Tuesday, March 23, 2010
More on consultants.
Ad Age, an advertising trade journal everyone used to read before it focused almost exclusively on articles on Twitter and other non-revenue producing, nonsensical social media sites, had an article last week http://adage.com/article?article_id=142797 on Bud Light's first-ever full-year sales decline--they're calling it "The Drinkability Debacle."
It seems that the fine swill-merchants at Anheuser-Busch or In Bev or Wal*Beer or whomever owns the piss-producing conglomerate decided to hire a bunch of consultants so as to make marketing scientific and, therefore, immune to failure.
"Pretend you're doing something scientific and you can charge millions for it. Insecure marketers are suckers for pseudo science, the biggest scam in the marketing world. The lure is of course the seemingly logical conclusions one can draw from the numbers that can be distilled from the answers to a set of questions."
Here's the part I especially liked in the way it explains how marketing experts "proved" the efficacy of the drinkability positioning:
"For example, a question could be Do you agree or disagree that drinkability is an important factor in selecting a beverage?
"The answer has to be plotted on to a scale from 0-10. Where 0 is disagree completely.
"Now, who can disagree with drinkability being an important factor for choosing a beverage? As opposed to what?"
Right now I'm reading a book called "Valley of Death: The Tragedy at Dien Bien Phu that Led America into the Vietnam War" by Pulitzer Prize-winner Ted Morgan. He has a quotation about midway through the book by former French Foreign Minister Georges Bidault: "I don't know where we're going, but we will get there without detours."
That seems about right.
Posted by George Tannenbaum at 8:24 AM