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Intro Okay. It happens. We all make mistakes. When you’re a business, small or large, there are risks to marke5ng and adver5sing. And when pu<ng your name out there as a business it becomes signiﬁcantly more important to make sure your message and methods are well-‐planned and even more carefully executed. Otherwise, you’ll end up like New Coke or Crystal Pepsi — a marke5ng train-‐wreck from which people just can’t avert their gaze.
Mobile Marketing FailThere’s actually a site dedicated to mobile marke5ng fails. Check out this par5cular one: hKp://mobilemarke5ngfail.com/2011/10/05/iloop-‐showcases-‐super8-‐mobile-‐fail/ SMS campaigns can be a great driver for business, but you have to make sure that the followup is as strong as the ini5al outreach. In this example, iLoop forces a download on the user, they clearly haven’t considered if the content is to be viewed on a mobile phone or a tablet, the delivered content is poorly created, and they send a text to the user asking for informa)on that they already have. Fail ra4ng: 3/10
Facebook Marketing FailThere’s been a lot of debate about the merits of adver5sing on Facebook, but no company should fall into the “bait and switch” method. Case in point: Source: hKp://epicmarke5ngfails.blogspot.com/2012/04/facebook-‐marke5ng-‐fail.html This is a Facebook ad for a den)st. It’s safe to say that quite a number of those likes were for the OKawa Senators, not the dental studio. Doing this just proves that you have liKle or nothing of value to actually adver5se. Fail ra4ng: 5/10
Email Marketing FailEmail marke5ng is a great way to stay in contact with consumers and oﬀer special promo5ons. However, email marke5ng is a tool that can be used for great evil, as shown below: Source: hKp://www.aimclearblog.com/2012/05/08/email-‐marke5ng-‐hall-‐of-‐shame-‐3-‐classic-‐fails-‐to-‐avoid/ First of all, this campaign is way too aggressive – mailing every two days is akin to spam. Not to men5on, they sent the same person an email en5tled “Does She Like to Travel?” as well as “ The Sundress You’ll Wear All Summer.” The recipient is a male. Fail ra4ng: 5/10
e QR Code FailThere seem to be more ways to do QR codes wrong rather than there are ways to do them right. When used correctly they’re a wonderful way to interact with a web-‐savvy audience who might not be in front of the computer 24 hours a day. However, keep in mind that those who use QR codes are indeed web-‐savvy. See if you can ﬁgure out what is wrong with this picture: If you can’t tell because the leKering has been blurred out, this is an email sig with a QR code. What’s wrong? Well, in order to use the QR code, the user would have to print the signature, scan the computer with a smartphone, or scan a smartphone with a smartphone. Not par5cularly useful, bro. Not to men5on, if somebody is reading an email, they likely are already engaged with the internet as it is. Fail Ra4ng: 6/10
e Harpo FailHarpo is the name of Oprah Winfrey’s produc5on company. To make a long story short, in 1999, Harpo promised that any visitor to Oprah.com could print oﬀ a 5cket that would en5tle the bearer to two free pieces of grilled chicken and a biscuit at KFC. The coupon was only available for 24 hours. And who likes free chicken? Well, everybody in America does. Many KFC restaurants had to close their doors to staunch the demand, which lead to sit ins, ﬁghts, arguments, and more. This is a quintessen5al marke5ng fail. Lesson learned – always consider the product and discount you’re oﬀering. Fail ra4ng: 7/10
e Invariable Insensitive Twitter FailWhile this fail was not part of a marke5ng campaign, it aﬀected marke5ng nonetheless. A South American-‐based clothing store called Celeb Bou5que no5ced that #Aurora was trending on Facebook. They took the chance to post the following Tweet in an aKempt to hop on the trending hashtag bandwagon: Of course, they had no idea that the reason why #Aurora was trending was due to the shoo5ngs that occurred in Colorado at the screening of The Dark Knight Rises. Source: hKp://thenextweb.com/socialmedia/2012/07/20/celeb-‐bou5que-‐you-‐freaking-‐ morons/ Whoops. The Tweet was quickly rescinded and Celeb Bou5que started apologizing for the mistake, but the damage had been done. But no apology is going to make up for the hit that Celeb Bou5que’s reputa5on has suﬀered, and this likely won’t be forgoKen any 5me soon. Fail Ra4ng: 8/10
e Comprehensive FailThis famous fail was commiKed by a popular content delivery service – Nejlix. In the summer of 2011, Nejlix CEO Reed Has5ngs posted a blog post explaining that Nejlix was going to raise prices and split their streaming and DVD delivery into two diﬀerent services. Predictably, this set oﬀ a storm of scathing nega5ve feedback that lasted for about two months. To add insult to injury, Nejlix then decided to rebrand the DVD delivery aspect of their service as “Quikster,” which confused customers further. According to inc.com, Nejlix lost nearly a million subscribers. Nejlix is s5ll suﬀering from the blow. Adding insult to injury, Nejlix’s stock dropped from $300 a share in July of 2011 to $77 that same October. Ouch. Fail ra4ng: 9/10
ConclusionWhile marke5ng mix-‐ups can range from faux-‐pas to all-‐out disasters, it’s important to consider the consequences of a marke5ng plan gone wrong during its formula5on. There’s no subs5tute for shrewd planning when crea5ng your marke5ng campaign, and it’s just as important to consider oﬀ-‐the-‐cuﬀ messages. But whatever you do, just make sure that your marke5ng campaign doesn’t end up like a fender bender on the highway: something people can’t stop staring at.
AboutContent Equals MoneyContent Equals Money is a content wri5ng service that serves a wide variety of clients with top-‐shelf, sharable content. Our goal is to work with small companies in order to help them reap the same results from content marke5ng as the Fortune 500 companies. Content marke5ng is truly scalable and can work for all businesses and business sizes!