Wednesday, March 07, 2007
Thanks to Ann Handley at MarketingProfs Daily fix: http://www.mpdailyfix.com/2007/03/rediculess.html
A super conversation was generated. I chimed in a few times and I felt that Ben Davis of LESS sounded a bit condescending and I think the message of LESS could be better expressed in a "Less" mean-spirited way.
Mr. Davis took the time to write to me:
"Hi Tammy, So sorry to turn you off. Let me know if there’s any way I can win you back. I don’t really want BUY LESS be the issue. I’m much happier with the outward focus that Adage.com took. No one should care about BUY LESS. Everyone should care a bit about cause-related marketing, and making it more transparent. Best,--Ben Daviswords pictures ideas"
This was my response:
Ben, Thank you for writing to me.
I still have a problem with the LESS message. It comes across as mean-spirited, and that dilutes what the message actually is; holding cause related marketing to highly transparent standards.
My feeling is, if a company is going to sell a product, advertise it, market it, whore it, whatever and then give some percentage of the sale of that product to charity then so be it. RED is not a charity, it is a campaign, and if the companies who've joined the campaign spend massive amounts on advertising and give a small percentage to the cause. So be it.
I agree transparency needs to be monitored. I can see how a company could say it has a pro-cause philosophy, gain respect and make more sales and not actually give anything to a cause. That's fraud.
I also think companies calling themselves "green" should be held accountable too. I despise the de-salination advertisement by GE. What impact does this have on the oceans' habitats, etc. It feels icky and not green at all!
I digress. Transparency. Accountability. Good.
Many others have written about this debate and someday I will know how to imbed these links but for now here's a few other stories and POV's.