The Ultimate List of Marketing Pet Peeves

Blog Categories:  Internet Marketing  

Brad Shorr and I teamed up to make this list of marketing practices that should be banned. What can you add to our list? C'mon -- let's vent!

Category 1: GRR

  1. Just because you understand Social Media, doesn’t mean you’re a Social Media Marketing expert. Understand?
  2. Quantity doesn’t equal quality. Having a high number of followers or Likes means nothing if they aren’t interested in you.
  3. Sharing email addresses. If we subscribe to your newsletter, we want to receive YOUR newsletter, not an affiliate who pays you for your list. We get enough emails as it is.
  4. #Overuse of #hashtags on #Twitter makes #us #crazy.
  5. Blog post titles that promise enlightenment and deliver platitudes.
  6. The word curation.
  7. Pop-up ads.
  8. Think before you type. Twitter is not a place to spew verbal diarrhea. Your followers appreciate a well thought out response or tweet, even if it takes you an extra minute.

Category 2: GRR+

  1. Shiny object syndrome: Marketers who fall in love with "the new thing" and completely abandon what's been working or is just at the cusp of mainstream acceptance. (From Jason Pinto.)
  2. Websites that speak. If we want to hear your video, we'll play it. We multi-task and will be annoyed and startled if your site starts talking amongst our 25 tabs and 6 windows.
  3. Crazy quilt, migraine-inducing Twitter backgrounds.
  4. Don’t post on Facebook as if it’s Twitter. The great thing about different social mediums is they have different implied rules. We will un-like you if you treat Facebook like it’s Twitter and post every hour.
  5. Websites without phone numbers. Good news: We want to buy $100,000 worth of your stuff. Bad news: We're too lazy to fill out your 10-field contact form, so we'll just order from your competitor with the 800 number.
  6. QR codes on TV commercials. Quick, jump off your couch, grab your phone, and scan your TV, all within 10 seconds ... you gotta be kidding us. (From Mike Malone.)
  7. Pop-up ads.
  8. Confusing brand management, PR, marketing and advertising. They are all different. (From Ryan McAbee.)

  9. DON’T POST IN ALL CAPS. You can’t seriously be that angry, or that stupid.
  10. On Twitter, use an old style retweet (RT @username:). It’s respectful and allows you to actually tell us why you deemed this worth sharing.

Category 3: GRR++

  1. When we give you a proposal for a website, don’t come back and say your neighbor knows WordPress and can throw something together cheaper. If you want a professional website, hire a professional. If not, then don’t ask for a proposal. They take time.
  2. Inforgraphics that make concepts harder, not easier, to grasp.
  3. Automated direct messages on Twitter. We don't want to hear your canned sales pitch. We didn't connect with you to make a million dollars by Thursday selling real estate.
  4. Show or tell us who you are instead of your brand. (From Ryan McAbee.)
  5. Pop-up ads.
  6. If we don’t know you on LinkedIn, don’t connect with us by saying you are our “friend.” If you really want to connect that bad, make some sort of effort such as joining a group that we are apart of or finding a mutual connection for an introduction.
  7. Execs who put the kibosh on a meticulously crafted website design because their spouse didn't like it ... a depressingly dense combination of nepotism and despotism.
  8. People who use social networks solely as a press release distribution service. Yes, SM can help you spread the word like never before, but if that's all you do the impact will decrease over time. Engage in conversations, share content from others, and simply post a variety of content from your own pages ... in addition to all those article links. (From Jason Pinto.)
  9. Intentionally confusing email unsubscribe forms.
  10. Spelling and grammatical errors: We get it, everyone makes mistakes, but if they are throughout your website, blog post or tweets it's sloppy and we assume you just don’t care.

Category 4: #@!&^!!

  1. It’s not a “Twitt,” it’s a Tweet.
  2. Auto-posting from Facebook to Twitter.
  3. Pop-up ads.
  4. If your site doesn’t work in Safari or Chrome, fix it. A good web developer designs for all browsers. And why the #@!&^!! are you using Internet Explorer, anyway?
  5. Internet Explorer.
  6. Political telemarketing. If Alexander Graham Bell were alive today, he'd roll over in his grave.
  7. Email marketing without permission. There's a special circle in Hell waiting for you.
  8. Pet peeve posts. You have enough headaches without being subjected to ours.


We welcome your peeve-worthy additions! What drives you up the wall?

WAIT! There's more ...

Postscript Pet Peeve: Not giving credit for images.

(Image credits: Angry man screaming in extreme rage -- © dundanim #9379976; Furious woman -- © olly #32201374; all

This post was inspired by George Costanza.

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