The Challenge: Manipulation is Real

In our world today, industries accommodate for the human demand of fast, cheap and convenient. We not only buy what we need or want, we instead buy what we don’t need and often, what we don’t even want.

Ever do that? Buy what you don’t even want? I think we’ve all done it because we’ve been sucked into some scheme or an ad or just not being able to say no.

All because we were manipulated.

Marketers, advertisers and the media have encouraged a shopping mentality that contributes to extreme environmental damage and harm being done to innocent people and animals as well as in our own deteriorating mental and physical state.

This kind of buying mentality can result in compulsive buying disorder (CBD) which is a dangerous illness that can tear families apart, enabling serious debts, decreased self-worth, etc.

All in the name of manipulation.

Watch the video

The Result: Mental and Environmental Damage

We’ve enabled a depressed society because we’ve learned to value materialism. A superficial lifestyle that doesn’t align with our values as deeply emotional human beings.

Have you noticed that people living outside the modern world are considered ‘less fortunate’ but in reality, they’re actually more satisfied, generous and grateful. Why? Because they value and respect human relationships and environmental surroundings as opposed to material things?

They live a genuine minimalistic lifestyle where ‘less is more’ is cherished. Many of us have started to embrace this kind of lifestyle but, to be honest, we’re completely challenged by it. I know I am!

Only recently have we begun to understand what kind of a monster we’ve created and are now on a tight deadline to try to undo the damage we’ve done.

If we can inspire companies to produce and market their products ethically and simultaneously help inspire people to shop consciously, we can not only replenish the resources we still have on Earth but also become a mentally and physically healthier and happier society as a whole.

This shift has already started, but is moving at a very slow pace and has now resulted in greenwashing. There are plenty of examples of larger brands ‘going green/er’ just for profit’s sake, but in reality, only their marketing has changed to accommodate the demand, not their impact in this world.

The Solution: Ethical Marketing
Revolutionizing the Marketing Industry

Meet the ethical move.

It’s time to start practicing Ethical Marketing. Ethical Marketing is not about competition battles, price wars and manipulative copywriting. Instead, Ethical Marketing nurtures human connection, collaboration and transparency. The GDPR was just one small step toward practicing Ethical Marketing.

But what exactly is the difference between marketing and ethical marketing? That’s exactly the question I’ve been asking myself for quite some time. I know what feels right to me, but what I feel will be different than what Susan in the US feels or Alyssa is Sweden. What I deem ‘ethical’ may be different than what you consider ethical.

And this is a challenge, so as soon as I heard about the ethical move. and their mission, I thought, I have to talk to their founder, Alice Karolina Smith. Like, now! And so I did. And we immediately connected because we both have similar views about ethical marketing and similar challenges about defining it.

But that’s what’s so incredible about being in this ethical space. We CAN collaborate and work on this movement together. We CAN make a difference in the way people sell. And so we are!

The First Step

Take the Pricing Pledge

the ethical move logo

What’s all this crap about lowering every price so that it ‘looks and feels’ cheaper? Slapping a $249 price tag on something instead of a rounded $250. Seriously, what’s up with that?

The answer? Pure psychology. 100% manipulation.

I’ve always had a problem with these odd prices, but it’s so commonplace that I’ve used them too. And I bet you have too, right? It’s OK, I’m sure everyone has.

But not anymore. I’ve recently taken the pledge to not use them again and that makes me feel all warm and fuzzy.

Want to feel warm and fuzzy too? By taking this pledge, you’d be taking the first step to not ‘mess with people’s minds’. It was an easy pledge for me because I already had a few of these rounded prices in place before I even heard about the ethical move. My Customer Attraction Masterclass was priced at $250. I had to change a few consultation prices to consent, but there again, not a problem. All in the name of Ethical Marketing.

What does changing my prices actually do though?
Plant a seed. Start the revolution. Be the change.

The Ethical Marketing Revolution

This is the dawning of the age of the Ethical Revolution. It is ON baby!

What I mean by that is that we, as consumers of products and services, are starting to think before we buy. We no longer want to support harmful industry ways. It’s why I’m a vegan even though I’m addicted to cheese and suffer from withdrawal symptoms and get harassed by family and friends. It’s why we look at labels and ask questions like: ‘Who made our clothes?’ It’s why the industries are now starting to change their ways. It’s why you’re in the business you’re in! So that you don’t harm humans, plants, animals or our environment.

But it doesn’t stop with production. There’s more to running a sustainable business than just producing an ethical product or service. How you market and sell makes a huge difference too.

Changing your prices to rounded numbers is the first step. In this video, I chatted with a few changemakers about how to communicate this price change because we’ve been manipulated so much that we actually now fear people will see that $250 and think, ‘oh no, that’s too expensive, forget about it!’

If you feel you need to communicate this, my tip is to be honest, transparent and add some humor to it because these ‘odd prices’ are a bit ridiculous when you think about it. Just add a little light into the darkness of manipulation.

The Next Step: What does Ethical Marketing Mean to You?

After prices are ‘normal’, what else can we do to revolutionize the marketing industry to turn it into an ethical industry so that we can become a healthier and happier society?

What about copywriting? How do you feel when you receive 3 mails a day during a company’s launch? About these ‘Last Chance’ mails? Does it make you feel like you better act now or else? Honestly, what does that ‘or else’ mean anyway? Will there be no more products to sell after a certain date. Hardly.

Is adding that feeling of urgency and scarcity in your communication also manipulative? There is a time when you actually have a deadline, e.g. with an event and there’s a time when it’s not necessary. Let me explain.

I taught a masterclass on Tuesday, May 15th and thought about letting three people in for free. Unfortunately, I thought about it a little too spontaneously and didn’t have enough time to properly announce it, so what did I do? I invited my email subscribers and my changemaker’s group members to fill out a short form to apply for a free spot. I gave them 24 hours to do this because that’s all the time I had to prepare for these three extra seats. There was a sense of urgency.

Was that necessary? In my case, yes! It was a free scholarship, so I think this is OK, but I still felt awful because I know there were other potential candidates who would have loved to have had the chance to apply. Lesson learned: I will give more than 24 hours for my next scholarship so that more people have a chance to apply!

In the past, I usually send one last mail announcing that I have ?? spots left. In my classes, I only want a limited number of people because I offer individual care during and after the class so I know how much I can handle. BUT, was it actually necessary to write that I still had ?? spots left? No! I could have left that out completely and just wrote about the course content and how my participants will benefit. No one needs to know how many spots are left.

However, some people may feel that it’s 100% ethical to announce the ?? spots that are left. It’s done all the time! Every single day. What’s so wrong with that?

It makes the reader feel they need to act now or else. It instills that urgency and scarcity feel and that’s manipulative. So no more ?? spots left in my mails. I’m done!

We only start to make a difference after we become aware of our actions.

“Ethical Marketing is about connecting with like-minded people and coming together to initiate positive changes in your industry and ultimately, the world.”

What does Ethical Marketing Mean to You?

Take the Survey!

What does Ethical Marketing mean for you? What kinds of things do you feel is manipulative? What have you started doing in terms of supporting Ethical Marketing? Have you also taken the pledge by the ethical move.?
Please comment below and let’s talk!

Rock On,


Photo credit: Oscar Keys on Unsplash.


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