Authenticity. Hacks and Hackers.


I was reading a thread in The Brand Strategy Discussion Group on LinkedIn this morning and it touched a nerve.  The post was entitled “How do you define brand authenticity?”

Whenever I’m in a meeting and hear someone go on about “authenticity” or “transparency” it is usually surrounded by a bunch of other marko-babble and I know we’re in for a long hour.

Some people in the discussion group define authenticity as the core values of a brand, suggesting that keeping to those values is what moves brands forward and closer to consumers. With these people I agree. But others talk about being truthful and not manipulating consumers with salesmanship.

The fact that the word authenticity tag clouds (verb) so high in marketing blogs suggests our business is infested with prevaricators. And hawkers.  I don’t necessarily agree. I do believe the business has way too many hacks and not enough hackers. And with the economy opening the flood gates to interns and youthful social media posters, who are all nice people but  probably never raelly sold anything in their lives, it is a cause for concern. Brands are organic things. They are not tofu-like inaminates to be dressed up daily in costume. Peace.