“The creation of value is the only and everlasting source of profit.”
—Masatoshi Yoshimura

“Keep in mind that Ralph Nader could be the first customer for your product.”

My father taught me well.  He owned a couple of small clothing stores and always told me, “The Customer is King.”  In fact, he had a small sign above the entrance to the stores which read: “Through these doors walk the greatest people on Earth.”  And since he genuinely believed that, he marketed his stores with integrity. His wisdom and example have certainly enhanced my marketing skills and made me understand the importance of respecting the buyer, knowing and understanding who that person really is and living the rule that Napoleon Hill expressed: “Our rewards in life are always in direct proportion to our contribution and service.”  To me, this means that there can be no profit, no sales, no rewards reaped in any business unless there is first a desire to serve, to contribute to the customer.

Today, the direct response industry is part of a brave new marketing world.  The true success stories will be those based on ethics, honesty, and marketing an outstanding product or service with integrity.  I think we can all thank the Electronic Retailing Association (ERA) formerly National Infomercial Marketing Association (NIMA), and all of it members, for its contribution to this industry.  Through their diligent efforts in establishing ethical programming and advertising guidelines for Infomercials, along with the tremendous service they have provided in educating others about this industry, NIMA is to be commended.   I foresee the industry growing into one that will be based on “consumerism-the customer is king concept”. At its foundation is the goal of delivering quality—more than you promise—and always providing sincere customer service and valuable information.  Zig Ziglar, author, lecturer and salesman extraordinaire, discovered that the word “sell” in Norwegian actually translates into “to serve.”  Selling by serving is integrity marketing.
Consumerism vs. Producerism

Several years ago my client, Gerrard Neirenberg, author of "The Art of Negotiating," and one of the foremost experts in the complex profession of Business Negotiating, described to me a valuable lesson he learned about how important it was to truly serve the consumer with integrity:  

In 1972, he was involved in labor negotiations between the United Auto Workers (UAW) and all the major U.S. automobile manufacturers. When agreement was reached by both sides and contracts were signed, Mr. Neirenberg concluded that the negotiations had been successful because both parties were satisfied.  It was a "win-win" situation. However in just three short years the American automobile manufacturers lost tremendous ground to the emerging Japanese automobile industries.  In order to meet the demands of their contracts they were trying to force their large "expensive" cars (producerism) onto the market without regard to what the potential consumer really wanted (consumerism); economy and quality.    Mr. Neirernberg  realized that this “win- win” deal was not successful after all. In fact it was part of a blueprint for failure. How was this possible?  The negotiation had failed to consider one very important party - the consumer. It was a tough and expensive lesson to learn.  Successful marketing depends on, above all, the concept of serving the consumer first.  In this way, everybody wins!

In the world of DRTV, Integrity Marketing means giving people valuable information whether or not they buy your product.  It means providing a high quality product or service that fills a customer’s needs and wants.  Integrity Marketing means always giving people more than they expect—under promise and over deliver.   It means always presenting a truthful, sincere presentation.  People know the difference between hype and real value.   

Since marketing is the umbrella under which all sales activities are planned and executed, under which all advertising is created (based on marketing research), and all public relations, promotion and publicity activities are formulated and carried out, it becomes the key to a successful business. More than ever before, strategic marketing, planning and their proper execution must be done with integrity.  “As you sow, so shall you reap”.  Plant seeds of honesty, ethics and a sincere desire to help others get what they want, and your harvest will be plentiful.

“Call Now 1-800 -  How to Profit from Direct Response Television Advertising”  Copyright 2006  Rodney H. Buchser

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