Updated: Jun 20, 2020
The greatest marketing lie is, in fact, that Marketing itself is a lie.
Marketing is oftentimes being perceived as a profession which only deceptive people are engaging in. As a Marcom Specialist working in the tech industry, my own integrity is being questioned on a daily basis by both colleagues and customers.
However, I'm not going to blow my own horn here and declare myself as righteous. What I am going to do, is to share with you a few facts and figures about Marketing that might make you feel differently about this profession by the time you're done reading this post.
So, are you ready for some red hot chili pepper pill?
Red Hot Chili Pepper Pill
In the 1999 film The Matrix, Neo is offered the choice between a red pill and a blue pill by rebel leader Morpheus. The red pill would free him from the enslaving control of the machine-generated dream world and allow him to escape into the real world. However, living the "truth of reality" is harsher and more difficult. On the other hand, the blue pill would lead him back to stay in the comfortable simulated reality of the Matrix.
The Matrix - Red Pill vs. Blue Pill
If we compare the Matrix world to the high-tech industry, we might find some similarities: in both of them there are great forces with interests, regular people who trust and cooperate with the "Machines" and, of course, the rebels. The engine that keeps these two dream worlds running is, unfortunately, Marketing.
Marketing is a powerful psychological, creative and analytical process which shapes, promotes and sustains the image of a brand through a cohesive message. A company's image is one of its most important assets, sometimes even more than the product it sells. Therefore, just like in the Matrix, many high-tech companies are abusing the great power of Marketing in order to sell more products, achieve greater investments and compete with their fierce competitors.
Promote Truth and Success Will Follow
Fortunately, not every high-tech company is misleading. It really depends on the company's leadership who defines the fundamentals of the Marketing message - the company's vision and values. Then, the Marketing professionals, whose job is to shape that precious message, will promote content that is aligned with these fundamentals.
“It’s not about pop culture, and it’s not about fooling people, and it’s not about convincing people that they want something they don’t. We figure out what we want. And I think we’re pretty good at having the right discipline to think through whether a lot of other people are going to want it, too. That’s what we get paid to do. So you can’t go out and ask people, you know, what the next big [thing.] There’s a great quote by Henry Ford, right? He said, ‘If I’d have asked my customers what they wanted, they would have told me ‘A faster horse’.” - Steve Jobs
To sum up, Marketing is a powerful tool which can be utilized to promote either truthful facts or what we call today "Fake News". Decent leaders and Marketing professionals will use it fairly, while dishonest ones will use it to promote any message they think they can benefit from. One thing is for sure, Marketing is the backbone of the high-tech industry, and if you put it to good use, you can achieve anything.