Failed marketing campaigns: how to avoid disaster

In marketing, there can be many different objectives you can aim to achieve. Those can include impressions, page views, likes/comments/shares, and purchases. Having customers that believe in your products or services enough to purchase them are simply essential. If you are not doing something different and making money, you cannot afford to pay your employees and stay in business. This is something that many companies struggle with every day behind the scenes.

One of the most effective ways that you can convince your users to purchase your products or services is by creating effective marketing campaigns. There are so many different types of campaigns out there, and we are constantly seeing new ones that push the envelope like never before. You probably see various marketing campaigns per day, some which are better than others and some that you may not even realize are marketing campaigns.

As with most things, some marketing campaigns work out better than others and there are a dozen bad ideas for every good one. Let’s take a look at some examples of failed marketing campaigns and what you can do to avoid the mistakes that these companies made.

Failed marketing campaign examples

Chase Bank botches #MondayMotivation Twitter campaign

The hashtag #MondayMotivation has been popular for a few years now with many people and companies utilizing it weekly. In 2019, Chase Bank decided to hop on this train and send out some tweets. The infamous tweet, below, received backlash because it was considered shaming on those with little money. Chase issued a swift apology and promised to do better in the future. They are lucky they acted quickly as this could have been blown into a bigger issue.

 Chase’s Twitter blunder can show you how important it is to have others review your work before you send it out. You may not realize that your phrasing can be construed the wrong way and can lead to a lot of trouble for your company.     

Coca-Cola makes a huge mistake with “New Coke”

This is one of the most well-known failed marketing campaigns simply because of how big of a mistake it was. In the mid-1980s, Coke decided to switch up their soda recipe after consumers took more of a liking to Pepsi. This was Coke’s way of admitting that they were intimidated by Pepsi’s success and wanted to get back on top. Even though focus groups claimed to love the new recipe’s taste, the public hated it. They saw it as a betrayal from a classic formula that millions grew up with. “New Coke” spawned legal action, boycotts, talk show segments, and more. The backlash was so bad that Coca-Cola changed the formula back fairly quickly.

This example goes to show that if you do not have a glaring reason to change your company’s key component, it is best not to do it. Change can be very good, but not all the time and this example can show what too big of a change can do to you. “New Coke” is without a doubt a failed marketing campaign that Coca-Cola is not likely to repeat.   

Burger King gets weird (again)

With a company as large as Burger King, occasional marketing mistakes are not too uncommon. The company seems to have multiple marketing departments in different countries that they have restaurants in. In Russia, Burger King thought it was a good idea to create a challenge surrounding the World Cup soccer tournament and free burgers. In short, the company said if a woman conceives a child with a World Cup athlete, they will get a lifetime supply of burgers and 3 million roubles (Russian currency). Needless to say, this was a bad idea that received extreme backlash.

Yet again, it is important to have someone review your work before publishing it. You will want to think long-term about how your marketing campaign will make your company look. One “small” mistake can have a disastrous effect on your long-term business projects.

How to avoid failed marketing campaigns

 Unfortunately, these are just a few examples of the many marketing campaign mistakes that happen on a constant basis. We have some tips for you so that your business doesn’t end up like the ones described above.

Do research before beginning the campaign

This step is imperative for the success of your current and future campaigns. Market research, including focus groups, surveys, and more, can give you insights into how consumers feel about your products and services. Conducting this type of research should be the guiding force into your marketing campaign decision making process. If you do not have the funds to do this research, Google searches can also do a good job.

Get multiple opinions on your work

As we saw in the examples above, not having a coworker or higher-up check your work can cause huge problems. A common thing with many content creators is that they cannot see the flaws in their own work, they think it is perfect. By having someone double check for them, the chances for a disastrous marketing campaign go down very much. It is more than likely that there have been many terrible marketing ideas left on the cutting room floor thanks to a little double-checking.  

Think long-term

It is a fact that companies that think in the short-term have a much harder time making it through. By thinking long-term, you will be able to realize what effects your marketing campaign can have on your company. Don’t just tweet or post something because you feel like it, consider how it will really impact you.

Let us help you

Now that you know how marketing campaigns can go sour, take these tips into consideration, and let us help you! Please contact us for more information about our services including local SEO, content creation, pay-per-click, and social media. We will happily create amazingly effective marketing campaigns for you to help you grow.  

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