Six Pixels of Separation - The Podcast
May 20, 2012 8:33 AM

SPOS #306 - Truth In Marketing With Jonathan Salem Baskin

Welcome to episode #306 of Six Pixels Of Separation - The Twist Image Podcast. Jonathan Salem Baskin is becoming a marketing book juggernaut. In fact, there are few global branding strategist who are like Baskin. He's had a career that any Marketer would be jealous of. Having spent close to three decades in the branding and advertising world, Jonathan's resume is a who's who of the top brands in the world. Along with that, he is a prolific writer and thinker. We first connected in 2008 when his book, Branding Only Works On Cattle, came out because we share the same editor and publisher (Grand Central Publishing - Hachette Book Group). He then went on to write the book, Bright Lights & Dim Bulbs and then Histories Of Social Media. He's back with another book titled, Tell The Truth - Honesty is Your Most Powerful Marketing Tool (which he co-authored along with Sue Unerman - Chief Strategy Officer of MediaCom, a WPP agency). Along with that, Jonathan is a Blogger over at Dim Bulb and a bi-weekly columnist for Advertising Age. His opinions on Marketing, Social Media and the new world of branding will get you thinking and it's a pleasure to have him back on the show. Enjoy the conversation...

Enjoy the conversation...

Here it is: Six Pixels Of Separation - The Twist Image Podcast - Episode #306 - Host: Mitch Joel.

Download the Podcast here: Six Pixels Of Separation - The Twist Image Podcast - Episode #306 - Host: Mitch Joel.

By Mitch Joel

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  • Posted by Minter Dial
    Mitch Joel

    First, I must say that I have not read Jonathan's book. Meanwhile, I enjoyed the conversation and wanted to add in my two cents.

    My bottom line: I think that truth is valuable and desirable in principle. However, I cannot subscribe to its being the new form of marketing. For brands and marketers that have lost credibility, truth and honesty are most likely a necessary way to claw back trust. However, I think that the human being is inherently paradoxical and that truth is not necessarily what he/she is looking for. In certain areas, absolutely: the price, the scientific research, the list of ingredients, the stated location and hours of a shop, etc. However, we don't want or need the whole truth.

    But, as I write above, the human being's complex mind is a walking, talking paradox. We want to be unique, but be part of community. We want to live long, but smoke. We want to be considered kind, but are intrinsically selfish. A kid wants freedom, but appreciates structure. We love progress, but are afraid of change.

    As such, we want truth, but when it suits us.

    In a recent seminar I gave, discussing the image and representation of "plus size" or "full size" women, the question raised was the "truth" behind certain images. Is it right to portray a size 40 or 42 to encompass ALL plus size women? One avowedly plus size woman in the audience said that, just because she was overweight, did not mean that she wanted or was attracted to a true-to-life overweight woman in an image. She wanted something closer to a hint of truth, but not the whole truth.

    Reply
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