Common Marketing Plan Errors

1-         The campaign is not feasible. Some examples may be a) the campaign would not attract people’s attention or people would not be interested in such a campaign b) even if the proposed campaign works for some people, it may have a very small impact on sales c) the proposed campaign may not be safe or may involve some privacy issues (having the pictures of customers on the brand’s Facebook page without customers’ permission)

2-         Recommendations are not based on any data or go against common knowledge (e.g. it is known that not everyone in Japan owns a smart phone, if the plan suggests to reach everyone in Japan by using an application, this does not make sense)

3-         Ideas are not original or attention grabbing

4-         Rationale behind each strategy is not explained or does not make sense

5-         Target definition is too broad (e.g. Target: families)

6-         Target size is too small or the target already has many alternatives to choose from

7-         Campaign message is too simple, can be used for any brand or any place (e.g. Our brand is high quality)

8-         Recommended strategies are above the campaign budget or very difficult to execute (e.g. The brand will sign on many celebrities and it will have a special TV program. The brand will have its logo reflected on the moon)

9-         Recommended strategies are likely to have a very small impact on awareness or sales (e.g. The brand will have a radio advertising campaign only).

10-        The Plan is too optimistic (e.g. many contestants just presume that people will participate in their social media campaigns or automatically start following the brand on Facebook or Twitter. However, in real life, average consumers don’t follow brands in social media or don’t participate in promotional campaigns unless there’s a strong incentive, word of mouth, or mass advertising)

11-        Proposed ideas are not connected. It is better to have a consistent message for promotions, campaign idea, brand slogan, contests and so on. (e.g. The target: college students, contest: college entry exam simulation game, message: the brand will help you get into college, campaign: Facebook college exam tips)

12-        Proposed ideas are difficult to implement because they take time or they are very risky

13-        Proposed ideas are difficult to implement because they conflict with the brand’s current image

14-        Proposed ideas are difficult to implement because they are confusing for customers (e.g. the customers cannot understand a promotional campaign that has 5 different steps that require people to do many things)

15-        Proposed ideas are difficult to implement because they may alienate the brand’s current customers (e.g. if Uniqlo targets older users by using the elderly in its commercials, it may lose its young customers.)

16-       The campaign lacks call for an action or need for urgency. People may like the ads and messages but perhaps would not buy the product.

17-       The plan does not explain why people should participate in the promotional campaign. Many people simply ignore a simple discount coupon unless it is delivered in a unique and effective way.

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