Saturday, November 14, 2009

The Death of Common Sense Marketing

Some trends are starting to irritate this living crap out of me lately.  Here’s a few…

  • “Site” is not the same as “Sight” – Please tell your marketing and web developer folks this shocking piece of information.  Saying “…keep them out of site” is just wrong and stupid.  It reflects poorly on your company to (a) use the correct spelling, and (b) fact-check what you publish to the world.  Sorry to pick on Quest Software, but I needed a quick example.
  • Starting Sentences with “and so…” – This seems to be most prevalent with persons of the Northwest persuasion (i.e. Seattle area).
  • Failing to Define Acronyms on first use – It seems that authors of journal articles (in particular) have taken it upon themselves to borrow from the medical journal style of writing.  I’m talking about using acronyms repeatedly, yet failing to establish the expanded meaning early on, let alone on the first use.  This is very bad practice and leaves a lot of potential readers in the cold.  Not everyone knows what “IP” means.  Intellectual Property?  Internet Protocol?  Internal Procedure?
  • Don’t use Social Media marketing unless you’re Sociable – Every corporate marketing manager thinks it is pure genius to set up a Facebook page and a Twitter account. These two in particular are intended to be two-way communication platforms.  If you only use them to broadcast marketing propaganda without fielding comments and questions in return, you are being disengenuous and ignorant.  It shows how out of touch you really are.  A classic example of this is Hampton Roads Transit (HRT) who doesn’t even monitor their Twitter account.
  • Don’t kill more trees just to say you’re being “green”IBM is the king of this completely stupid mindset.  Trying to convince someone, whomever, that they’re being stewards of ecological resources, while doing so on enormous glossy color printed inserts, and even additional insert cards, throughout magazines.  This has become a laughing point for companies like IBM.
  • Stop Treating Us Like We are Blind – Car ads on TV all make the same claim that their product is unique, different, and excitingly so, when it’s obvious that 99 percent of cars are almost exact duplicates of the competition.  Take the labels off of most modern cars and 9 in 10 people simply cannot identify them.  This is called “branding failure” and denotes a serious need to fire your designers and your marketing team.  (pssst: there are lots more waiting to take their places)
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