We love marketing. But even as professionals in the industry, we sometimes get a bit irked and irritated by some of what we see. Here are some of our marketing pet peeves. Do you have the same peeves or do you have your own?


The emoji is celebrating its 21st birthday year in 2020. Not everyone is celebrating. The go-to quick expression via digital communications can split the crowd, particularly between generations. In creative  and leisure industries, its usage is familiar and can be appropriate. But the whole team at Fruit has a definite sad face when we see brands’ inappropriate use of emojis, especially from professional services organisations.  Does anyone really want to work with an accountant, doctor or lawyer posting with a sunglasses-wearing emoji? Not cool.


A spelling mistake or grammatical error can really leap out from the page when it is on a business or brand’s platform. It is because we do not expect it. There it is, nestled in a slick-looking website with beautiful graphics is a mislaid apostrophe or a “they’re” that should be a “their”. Petty? Perhaps. But a website is the shop front to a business and a misspelling or shoddy grammar leaves you wondering about their attention to detail and question their professionalism.


In 2020? Really? Yes, the big cheques are still being rolled out for photo calls locally and nationally. Most often for good causes, true enough. But is the cheque still relevant in 2020? Can’t we be a bit more creative that gathering smartly dressed middle aged men around an oversized rectangle of cardboard by now? Please.


One that will resonate with most. But the fact that it is still around means it works. Depending on your source, it is anywhere from 1% to 3% success rate. But at what price to brand likability?


The effectiveness of digital marketing is all in its targeting. Few admit that they like being advertised to. But social media is built on serving relevant content and that includes advertising based on who you are and your online consumer habits. It is relevant and therefore not unwelcome. Or at least until it is not relevant. A blanket marketing campaign that reaches you on Facebook or other platforms that is not relevant, akin to the above the line marketing on television and radio is an irritant. It is a waste of your time and wasted budget on behalf of the advertiser.


We have become increasingly annoyed by seeing postings on social media platforms sent via scheduling tools or sent direct from another platform. Each social media site has its own personality and content should be appropriately tailored. A scattergun approach can look careless and even lazy.

* only joking

11th November 2020 - Chris Broadbent