Quality Over Disingenuousness
Written by Carl Foisy
Most people are aware of the phrase and fundamental ‘Quality Over Quantity’, but this article is all about Quality Over Disingenuousness. Yes, the original phrase Quality Over Quantity holds true in many real life cases, but these days with social media, we must also focus on the genuineness of those we follow and hold up on pedestals as ‘influencers’. As a status and label, influencers can be good for business, but in reality the strength of any word of mouth referral is based on the genuineness of the person sharing. How one person (outside of superstars or celebrities) can have tens of thousands of followers (with little to no regionality, or core focus on intentions, for following a person beyond eye-candy or time-wasting entertainment) while being true and honest with their audience, is a hard one to answer.
These non-celebrity ‘influencers’ must be focused on a specific niche like food, fashion, music, etc, or are generating an audience across the world due to eye-candy, which tends to lead to more disingenuous intentions. And it’s clear as day when an influencer-type is being paid to promote a business. Very much like the scene in Forrest Gump when Forrest was paid to sell and pitch ping-pong paddles. His influencer status was clearly a commercial and these days is seen right through. In no way am I saying that all ‘influencers’ are hocus-pocus, but the disingenuousness oozing out of some of these people is too much to consume, and must be tuned out like we do with commercials across the board. Quality and genuineness wins each time, and is the most sustainable way to handle things.
After reading algorithm details released by Twitter’ leadership, it was very eye opening that what is fed to us on our ‘news feeds’ is totally based on disingenuousness and a “favoritism” style of sharing and distribution tactics. The people, brands, personalities etc. that we show interest in and connect with, only matter when the popularity contest is turned on….and that stinks. It’s easy to imagine that other social platforms are working their algorithms in the same way. And what we as users get, is lacking quality and full of disingenuousness.
This isn’t a position on free speech or freedom of press, but rather a position on being able to receive and absorb what’s real and good. When an influencer says ‘We’ll be back, several more times’ they’d better follow through. But the reality is, they’re most likely just saying it in hopes to stimulate a ‘viral following’ simply because they said so. But actions will always speak louder than words. If a person says they’ll be back, they’d better. Because saying one thing and doing another is 100% disingenuous…which is the premise of this article.
We at Marketing by the C practice pure, true and reliable influencing. We influence by way of sharing information and knowledge, all while practicing what we preach. Sustainability with sharing is crucial for businesses that want to build a legacy and history. Working with many legacy establishments that have been in operation for over a decade, we’ve seen these “fly-by-night” style methods like ‘influencer marketing’ come and go. Years ago, it was the strength of coupon deals that sent people in a mad dash to get a piece, that eventually landed several locally owned businesses out of money, and sometimes out of business all together. With the introduction of multiple social media platforms, there was speculation that users would shift from one to another. The reality of it is that users are on multiple platforms, not just one. Now with the rise in made-up influencing, we’re expecting to see the truth surface in the effectiveness in these self-proclaimed strong “sharers”….and in the end, the genuine will outshine the disingenuous, as it always does.
The moral of this article is to come correct. No matter how large or small your following or audiences are, speak the truth and deliver the realness. Be true and share with integrity. These are the factors that plant the seeds that grow and produce the valuable and long-lasting fruit. And while social media influencers might be able to deliver drops of goodness to local businesses, their longevity is thin unless they practice what they preach, and put their money where their mouth is……funny part is, most of these influencers don’t pay for things like meals, gear, experiences etc…..so their money is indeed not where their mouth is….and in the long run, it shows.