The biggest lies that digital marketers tell themselves

If the greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he did not exist, then the greatest trick that the sellers of certain marketing software have pulled for the last decade was convincing marketers that advertising is dead.

For years, so-called experts proclaimed the death of advertising and so-called ‘outbound marketing’. In 2004, Jim Nail of Forrester Research said we’re seeing “the end of the era of mass marketing”. In 2009, Bob Garfield of Ad Age wrote that “the post-advertising age is underway”.

For years, we all saw countless articles and pundits saying that advertising is dead or proclaiming that it soon will be. And you know what they were? Completely and utterly wrong.

Yes, print advertising has declined and a few other forms have remained level. But TV advertising has increased — more on that later — and digital advertising has skyrocketed. When you look at total ad spend across all channels, you see that advertising is very much alive. But tell me again that advertising is dead.

By now, in 2017, I hope that everyone here already knows that advertising is far from dead. It’s not even mostly dead. So, why am I introducing this talk with this lie? Because we are hearing similar bullshit today — but on other topics.

[Click to read the rest in my new column at The Drum!]


A former journalist and newspaper editor turned marketing and communications executive, Samuel Scott is Marcom Director at AI-powered log analytics software platform Logz.io, a global marketing speaker, and writer of the regular “The Promotion Fix” column in The Drum. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.