I was crossing the Throgs Neck Bridge when I first heard authenticity defined. I was listening to Seth Godin’s “All Marketers are Liars”. I understood the world was changing for business. This was before the big Facebook revolution, but it was close. I knew the noise was becoming both a detriment and a opportunity. The Seth Godin audiobook was the key to the new wave of marketing.
Seth (I’ve emailed him four times so I can refer to him in the first person) discusses that being authentic is not about being absolutely factual, or even 100% truthful. It’s about what rings true to your audience and in the end, your client satisfaction.
Seth tells the story of Riedel glassware. Riedel carries with it the idea that drinking from it makes the wine taste better. IS there any scientific proof? Abolutely not. Do Riedel clients enjoy their wine more and talk about the glassware? That’s really the only question that matters.
Every business and movement has a story. The parts that we tell and shape and tell again are our authenticity.
The reason the light bulb went off in my head was that I realized with all of the tools provided by the internet, we can now tell that story, listen to the response and hone it over and over again. The development and spreading of our authentic story can happen with precise direction and speed.
As a small business you can get super personalized on your story and tell it to the right audience, because you have the means to spoon feed it to them. Give them sips of your story on Facebook, a little when they are googling you, a little on Twitter, a little through some emails. Listen to what they say and adapt the story telling method.
It’s a big mindset to wrap your head around. Authenticity does not mean absolute fact. It means telling stories that are remarkable to your ideal audience.
Living and breathing an authentic story is the best way to survive in a conversation-rich world. – Seth Godin