Man Stressed
Digital Marketing | Inbound Marketing

3 EPIC Marketing Fails

It’s happened to all of us: we have this absolutely, positively, no doubt about it AWESOME marketing idea. Everyone loves it. It will put your company on the map. We’ll be the Nike or the Apple or the Hilton of our business vertical. Money will flow in like never before. Bonuses for everyone!

But. It. Fails…

So big does it fail,  in fact, that it soon becomes legend where we work. It is, in other words, an EPIC fail.

But we’re not alone. Not by a long, long shot. So many marketers have experienced an epic fail – or two – that it’s almost becoming a rite of passage. A “you’re not a real marketer until the boss calls you in with a large graphic of revenue with big red arrows heading into negative territory and you just know you’re getting a pink slip” kind of epic-marketing-fail rite of passage.

So just for fun and in solidarity with all of our marketing brethren, here are three epic marketing fails. Learn about them with a sympathetic heart. (But we we’ll understand if you take more than a little comfort in the fact that your name’s not on any of them!)

The “Twin Tower Sale” promotion.

One must remember that President George Bush did, in fact, exhort U.S. citizens in the days right after the terrorist attacks of 9/11 to “Get down to Disney World in Florida. Take your families and enjoy life.”  To, basically, get out there and be consumers!

Well, one Texas mattress company took his urging too far and used the tragedy as an excuse to hold a huge mattress sale. Called “Twin Tower Sale,” the advertisement featured a woman telling viewers they could buy any size mattress at the same price as a twin mattress, all the better to remember 9/11. (Watch to the end for some real clueless hijinks.)

Condemnation was swift and the owner did close his store for a bit and apologize for the “tasteless” commercial.

Even Amazon fails epically: Nazi-themed subway car seats, anyone?

Amazon wanted to promote its new alternate history series, The Man in the High Castle in 2015, a series that depicted what life in America might have been like had Germany and Japan won World War II. So, to promote the series, it paid the Metropolitan Transit Authority in New York City to wrap a few subway car seats in designs that merged the Nazi imperial symbol as well as Imperial Japan’s Rising Sun with the American flag.

The American Anti-Defamation League argued that while the wraps were appropriate within the world of the Amazon series, they lost all context on the subway. The MTA soon enough removed the wraps.

So take comfort in the fact that even Amazon’s marketing folks can blow it big time!

Ayds Diet Candy.

We don’t really need to say more except that this appetite suppressant started marketing itself at about the same time the AIDS epidemic was starting to scare the bejesus out of everyone. Around the world. Enough said.

Speaking of enough, enough with the fails. Here’s an example of a terrific campaign by Heineken, “Open Your World,” in which the adult beverage behemoth asks two strangers to work together with another person of extremely opposing viewpoints on an important modern topic.

Let us help ensure that the number of your company’s epic digital marketing fails remain at the bare minimum: hire Ingenex Digital Marketing to work with you to create epically successful digital marketing campaigns. Contact us today to learn more!

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