Kate Kaye has written an essay on word of mouth marketing. It raises some interesting discussion points, not least of which being her belief that stealth marketing isn’t a significant issue in Word of Mouth issues.
Jonathan over at the Mouthpiece blog responds:
Completely agree. Those of us working to create marketing efforts based on creating connection between consumers and companies know that there’ s no issue more significant than stealth marketing. Let’s call Stealth Marketing what it really is – Traditional Marketing. It’s more of the same: playing loose and fast with the facts.
If marketers working in Word of Mouth, Consumer Interaction concepts want to continue in this field, they’d better do everything in their power to root out and destroy Stealth Marketing efforts. When people wonder what the true motivations of their friends are for suggesting certain products/services, we’re all out of a job.
The rest of the ethics discussion doesn’t matter if Stealth Marketing doesn’t take top billing.