7 marketing quotes that make us go “HUH???” (in honour of Freddie Mercury)

September 5, 2011

By Olivia Shannon, @olivia_at_o

In honour of the late Freddie Mercury—the king and Queen of bizarre lyrics that, even more bizarrely, actually make sense—today we are blogging about a few of our favourite PR and marketing quotes that make us go “HUH???”

Here they are, in no particular order. If you have some you want to share (and please do!), you can email us at countdown@mwc.com or share them with us on Twitter (@321mwc).

1. “Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make, but about the stories you tell” – Seth Godin

Social media buffs love this suggestion, but the truth is that marketing was never really about the stuff you make, not even in the “dark ages” before the internet. Effective marketing has always been about storytelling. That’s our view, anyway!

2. “Social Media is about sociology and psychology more than technology” Brian Solis

It’s true that technology needs to understand psychology and sociology in order to create a better social media experience. It’s also true that serious users of social media should be familiar with the psychology of social media—which, by the way, is no small task, given that social media and its users change nearly every day. But for most of the people we know, social media is less about psychology and more about Twitter, WordPress, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitterfeed, iPhones, BlackBerrys, FourSquare, HootSuite, Google+, Klout, Tweetdeck, Farmville, and countless other delightful technological inventions that make the whole thing possible. Admittedly, this one is more of a “HMM…” than a “HUH???”

3.  “Social Media puts the ‘public’ into PR and the ‘market’ into marketing” – Chris Brogan

It “sounds good,” but surely Chris is not saying that before there was social media, public relations didn’t involve the public, and marketing didn’t involve markets? REALLY now…

4. “Focus on how to be social, not on how to do social” – Jay Baer

What is the difference between “being” and “doing” social? For that matter, why is “being” social preferable to “doing” social? If you ARE social, doesn’t that involve doing? If you are DOING social, aren’t you also…being social???? Freddie Mercury! Help us please!!

5. “Marketing is what you do when your product is no good” – Edwin Land

HUH??? We all know hundreds of amazing companies with fascinating products that need or needed to be communicated to the world. Maybe Edwin is right in certain cases, but this is definitely not a universal truth.  Again: HUH???

6. “Public Relations used to be exclusively about the media” – David Meerman Scott

We won’t say anything about this quote’s “HUH???” factor; you can read SocialRealist’s unrestrained comments here http://socialrealist.com/digital-pr/stupid-pr-quote-of-the-week-may-4-2008/

7. “Sometimes they write what I say and not what I mean” – David Guerro

This seems like utter nonsense—but on second thought, it kind of makes sense. People don’t always say exactly what they mean. If you’re interviewing someone, shouldn’t you make sure you understand their meaning before you quote them?


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