Marketing is the practice of leading a person to make new choices, to become something new by choosing the promise you offer them. Leadership is the practice of making people feel safe so that they might trust you.
If marketing is leadership and leadership is trust, marketing is trust.
Good leaders make you feel safe. Good marketers do, too.
We seek the safety of the tribe. Being accepted into a group of people like us, who believe what we believe, who do what we do, makes us feel buffered against all the uncontrollable forces around us. Just as good leaders help us feel as though we're part of their tribe, good marketers help to build up a tribe around the thing they're offering and the problem they're solving.
Feeling safe in a tribe means believing that the leader of the tribe will put the needs of the tribe ahead of his or her own interests. Good leaders do this effectively, as is well illustrated in Simon Sinek's Leaders Eat Last. Good marketers build a brand that authentically has the customer's interest at heart. Of course, the business must be viable. But -- if your marketing makes you seem like you're out for a buck, the people you're seeking to engage won't want to give you their bucks.
Want to learn more?
Check out this episode of the TED Radio Hour exploring Trust and Consequences - what it is, how we create it in each other.
Many marketers point to Simon Sinek's TED Talk explaining that people buy why you do what you do, not just what you're doing. Take a look at his other TED Talk, exploring why good leaders make you feel safe, too.
Read Michael Schrage's, Who Do You Want Your Customers to Become?