The Importance of Transparency in Social Media Marketing

In today’s consumer culture, people often times have several choices at their fingertips, whether it be for clothing, fast food, cars, you name it. Because of this, it is becoming more important than ever for brands to focus on customer retention and customer loyalty.

Transparency is an important way of doing this. In fact, a survey showed that 94 percentof consumers are more likely to be loyal to brands that show transparency in as a part of their marketing efforts. 

“Transparency marketing is all about letting your fans, customers and leads into your world so they know you and feel your brand’s human side.”

– Luis Congdon, Entrepreneur.com Guest Writer

Companies are embracing this new tactic of transparency left and right. Here are a few of the most prominent brands that have been successful doing this: 

McDonald’s

McDonald’s has been known for its poor rumors regarding its food. Between high preservatives and serving meats that are misleading, consumers have been wary of eating there for years. As a result, the brand created the “Our food. Your questions.” campaign, which allowed them to address these rumors head on. 

They even went so far as to post a video from inside one of its beef processing plants, proving that the beef patties they serve are truly from cows, as opposed to cheaper alternatives. The campaign has been widely successful, with more than 42,000 questions posted by consumers and close to 4 million people visiting the site seeking answers to these questions. This shows how much their consumers value this transparency. 

Patagonia

Since the beginning, Patagonia has been very open about its mission of sustainability and push for social change. They are consistently keeping up with the times in terms of sustainable practices, and they are open with their customer base about what they are doing. 

They even go a step further, educating their customers so that the consumers themselves will be better equipped to make decisions that benefit the environment. One of the ways in which they have done this is through their Fair Trade campaign, which was prompting consumers to be more conscientious about where their clothing is coming from. 

This transparency about their mission and dedication to living it out has allowed for consumers to put their trust in this brand, contributing largely to the success of Patagonia. 

“Environmentally concerned consumers trust that Patagonia stands for a higher purpose than making money and are therefore emotionally inspired to support the brand, which embodies their values.”

-Catherine Morin, Writer for CRM.org

So how can companies work to improve their transparency?

Social media is one of the most prominent ways in which brands can improve their transparency. Social media marketing channels are the best platform for that personal connection. And as people no longer find their connection through products, this is more necessary than ever. Goals resonate with people. Stories resonate with people. Achievements that better the community resonate with people. This is what companies should focus on. 

Image result for transparency in social media marketing
https://www.smartinsights.com/digital-marketing-strategy/people-want-brands-to-be-more-transparent-on-social-media/

In a surveyof 1,000 United States adults, it was established that the top two means of displaying transparency on social media are admitting to mistakes and providing custoemrs with honest responses to their questions. These are the ways in which brands should begin building transparency for their consumers, if they have not done so already. 

Additional Sources: 

https://www.visioncritical.com/blog/5-brands-employed-transparency-marketing-and-won

https://crm.org/articles/patagonias-customer-base-and-the-rise-of-an-environmental-ethos

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