I really liked Tom Fishburne’s cartoon he posted last week titled Wizard of Ad with the balloon copy "Pay no attention to the company behind the curtain, just watch our ad." Tom writes "Someone in the group was talking about company transparency, and how reluctant many companies are to reveal their inner workings. The traditional approach is to concoct a persona via advertising and point to that instead.Yet, more and more consumers seem to be looking for the company behind the curtain. They’re no longer as swayed by the concocted brand image of advertising. Instead, they want to know who’s behind the products they buy."
This really rings true. So often company’s use their advertising to express their desired persona instead of what they are. Consumers aren’t fooled by this. An ad sets up expectations and if those expectations aren’t met when the consumer interacts with your company, then I think it is worse than if you hadn’t advertised at all. The reason it’s called a "brand promise" is because you are making a promise to your customers. I think my Mom was right, "Don’t make promises you can’t keep."