“We live in an era of authenticity”

I stumbled upon this video while procrastinating one afternoon, and found it absolutely fascinating.

I was drawn in by the title “Confessions of a liar – Marketing in the era of authenticity”, a title that could only be created by someone with a talent for marketing.

Gina Balarin, a Senior Marketing Director at the time, captured and held my attention through the entire talk… which is an extraordinary feat in and of itself as I usually turn off TED talks as soon as I understand the gist.

She gave this talk over two years ago, but her words are even more meaningful and true today.

She discusses the importance of honesty for today’s marketers…

“Brands who lie run the risk of no longer having a brand.”

She defines the difference between advertising and marketing, which I found helpful as I’m often asked this question…

“Marketing is the art and science of connecting brands with consumers. Advertising is a tool that marketers can choose to use or not use in that tug of war between advertisers and marketers.”

And finally, Gina gives her sound advice on competing as a marketer in today’s over-saturated world.

“They can’t afford to compete with the noise. So, the only way to survive is by becoming the noise that people want to listen to… No one buys what you do. They buy why you do it.”

This talk inspired me in my current marketing work, and motivated me to write a blog post bringing this talk to some who may never have seen it.

As writers for the web, we have a duty to our audience to be well-informed and honest. If we lie, our entire body of work can be called into question and we can be “cancelled” in the blink of an eye. Our reputation is no longer one of authenticity, and our brand is therefore marked as untrustworthy.

In a world where trust is everything, we, as writers, cannot afford to make the mistake of misinforming our audience.

I’d love to start a discussion on Gina’s points, if you have any thoughts please leave them below, and happy Friday!

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