Marketers Ruin Everything

Oh, great. US Cinema Ad Spending is Up 15%. Didn’t you used to love get to the theater 10 minutes before a movie started? I did. Watch the previews of coming attractions, watch the movie, go home. But that’s long since been ruined by marketers!

Now, I have to sit through ad slides for local Chinese restaurants, then the commercials start rolling. Seeing that Diet Coke commercial by two college film students was not what I had in mind when I plunked down $22 for my wife and I to go see 3:10 to Yuma (my favorite movie this year). Especially because I have been watching that same commercial for the entire summer. I have since stopped drinking Diet Coke in protest.

Here’s how marketers ruin everything that’s fun. A cool new social networking site is introduced. People go there to meet new friends, play music, talk about themselves. Then a brilliant marketer at Microsoft says, “How can we use Facebook as a marketing vehicle?” He might as well been saying, “How can we ruin Facebook?” I already have to have a Google ID to log in to YouTube and a Yahoo ID to log in to Flickr. Damn the lot of you, marketers (present company excluded).

Newsflash to marketers: Not everyone wants to be marketed to all the time.

You have to try hard to get away from advertising. There are ads at the movies, in video games, on restaurant menus, even on airplane flight paths. The big question marketers seem to ask is: “How can we weasel our way into every nook and cranny of peoples lives?”

Here’s the point. Most marketers operate under the myth that mere exposure, or as much exposure as you can get, is what sells things. Not true. If it were true then the company with the most ads wins. There would be no need for branding or creativity. Of course, that would also eliminate the need for marketers. You see the dilemma.

The irony is that people actually want information on things they might want to buy. But they want it in it’s proper place. That place is NOT while people are training for a triathlon.

My advice is this: if you are going to market don’t think like a marketer. Market to people where they want to be marketed to. That’s not when I’m ordering a pizza.

For practical marketing ideas and small business marketing case studies, see our other blog: The Idea Spot.

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  1. […] not Plaxo’s fault, it’s just that marketers ruin everything with overuse. With apologies to Doc Searls and David Wienberger, not all markets are conversations. […]

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