1. Persuasion

Can Great Marketing Redeem A Bad Product?

I hear these ‘armchair marketer’ comments from time to time.

“The marketing on that product launch was SO good the product could have been anything at all and people would have still bought it…”


“That Mission Impossible movie could have had Tom Cruise playing with matches for 90 minutes and it still would have made $100M on opening day…”

Both sentiments understandable – and also very incorrect. Which brings us to this gem:

An Australian ad man brought in his whole sophisticated team to sell his crappy used car. 🙂

…Now, with all this flash, pomp and circumstance… you STILL wouldn’t buy the car, would you?

The point is, the product actually matters.

Granted, there are certain direct response modalities where you can use almost the same marketing interchangeably for several different products.

But still, if you don’t have a good product at the center of it all, you cannot even produce good marketing for it. Not really.

And even if you managed to sell a crappy product through an outrageously swinging campaign, the refunds and support nightmares and the overall disgruntlement will convince you never to sin again.

Always make sure you’re selling a STELLAR product, or don’t sell it at all. Fun and games aside, the exception proves the rule. 

PS. I lost it at ‘MATCHING SEATS’. 😀 What about you?

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Comments to: Can Great Marketing Redeem A Bad Product?
  • July 16, 2014

    but isn’t that guy telling a completely wrong story? It is not a crappy car, it is an old car. And obviously owned by someone who don’t deserve to own that pearl. I would NOT, for sure, buy/hire the driver, but I would be happy to save that nice car from the hands of him.

  • July 16, 2014

    Heh 🙂 that’s an interesting point Jouko. I think the truth is probably that it’s this guy’s advertising company that is the product, and the car is merely a sideshow or a prop. There are all kinds of reactions to this, and it’s what he wanted I’m sure. Half a million views in a couple days, and counting..

  • July 17, 2014

    Can’t agree more Juho!

    For me, it comes down to 3 things… in this order:

    1. FRICKEN AWESOME product.
    2. FRICKEN AWESOME customer experience.
    3. Backed up by solid marketing.*

    Once you have #1 and #2, the marketing is really just a kickstart… and then the thing should start driving itself through massive word of mouth and natural social proof.


    * Notice how there are no caps used for point #3 above 😉

  • July 17, 2014

    Right on, Gideon! The truth of the product will shine through, always. 🙂

  • July 18, 2014

    Ethically it is not right to sell a crappy product by the help of great marketing zoom. But the marketing and advertising world has changed a lot , they do anything possible to sell their products. The above mentioned is not totally crapped , I agree that it is old and not in good condition.

    Good Marketing campaigns are really effective to sell any kind of products and services. Buying and selling is a business where people only look for profit rather than ethics.

    Thank you for sharing

  • July 23, 2014

    Sagar: I wouldn’t go as far as generalizing that the whole selling or marketing is now profit at any means. It never works for long anyway.

  • July 26, 2014

    then the thing should start driving itself through massive word of mouth and natural social proof.

  • July 28, 2014

    Okay, but I think that still possible..
    What important is how to make the bad product become valuable..
    And also how to make costumer believe that the product is valuable..
    But, that’s gonna be hard.

  • July 30, 2014

    HAHAHAHA 🙂 This is a good topic. i think work on improving your product so that you get rave reviews from your customers, and then advertising your product or service will be a breeze

  • July 30, 2014

    Hi, I Believe that great marketing can even redeem the bad product…as it depends very less on the product how it is example: it is said that junk food is not healthy for health then why it is popular just because marketier are marketing it very well.

  • July 31, 2014

    Great article, video and topic. I have tried to sell lots of bad products from Clickbank. And had some success too, by convincing people how good this product actualy is.

    But it hurts ones karma, so do not do it and sell only really necessary and genuine products! 🙂

  • July 31, 2014

    Yes, i certainly think that is certainly possible. A good marketing is always needed for the success of any kind of product- be it a good product or a bad product. But on the other hand, I think a good marketer will never promote some bad product just for some quick money.

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