The marketing equivalent of buying your wife a vacuum cleaner for Valentine’s Day

Sometimes I am on the receiving end of marketing that is so off-target that it would be laughable if it wasn’t so annoying. Anything that steals my attention with foolishness is annoying. Hear that Bieber?

So, you know, messaging that focuses on the need to feed my family a healthy meal (no family here) or reduce the stress of my commute (approximately twenty steps, bed to office these days) really gets my goat. It’s not just that I feel misunderstood. I’d like to tell you that I’m frequently misunderstood but I’m not sure I feel comfortable taking credit for being that fascinatingly original. It’s that it’s just sloppy, spray and pray marketing. It makes companies look lazy and out-of-touch.

Recently, I wrote a guest post over on the Claxon Marketing blog, that shares my process for developing audience personas on the cheap and easy. These personas help companies (of any size) get to know the people to whom they are marketing and minimize the possibility of messaging asshattery.

It turns out that creating imaginary friends (albeit ones based on actual data) can come in handy for people other than Manti Te’o.