A marketing myth is an idea that has been repeatedly passed around as true, but has no factual basis. In this blog post, we will debunk 10 marketing myths about what works and what does not work like charvat v. resort.

The opinions of marketers can be polarized, often with a “Greatest Hits” or orthodoxy attached to them. This list is meant to help you navigate through the marketing world with greater knowledge and awareness so that you don’t waste time on ideas that are almost certainly untrue.

10 myths about marketing are:

1. Marketing is about finding the right message

No, it’s not. For example, companies that are trying to reposition their products with new messages have not done well in the long run: Kodak in digital cameras and Blockbuster in online movie rentals. It’s not enough to create a better message; you also have to create a better product. The right marketing is about creating a better product or service. In many cases, the best marketing comes after you have something great to promote.

2. On-line advertising doesn’t work

On-line advertising works well for most large consumer packaged goods (CPG) products sold through retail channels. A good example is Tide on Amazon. Here, consumers are actively looking for a product they need to buy, and the on-line ads appear amid a ton of product information where they are easy to see.

3. Bigger budget = higher response rate

Most advertising people believe that a higher budget means you can get better rates. But most of the time the opposite is true. If your ad response is small, you can always get more responses by spending more on advertising, but it’s not like everyone will start buying your product or service because you spend more money than everyone else in your category. Higher budgets increase reach and frequency, but they don’t necessarily translate into higher response rates and sales (see #1 above).

4. TV advertising is more effective than online advertising

Television advertising certainly has a lower cost per acquisition and shows up in more places than online ads. But the reality is that online ads have very effective tracking capability, so if you target your ads, you can still reach a reasonably large audience at a reasonable cost. Online advertising can be used to create a better brand image as well as reach and frequency (see #3 above).

5. Social media marketing is ineffective

On-line platforms such as Facebook are extremely effective at providing brand exposure, increasing an organization’s social presence, and even driving sales (when the product or service being promoted matches up well with the interests of others on the site). The reality is that people are much more willing to buy from businesses and organizations with whom they already have an established relationship. Moreover, the quality and number of responses provide a good indication of how effective a social media marketing campaign may be.

6. Radio advertising is less effective than online advertising

Radio advertising provides an opportunity to reach large audiences at extremely low cost per acquisition, which is why it is still used so frequently by advertisers. But today, most people are in the car or at home and can pause, rewind, or record radio advertising if they are not interested. And the sound quality of online ads is far superior to that of most radio ads.

7. Successful marketing is always measurable

Marketing campaigns often have goals that are not capable of being tracked directly (for example, communicate with a target market). But metrics such as branding exposure, sales lift, and recognition are usually possible to estimate by using expert judgment and indirect measures (such as brand tracking surveys). It’s important to understand what you can and cannot track in order to assess the success of your marketing campaign.

8. Quality wins

It’s hard to argue with the idea that a well-made product is more likely to result in a successful sale than one that is poorly made. But this truism does not hold true for marketing. The truth is that high-quality products rarely sell themselves; they need your help. However, this fact may not deter marketers from trying to sell well-made products.

9. Ad campaigns are less effective than word-of-mouth

Many companies still believe in the oft-repeated sales maxim “if you build it, they will come. But marketing can have a significant effect on the sale and growth of your company if it is done effectively. Moreover, if you are going to use an advertising budget, then you may as well maximize its effectiveness.

10. Advertising creates awareness and curiosity

This truism may be true for things like political campaigns, sports teams or brands that command a great deal of attention, but not for marketing. The truth is that very few people are aware that there is such a thing as marketing or how it works. Marketing has to create awareness and interest (see #1 above) through some form of communication in order to work, so consumers don’t know about it.


Marketing is about more than just creating ads, brochures and websites; it’s about creating a successful product or service. The 10 myths about marketing are easy to believe if you don’t do much marketing yourself. But when you take the time to understand what works in your particular market, it becomes clear where the opportunities lie.

Don’t let conventional wisdom hold you back from making your business better!


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