Every business has a product or service worth promoting, but a prolific marketing presence should not be your main goal.
A thoughtfully planned and well-executed campaign can easily outperform lazy, mass-media ad buys.
To save money, time, and headaches eager entrepreneurs eager need to be wary of poorly-executed campaigns and advertisements done in bad taste that can
cause more harm than good.
Examples such as Groupon’s 2011 Super Bowl
commercial, Sony’s white PSP ads and Molson Coors’ college drinking campaign earned each organization widespread public backlash and will forever haunt
these brands. To be more effective at marketing, businesses must be mindful of embarrassing themselves and offending customers. Ultimately, bad marketing
can be ruinous for customer loyalty and sales.
1. False promises negatively impact brand affinity.
Companies like Allstate Insurance, Avis Car Rental and
RadioShack have alluring taglines, but offer poor service.
While Allstate suggests, “You're in good hands with Allstate,” paying customers aren’t convinced. On ConsumerAffairs.com, the insurance company receives an average
rating of 1.1 out of five. Avis’ slogan, "We try harder," is similarly far from believable. It, too, maintains an abysmal rating of 1.2 out of five. Prior
to 2014, Radioshack touted, "You've got questions ... We've got answers." Unfortunately, its broken promises have awarded it a customer satisfaction rating
of 1.4 out of five.
Although a clever motto can be enough to motivate customers to walk into your store or visit your website, the experience you offer and the value you deliver are what matter the most.
To effectively manage consumer expectations and improve customer satisfaction, make promises you intend to keep.
Related: Keep Your Promises and Other Must-Read Business Tips
2. Bad data nets zero ROI for potentially profitable campaigns.
Organizations simply cannot afford to operate with bad data.
According to Econsultancy, “New research from Experian Data
Quality shows that inaccurate data has a direct impact on the bottom line of 88 percent of companies, with the average company losing 12 percent of its
In advertising, unique creatives are often tested against a control audience. In this instance, clean data might reveal that certain ads drive high
engagement and positive ROI while others underperform. With the flip of a switch, data-driven marketers would then turn off the creatives that provide
negative ROI and scale up spend on the high-performers. Without these sorts of insights, many marketers find themselves paying a fortune for traffic that does not convert.
3. Inconsistent experiences confuse customers.
Different things make different customers tick. In a world where technology allows us to personalize every marketing touch-point with consumers, many brands still fall short. Email blasts
include links to products that are no longer available. Advertising creatives direct audiences to unrelated pages on your site. At checkout, the coupon
that should have automatically been applied to a purchase is nowhere to be found.
Marketers need to regularly walk through the customer acquisition and engagement funnels to spot any errors or inconsistencies which may confuse customers
and deter audiences from completing their purchase.
Related: The 5 Worst Twitter Marketing Fails of 2014
4. Aggressive email blasts affect deliverability.
For mid-sized businesses, email marketing offers a
246 percent return on investment
. Some marketers forget the importance of proper audience segmentation. An email blast to your entire list of subscribers may cause recipients, in droves,
to mark your mail as spam.
Losing subscribers is the least of your worries. If you regularly receive complaints from recipients who mark your email as spam, your email service
provider may temporarily disable or permanently delete your account.
According to Campaign Monitor, “The industry standard for an acceptable
percentage of complaints per email campaign is less than 0.02 percent.” Anything above that is cause for concern.
5. Marketers fly blind when they operate in silos.
Marketers sometimes find themselves operating alone and on their own terms inside a bubble instead of interacting with their peers to
build a better product
and increase overall customer experience. Marketers, for their own purposes, should reach out to their colleagues in finance, sales, customer service,
product and engineering for valuable help and guidance.
Marketers operating in a silo may not realize which products customers rave about most, which offerings have the highest (and lowest) markup and which
tools or services are currently experiencing bugs or downtime.
6. Marketing to desktop users neglects a larger, growing audience.
Most advertisements and creatives are built and optimized for a desktop audience. What many marketers forget is they leave money on the table when they
fail to optimize their campaigns for mobile users.
In the U.S., consumers spend more time on
their mobile devices than they do on desktop computers. The future of marketing is mobile, as audiences have long shifted their attention towards smaller
screens with much faster Internet connections.
Marketers waste millions each year on desktop-optimized ads that are delivered to mobile audiences. Companies, instead, should prioritize developing
mobile-optimized ads first, and worry about desktop traffic later.
Firas Kittenah is the CEO at Amerisleep. A version of the article originally appeared on Entrepreneur.com. Copyright © 2016 Entrepreneur Media, Inc. All rights reserved.