The core purpose of marketing is to get a reaction. To get people talking about your products or services. Naturally, marketing appeals to human emotions, and is based on human psychology. With that, there’re going to be different types of triggers that would get the reaction of 2 different people. What seems to be funny to one person, could be perceived as offensive by another. With 2014 almost behind us, and oh so many “marketing fails” resurfaced across different industries, we contemplate on why these marketing fails happen and how to avoid them.
Research and planning
One of the first questions that should be addressed is your target audience – who you are talking to and why they should care. The more targeted your marketing campaign is the more effectively you will be able to communicate your message across. In the example of Apple’s marketing disaster with making U2’s album available via iCloud – their target audience was practically the whole world. Some of the people who received the album did not even know the band, so they did not appreciate the gesture. Had they had their marketing campaign more targeted, specifically towards those people who were interested in that type of music, the outcome could have been different.
Ability to react quickly
We live in a fast-paced world and things change quickly. The truth is, if you want to be innovative and if you want your marketing to be creative, you have to be courageous enough to step out of the norm and try something different. Planning a marketing strategy and being able to quickly react and shift your strategy is critical if you want your campaign to be clever and relevant. Making sure that your marketing agency is available to make appropriate changes fast is vital.
Common sense + your branding
Common sense in alignment with your existing brand. Ask yourself – why do we run this marketing campaign? What does it mean to us? Is this something we believe in as a brand, as a company, or is this something we are trying to do because it is trendy and could potentially get us noticed. Asking this question will ensure that your marketing campaign is not only relevant to your target audience, but is also supporting your branding.
Marketing is not exact science. It’s art. It’s based on educated guesses. Brilliant marketing requires creative thinking and courage. Marketing agencies have to think differently, try new things and (sometimes) fail, in order to grow. How the aftermath of a failed marketing campaign is handled that’s a story on its own. And that could be another opportunity to build a stronger brand, and get the reaction you were originally going for.
Happy marketing. Happy growing in 2015!
Need help defining your marketing strategy for 2015? Get in touch – we love talking marketing >>! Or come by our Creative Greenhouse. We are conveniently located on Robson Street, Vancouver. And we always have chocolate… Always.