13 Haunting Marketing Myths for Halloween

Get in the Halloween spirit with these spooky tales of marketing mayhem.[/caption] October is one of our favorite months at Mad 4 Marketing because we get to buy extra candy for the office and dress our mascot, Star, in cute costumes. (The only trick is that we have to eat all of the Halloween treats fast enough to make way for November’s Thanksgiving decorations–it’s a tough task, but what can we say, we are just very devoted to our office decor!) Of course, we also enjoy the spooky and scary side of October. Here are 13 of the most haunting urban legends that we’ve heard in our marketing careers:

  1. 1. Once upon a time, there was a massive cross-branding opportunity that relied on one luncheon to seal the deal. All went well, everyone shook hands and parted ways. And then both companies waited for the other to reach out, and neither was ever heard from again. Not only did they fail to make an action plan for next steps, because they were afraid to presume, but they also forgot to send thank-yous for the meeting, because no-one was sure who should be thanking whom. A double massacre, the deal was DOA.
2. There was also the time a commercial for online dating services when you’re “desperately seeking your soulmate” ran during a movie marathon dedicated to being single and self-empowered. The feedback from that gaffe was surely a nightmare. 3. Did you hear about the company that spent $15,000 creating a brilliant new logo — only to learn it was nearly identical to a logo being used by a similarly named company that they already sometimes got mistaken phone calls about? There was no happy ending. 4. We’ve all seen websites running images with watermarks–but what about accidentally sending those stock files to print? Or worse, when you send the web-resolution out instead of the hi-res copy of your image. The result is a trauma that cannot be unseen. 5. What about the PR temp who tweeted her celeb client’s personal contact info, instead of performance venue info? She was never heard from again … in that industry, at least. 6. Not all that long ago, there was an industrious developer who tried to “revolutionize” the internet by creating a website for his client that had zero words, just pictures. 7. What about the printer who successfully completed a rush job overnight, but must have missed an email, since his banner said, “Need by tomorrow AM – Sent From iPhone”? 8. There was an exec who was so scared to share the limelight that when he got sick, he still insisted on showing up to a big presentation himself. He was so ill that no-one would shake his hand or accept handouts. Regardless, most of their team fell sick. Suffice it to say, they were not impressed by the company that would send him as its ambassador. 9. In the Great Copy/Paste Accident of 1998, an intern once printed out the same mailing label 300 times instead of 300 different labels. Every single piece of print material got mailed … to the same house. 10. At a small business’s first time at a major industry conference, they were pleased to look back and discover they’d passed out over 1,000 pieces of the collateral. It was only upon returning home that they realized none of the material had their contact information on it. 11. A tiny mix-up in dates can cause mass havoc on a project: For example, try swapping the public announcement date of an event with the on-sale date. Now add in a mix-up where you think you have until the event date itself to get the announcement done. 12. There was the drama that billed its lead character as a “saucy boss” when it might have been better to use “sassy” once they cast the girl from the spicy taco commercials. No-one was able to take the lead, much less the show, very seriously, and it tanked. 13. And did you ever see the blog post that skipped all proofreading stages, where the running text got cut off at the end of the   Read more of our Marketing Horror Stories for Halloween.  ]]>

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