One of the biggest gripes with marketing today is that consumers have no idea what happens to their information from even the slightest engagement with a brand. The lack of clarity is deeply unsettling and creates a trust deficit between the brand and the customer. This is contradictory to arguably, the single most important thing that every marketer is trying to achieve — trust.
This mistrust is amplified in the digital world we live in where every action, click, scroll and tap is tracked. This conflict is all too common between an unassuming (and quite often unaware) consumer and the marketer who has their objectives.
Should the marketer stop marketing? No.
Should the consumer know everything about marketing? No.
Enter Ethical Marketing.
What if we considered a scenario where the onus is on the brand and the marketer to set morally responsible and ethical guidelines for how they carry out their marketing? This list of do’s and don’ts is not definitive and this approach is self-imposed and self-policed too. Some of the questions to be asked sound like this:
- Am I collecting data for data’s sake or do I know how I want to use it?
- Do I really need to collect all that information?
- Is not having a small piece of information going to have a large-scale business impact?
- Do my customers know what happens with their information when they engage with my brand – online and offline?
So, what is Ethical Marketing?
Ethical marketing is an approach that focuses on the company’s responsibilities to the public, customers, and employees while making marketing decisions. It takes into account the moral implications of marketing decisions and the potential impact on all stakeholders. The goal of ethical marketing is to create a long-term, trusting relationship between the company and its customers. This means considering the ethical implications of your actions and making sure that your marketing efforts are in line with your ethical principles.
Why should businesses adopt Ethical Marketing?
By reaffirming these basic values—honesty, responsibility, fairness, inclusivity, and transparency—businesses strengthen consumer trust. The marketing landscape is constantly evolving, and with the rise of digital marketing, the need for ethical marketing practices has never been more vital. With so much information available at our fingertips, it can be easy to forget that there is a responsibility to the people being marketed to.
Marketing can be morally good and beneficial to both the customer and the company. It can be tempting to cut corners or take shortcuts while marketing, but doing so can have serious consequences. Not only can it damage your reputation and hurt your business, but it can also lead to legal trouble. Our marketing campaigns are designed to address the long-term needs of all stakeholders, including consumers, employees, and society as a whole. An ethical marketing program ensures that your marketing is always on the up.
Here’s an easy way to get started: Consider making your email subscription forms opt-in, rather than opt-out. It may slow the rate of your list growth but you’ll have a much more engaged subscriber base.