8 Marketing Myths Busted with Marketing Science

Marketing Science is evidence-based marketing advice and insights. Marketing Science draws its insights from what occurred in the real world – from previous results that provide insights on sales, market share, brand loyalty metrics and more. Adelaide’s very own Ehrenberg Bass Institute is the world’s largest centre for Marketing Science research and we have drawn upon their findings for this blog post.

It’s time to bust the myths associated with Marketing Science.

Why Marketing Science Matters for Business Owners & Marketing Managers

If your business or marketing department is like most, you will be keen to pursue the most effective marketing strategies that will equate to sales and brand growth. You are likely to be less enthusiastic about marketing ideas and plans that waste your time and money.

To work towards these aims, we have compiled a list of marketing myths that are debunked by Marketing Science. These insights will save you time and money if implemented and followed consistently over time:

  • “Unique Selling Propositions are a waste of time”

The Marketing Science view: This is due to the fact that customers actually perceive very little difference between brands & businesses.

Solution: Focus on making your brand memorable in the eyes of consumers by refreshing memory structures through advertising so that your business is easily recalled at purchase time.


  • “Target Marketing Can Cause You to Miss Your Target Audience”

The Marketing Science view: you can reach more of your target with mass media (television, radio, newspaper) than with ‘targeted’ media. For example, there may be 2,000 people who read “SA Anglers Magazine”, but you might be able to promote your tackle shop business to 10,000 people on radio who are interested in fishing.


  • “Are your customers deeply loyal to your brand, or are they just lazy”?

The Marketing Science view: customers are uncaring cognitive misers.


  • “Customer attitudes towards your brand do not drive sales …. It’s their behaviour that drives their attitude”.

The Marketing Science view: customers have busy lives and little cognitive space to develop deep, emotional connections to brands. They tend to behave first and form attitudes and perceptions of brands, later.

i.e. make a purchase, and then justify that purchase – post-purchase rationalisation or “I buy Franks pizza, therefore it is good”, rather than “Frank’s pizza is good, therefore I buy it”.


  • “Advertising does not need to be persuasive to make customers buy”

The Marketing Science view: advertising is about building and refreshing memory structures so that your brand is remembered at the time of purchase. Memory structures are built using ‘distinctive assets’ – a catchy jingle, brand colours, a memorable tag line, an artistic or creative style


  • “Don’t Waste Your Money on Getting Customers to Love Your Brand”

The Marketing Science view: The quantitative research numbers show that customers are less loyal than you may think. Even Apple & Harley Davidson customers have proven to be less loyal. To see the supporting research, please visit pages 107-110 of “How Brands Grow (Sharp 2010).


  • “Niche Brands Experience Lower Levels of Loyalty than Larger Brands”

The Marketing Science view: This is called the ‘Double Jeopardy Effect’ – small brands have less market share and less customer loyalty than large brands. Customers demonstrate ‘polygamous loyalty’ – they are loyal to several brands, including yours. Bigger brands have the advantage of having more outlets (‘physical availability’) and bigger marketing budgets (‘mental availability’) which leads to consumers choosing them more often than niche brands.


  • “If You Want to Grow Your Sales, Talk to Light Customers”

The Marketing Science view: Sales and brand growth come from getting non and light buyers to purchase your product rather than getting heavy buyers to buy more. E.g. Wayne buys 2 cartons of West End beer per week = 104 cartons per year.

If we nudge Wayne towards enthusiastic levels of alcohol consumption and get him to buy 3 cartons a week = 156 cartons per year.

Compared with:

1000 x customers who buy 2 cartons of beer per year = 2000 cartons of beer.

So, the sales and market share growth come from nudging light and non-buyers to buy, even in small quantities over the course of the year.


Marketing Science in Practice

If you would like to discover more about how Marketing Science insights could assist your business or marketing department in developing effective marketing strategies (which are more effective in terms of time and budget allocation) then contact me here kain@marketingcatalyst.com.au and we can arrange a meeting over coffee.