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  • Emmet Consulting

Are we really entering marketing’s golden age of truth?

Updated: Jan 20, 2020

You’d be quite within your rights to roll your eyes with scepticism. For many big brands the need to be truthful or transparent has been driven by social media, regulation and litigation, not desire.

Marketing Magazine: The Truth Issue

Marketing Truth happens to be Marketing Magazine’s feature this quarter. Coincidentally it’s our guiding proposition at Emmet Consulting. Emmet means truth.

When I set out to establish a consulting firm, I spent much time reflecting on what exactly we wanted to create, the clients we wanted to collaborate with and of course, what to call ourselves? (admittedly this part took a while)

We rested with Emmet.

Doing the right thing by company and customer

Truthfulness in brand is as topical as ethics in AI, so it’s not that surprising that the folks at Marketing decided to dedicate an edition to this very subject.

In this issue Fiona Killackey questions whether authentic brands can also be truthful brands or, are these one of the same when consumers are demanding transparency?

In reading Fiona’s article, the added dimension for me was value. Many established brands are struggling because they’re no longer delivering value customers demand. The harsh reality is, when commercial pressures emerge, decisions are often made with a short-term lens; values and truth often fall into the nice to have bucket.

Be truthful in your focus

In the same issue, Josh Loh picks apart the key themes of the annual B2B Marketing Research Report [commissioned by Green Hat] concluding that marketeers still struggle to prove marketing impact and ROI. Those getting it right are the ones with the ability to think strategically, focus on the customer and bring it all together [Andrew Haussegger, Green Hat].

As marketing becomes increasingly specialised, many teams struggle to unify thinking and activity. Much of this is driven by teams focussing on fragmented markets and niche programmes digital media facilitates. As a result, initiatives fail to ladder to a unified outtake and ROI is not where it needs to be.

[For us] Marketing is the meeting point of customer value and commercial success. Successful marketing is meeting both needs creatively and sustainably. This kind of thinking only comes when organisation’s marketing efforts are aligned, laddering to something bigger than initiatives.

Is brand truth really this season's must have?

Of course it’s critical to be truthful to your brand. However, it’s equally as critical to be truthful to what the organisation requires and focus upon this.

Marketing truth is about being in touch with commercial and customer reality

  • business truths – organisation’s profitability, good habits and opportunities

  • brand truths – the meeting points of customer, brand and organisational values

  • marketing truth – the orchestration of sustainable revenue

  • cultural truths – being realistic about the organisation’s good [and bad] habits, what’s practically feasible and realistic with the resources, capabilities, time and energy at hand.

Our search for truth and telling it well comes from a desire to join these dots. This ‘combined’ truthfulness works as a layer cake to help marketing teams deliver greater value to the organisation’s they serve [and yes, improved chances of success].


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