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Why I HATE Most Advertising
July 07, 2015

Why I HATE Most Advertising

Greeting Sales and Marketer!

I have been wanting FOREVER to write an article about how much I HATE most advertising and so here it is (I know, readers may be familiar with my articles on badvertising but I STILL have an itch I need to get out of my system)

The reason I HATE most advertising is that they are "WE-Centric" Instead of "YOU"-Centric

I have spent 8 years of my life slogging away on my website/ blog trying to CONVINCE sales and marketers of ONE simple fact: "you" is the most important word in sales and marketing. Just think about it: what word could POSSIBLY be more important? Did you know that "I" is the most-used word in English? It stands to reason because people are self-centered (sales and marketers included!). However, if you really want to be SMART about things then why wouldn't you CATER to this ingrained need that humans have by REVERSING things and using "you" as much as you can? Someone might call this REVERSE PSYCHOLOGY or a fancy manipulative technique akin to selling "snakeskin oil" or what-have-you (we are ALL familiar with the jibes against those in our profession!). I do not care, to be honest. To me it makes plain honest sense

The thing about USING the word "you" - and this is where it gets REALLY hard for brands that just don't "get it" - is that you are not allowed to just SAY the word -- you have to put EVERYTHING behind it until you brand becomes TRULY customer-centric (it is so funny how people talk about being customer-centric and yet still use the word "I" as much as others!). You need to start your company or business or product line or sales and marketing plan with a BLUEPRINT that bases EVERYTHING around your customer. Product design: what does the customer want? Features: what does the customer NEED? Sales: what is the customer SAYING? Marketing: what do we say BACK to the customer? Service, support, finance, website design, storefront, you name it. The late Stephen Covey guided us to "begin with the end in mind" and in sales and marketing that END is a CUSTOMER

Back to advertising, my pet PEEVES are automotive advertising. Apart from Volkswagen and a couple of luxury brands, no other car maker seems to CONSISTENTLY produce great advertising (VW had no choice; it was either masterful advertising or a painful death... how in God's name do you raise your brand out of the ignominy of being Hitler's "People's Car"?). Most Japanese manufacturers produce hit-or-miss campaigns and folks like Mercedes fare on the low end of the scale despite the fantastic automobiles they manufacture (I recently pitched them but the VP of Marketing ended up having to honor his contractual obligations to his (advertising) AGENCY and so here we are...)

How many ads have you seen - in the last WEEK - that show some shiny car of the other, loaded with gizmos, flying through water spray - or sand! - or roaring up a curving mountainside road while the announcer drones on and on (in the most somber tone): "Car and Driver Car of the Year"... "3.7 litre V6 engine"... "most interior space than any other automobile in it's class" and all kinds of NONSENSE that we have ALL heard too much of and are simply not INTERESTED in anymore!

I secretly wonder whether it is a all a great big PLOY and that automotive advertisers have one up on the rest of us sales and marketers who abhor all of the "WE this", "WE that"... perhaps these ads really work... or could it be that the average JOE or JANE is a complete sucker and gets taken in by this drivel? No -- if there is one thing I still have faith in it is the uncanny INTELLIGENCE of today's consumer. I tell you, people have been ripped off SO many times by the time they reach adulthood that everyone is now a GENIUS at deconstructing DISINGENUOUS advertising

Anyway, there you have it! I think I have written enough for now...

You may have noticed that I don't send out e-zine/ blog missives like I used to... the reason is that once I get started I keep on keeping on over a period of days - and weeks! - and in the meantime my brain keeps coming up with all sorts of NEW stuff that I want to write about

If you need help, advice or ideas pertaining to advertising then please let me know! I am happy to do some work for you for FREE just to see if we are on the same wavelength (and just because that is how I learn about new businesses and markets that I may be unfamiliar with) and just because I really think you can make the world a BETTER place one person - or in this case one AD! - at a time

Sales is SMILES, Marketing is MEASUREMENT

(425) 835-3581

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