It is a running joke around Cardinal about how I don’t turn in blog posts on time. The reason? I am a terrible writer. Even when I do write something, I give it to 3 people in the office before publishing because I am so insecure about my writing. Well today when doing some work, someone in the company came across the following Google ad:
So while this ad may be effective in getting some ahem…excitable customers to visit this site, some people might be a bit put off by this ad, not to mention the people that will think it’s just a little, um, “cocky”.
All funnies aside, as Cardinal’s resident ethicist, there is much more here we should look at.
1. The client
When a client comes to an agency, that company is putting full trust in you. You not only become a part of the team, you literally speak for them. You share their message across the internet. It is your ethical obligation to have multiple checks and balances in order to ensure that nothing like the above is shared with the world.
2. Your reputation
In the agency world (as in life in general), all you have is your word. If you say you are going to do something, you do it. One of the things that I consistently tell clients is that we say what we are going to do, we do it, and then I come back and talk about how awesome we have done it. While this sounds cocky (and it is), clients appreciate it because it shows that we aren’t just snake oil salesmen. By not being hyper vigilant in editing and screening content published for a client, you put both your reputation and that of the client in jeopardy.
In summary, edit your work. Double check it, and then check it again. As we have learned from the ad above, the omission of a simple plural can completely change the meaning of the shortest snippet of ad copy. It is someone’s reputation and possibly your job that is on the line.