It’s nothing new. Some marketing person has the brilliant idea to run a viral marketing campaign that then causes negative publicity because it was clearly a bad idea (for example: micheal jordan hoax and burger king shower-girl). Was the original intention to deceive or just cause a stir? Who knows? Did the marketing turn out the way the company’s had hoped? Marketing for hype often goes wrong and leaves a bad taste in everyone’s mouth.
Marketing should always be done for a reason – and a business reason at that. It should communicate a message that’s aimed at achieving some business goal. Some marketing is pretty direct – sales or promotions – leading to a direct action (lead or sale). Other marketing has a more general purpose in mind, usually branding, which increases the company’s overall image towards some perception that positively affects product or service selection.
When marketing is done for hype or shock value, it rarely goes well. Yes, there are certain brands that can pull it off, but they’ve generally carefully crafted their brand image and message to account for the hype – it’s not done haphazardly. So, marketers – when you’re designing a marketing strategy and campaign, please make sure you keep in mind basic marketing principles. And if you do decide on a campaign of hype – don’t be surprised when it all goes wrong – account for risk in your planning and come with strategies to mitigate it and deal with the negative.
What do you think? Do you like “hype” marketing?
(photo by Pink Sherbet Photography @ FlickrCC)