, when in reality they are #201 in your customer database, falling behind several dozen other customers?
- Do you market levels of value you provide to customers, when in reality this value is more a perception of your management team then a reality of your existing customer comments?
When it comes to business it’s not uncommon to use perceptions in an attempt to draw more customers and to sell more products. We call this “marketing.” Problem is if your claims can’t be substantiated or are proven wrong at some point, eventually you’ll loose credibility, market share and of course profits.
Why do I suggest this will happen “eventually?”
Let’s return to Mr. Trump. It’s been documented numerous times that Donald has made claims that may not be based on 100% reality. To this point he’s been able to move beyond these inconsistencies for a variety of reasons (the power of his brand, the “reality” that most of us have learned not to trust what any politician actually says), but mark my words, these misstatements will come back to haunt him some day.
T-Mobile CEO John Legere was caught lying to the EFF about slowing Internet speeds on specific videos.
Notre Dame head coach George O’Leary lied about having a master’s degree from NY University
RadioShack’s CEO David Edmondson lied about having earned degrees in theology and psychology.
Here’s the reality.
Good marketing is built on great value, substantiated by your customers, employees and suppliers. Rather than invest in having a marketing company to tell you what your brand or value statement is, why not just ask what your employees say what customers tell them are the most important aspects of the value you offer. What your customers advise is most valuable to them or what your suppliers suggest are the greatest competitive advantages that your company has within the marketplace?
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Don’t risk your repute for the sake of short-term profits and growth. Build a marketing platform that has a foundation in truth and reality, as the alternative simply isn’t worth the risk.
© Shawn Casemore 2016. All rights reserved.