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A friend recently told me that he would place marketers beneath lawyers on the scum ladder. It was an interesting comment considering he knew I worked in marketing and his fingers were crossed for a marketing role he’d recently applied for himself.

It’s not the first time I’ve heard hostility toward the term, but it did get me thinking how much of a dirty word marketing had become. It was acceptable, even encouraged, to market oneself daily. To manage personal Instagram, Facebook and Twitter accounts. To sell our ideas to friends and strangers through creating content of our own and sharing content created by others. But speak of marketing. Profit from marketing. Have pride in marketing. They were sins.

Considering marketing is solely the process of communicating the value of a product or service for the purpose of selling, it seems even without marketers we have marketing. The fisherman calling his fish ‘fresh’. The carpenter describing her works as ‘hand-crafted’. The cynic describing his mind as ‘analytical’.

Marketing isn’t a choice when you have something to gain. And we all have something to gain. Or, more to the point, something to lose. Whether we like it or not, the connection economy has made our online brands just as important as our offline personas. It’s no longer a question of should I market myself online. It’s a question of how should I market myself online. Don’t punish the postal service for your bills. We’re all marketers. Market on. And shall the most authentic rise.