Friday, January 27, 2006

Biased Marketing? Surely Not ... or Just Maybe?

The Business Pundit (Rob May, Louisville) latched onto an intriguing piece of research and, as usual, the Pundit is asking the right question that makes the research relevant to all of us marketers. The research produced by LiveScience studied the decision making practices of politicians -- it turns out that they are routinely making decisions that ignore facts that don't support their party point of view.

Okay, so politicians are just humans and subject to stupidity like the rest of us mortals.

But it begs the question ... how often do you recommend a campaign or a product decision that flies in the face of facts that seem to tell you to go the other way? True confessions -- I've done it. Hopefully at this point in my career I have stopped doing it.

But I continue to witness brand marketers who -- in the face of contrary evidence --want to make a mark by producing a product or an ad campaign or one of a thousand other kinds of things that get done in the world of marketing.

Egos get tied up into the idea of the moment.

The risk of not succeeding prevents us from dumping a sunk cost.

We rationalize the facts away.

We support decisions that come our of our department and counter the decisions that come from other departments.

Maybe the existence of this LiveScience research will cause us to challenge projects before they go too far -- especially when there is some evidence to the contrary.


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