i feel naked (transparent)!

A buzzword in online marketing today is transparency. It means the more you reveal about yourself to your prospects, the more they will bond with and hopefully buy from you.

Transparency is contrary to the classic copywriting rule; the reader isn’t interested in you. The reader is interested in their needs, fears, concerns, problems, and desires.

Transparency represents a paradigm shift of the prospect’s attention from them to you, the marketer.

Is transparency true? Do you really care which blend Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks drinks or whether Mickey Drexler actually wears J. Crew or is still sporting the GAP label?

I have trouble believing anyone cares much about what I do, like, or think. (Of course, I am more boring than Howard and Mickey.)

But in case I am wrong, and transparency is what you crave, here are a few things about me I probably haven’t told you before:

  • I am a bit over 50 and believes that my creative juice and passion for what I do flows from the child that survived inside me.
  • I grew up in a newspaper family, I guess a little of the ink got on me but I always preferred advertising and the money-making side!
  • I am ignited by the new digital world and the awesome new platforms that allow the speed of information that exist today.
  • I am a commercial junkie, nature of the beast; just love to watch, share and analyze them. Funny how most big budgets are spent on crap!
  • I am not afraid to admit that I have made many bad decisions but all were made with good intentions. Hopefully my past has made me a better person but I am certain I will make a few more.
  • I also admit that I do not fully buy into the politically correct nature of the day. I think George Carlin was correct, too much soft language!
  • The Internet has eroded my attention span like it has everyone else’s, but I am still an avid reader and media consumer. I just have fewer “old style” books and magazines.
  • While I read widely on a variety of topics, I mostly consume marketing and advertising material trying to keep up with the flow and it is flowing! BTW, I also read and study my other hobby, see next:
  • A hobby, aside from marketing, is hunting. Yes this means I do kill animals, an inherited trait from my Grandfather. This passion still burns strong in me but I emphasize the word “hunting,” which I mainly find myself doing instead of killing!
  • I studied business and marketing and I am a bit entrepreneurial. Another trait I guess which came from my Grandfather who never worked for anyone!
  • I am married to Shalah who is an exciting life partner as well as engaging business partner (I hope she never changes her mind about me). I have a grown daughter, Jessica who resides in Florida.

One last thing, I often dream of a better world, one that where chickens can cross the road without having their motives questioned!

So there is a glimpse of me and if you do not see what you may be looking for, I invite you to look online, I am sure it is there! Now, is this list as boring to you as it is to me?


8 thoughts on “i feel naked (transparent)!

  1. Hello Randy, thanks for sharing what you are wearing underneath your clothes :-) Interesting that we share so many things in common as I felt close to you through your online presence although we never met or talk.

    I’ am getting closer to 50, I am also sharing your passion for social networking and avidity to learn new things or meet people every day. I don’t care about being politically correct this is something very embedded in the American culture but French don’t care, I have been with the same man for 30 years (officially married for 25 years) and still enjoying it :-)
    Traveling is a passion and I have been living abroad for 20+ years. I love dancing Zumba, Singing, Jazz, Scuba-Diving. I wear no political color, except I avoid extremists and intolerant people. I don’t watch TV shows just DVDs as I love movies.

    I think sharing non-business information online has the same effect when you interact with people “live”: It would be terribly boring if you would only talk about business . Any interpersonal transaction is based on trust that is built on mutual respect and sharing same fundamental values even if we don’t agree with everything. I don’t care you hunt although personally I don’t like it

    I don’t feel naked because I will never show up that way in public: I don’t share subjects I feel needs to be kept private.

    Have a great Weekend

    • Even closer…Passionate about moives, in fact a “buff.” Certified scuba diver for many years. Adore travel but certainly do not get to do enough and sadly have limited adventures. The metaphore “naked” is something I would never do either … $#1T I am over 50!
      Thank you very much for the read and comments and know I value your presence in my digital space, NJoy.

  2. That’s quite a list. Personally, I think being authentic with what you do reveal is more important than revealing all. Showing your personality helps with the Like => Trust => Buy equation.

    In my offline world, I’m not very PC. But online I have become friends with some really interesting people with VERY diverse views. I enjoy reading the differing perspectives, and I don’t want my Facebook page, or Twitter stream to become cluttered with philosophical arguments (especially in an election year), so I remain silent about most of my “non-PC” views online.

    One exception to my “PC” online presence is that it’s no secret we are a hunting family. There are times when we could go weeks with no store bought meat in our house. It’s healthier, less cruel to the animal, and more fun. I believe anyone who has an ethical problem with hunting should ethically be a vegetarian (and for those who choose that, I respect it). Where we live in Southern California, hunting is NOT a normal part of our culture, but we have a close circle of friends who appreciate it. It’s a family tradition for my husband, which we are passing to our kids. My son passed his safety test (with 94%) at 9 and hunted the first season he was 10. I’ve been considering helping him to start a hunting blog for kids with safety and how-to videos.

  3. Hey Randy!

    Cool post. Transparency to me is about being authentic and making a connection on an emotional and honest level.

    Like Karleen, I don’t think you need to reveal all. You just need to be true to who you are so that there is no mismatch between your brand image and what your customers will actually experience.

    It is a great way to form trust which is key to making sales for so many businesses today.

    You’re right – I don’t care what Howard Schultz drinks but I do care about his business ethos and the history behind Starbucks. It is partly what makes me a die hard customer.

    Gerald Ratner projected an image about, Ratners, his jewellery business in the UK that did not reflect his actually thoughts. He promoted the business as providing luxurious and quality gifts for your loved ones.

    It was a multi-million pound business with stores in every town and city in the UK.

    Then the mask slipped when he said “We also do cut-glass sherry decanters complete with six glasses on a silver-plated tray that your butler can serve you drinks on, all for £4.95. People say, “How can you sell this for such a low price?”, I say, “because it’s total crap.”

    Needless to say that was it, the entire country stopped buying from him. End of business.

    An extreme case, for sure, but it is so easy to lose trust and respect and if you are not transparent and authentic then there is always a danger that you might drop the ball!

    I enjoy this type of post because things come out that you would normally share over a beer.

    I actually knew most of those things about you, great that we have so much in common and so much not in common. Having friends and colleagues with different perspectives is vital for personal growth.

    I’m appreciative of the fact that you are not politically correct – George Carlin was awesome. I still re-watch his shows when I want a guaranteed laugh. I talk straight and say what I mean – I have to work on being diplomatic!

    I too come from a newspaper family – my mother was a journalist, published author and moved into TV in the 1970’s. I’ve inherited her love of language and the power of words.

    As for hunting well my mum did, foxes anyway. I am a veggie but that is a health lifestyle choice for me. I’m not strict, fanatical or extreme about anything and knowing that information about you doesn’t cloud my opinion in any way.

    People really need to learn to be more tolerant and accepting of each others differences and celebrate them. The world would be a very boring place if we were all the same.

    Ramble, ramble, ramble…. lol

    • Kittie you are so kind! Thank you for the nice words of friendship and sharing the many similarities of our connected lifestyles. I do work on being diplomatic, but sometimes it is just HARD. I am able to temper a bit as to not really offend (I hope)! Also, the older I get the more tolerant and accepting I become, hoping that remains with me…NJoy the day and look forward to our future exchanges, RCB

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