Marketers must stop doing what people hate.

stop doing what people hate

If you’re a fan of my book Marketing Rebellion: The Most Human Company Wins, you’ll know that I advocate a movement toward a human-centered approach to marketing. And the first step in that process is to STOP DOING WHAT PEOPLE HATE.

Sounds, simple, right?

It’s not.

Marketers are under constant pressure to do things that we know our customers hate because:

  • the tactic works
  • our competitors do it
  • we’re afraid not to
  • we’ve always done it that way

Here is one of my pet peeves. Pop-up ads.

Google posted this stat yesterday:

stop doing what people hate

Every research report concludes that consumers LOATHE pop-up ads. And while pop-ups might slightly increase sign-up rates for a newsletter, at this point, there’s no rational marketing professional who can believe that people like these maddening interruptions.

But if you ask a marketer why they do it, they say “because they work.”

But people hate them.

But they work.

And so it goes.

In 2014, Ethan Zuckerman, the inventor of the pop-up ad, wrote a lengthy apology for his creation in The Atlantic. He called it “The Internet’s Original Sin” and pleaded with businesses to “ditch them.”

Here’s the deal:

You have no choice.

The customer has the power. The customer is the marketer, not you.

You have to stop doing what people hate.

It’s just that simple, and just that hard.

The days of the marketing easy button are over.

Help me change marketing for the better. Download a free Human Marketing Manifesto here.

Keynote speaker Mark SchaeferMark Schaefer is the chief blogger for this site, executive director of Schaefer Marketing Solutions, and the author of several best-selling digital marketing books. He is an acclaimed keynote speaker, college educator, and business consultant.  The Marketing Companion podcast is among the top business podcasts in the world.  Contact Mark to have him speak to your company event or conference soon.

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