October 13, 2007

Why Do Marketers Lie?

My Father recently asked me, "Why do marketers lie?"

Good question.

I purchased ink-jet cartridges today. On the wrapper was this proclamation ... "#1 in reliability, Based on independent testing*"

Any time you see the dreaded '*', you know something is up.

Here's what it said, in very small print, on the side of the package (I changed the name of the company who produced the inkjet cartridge to 'company x').

"Based on average results of brands tested in the 2005 Inkjet Cartridge Reliability Study by QualityLogic, Inc. and commissioned by company x. Testing performed on Cartridge Model #1, Model #2, Model #3, and Model #4. Individual results may vary".

I purchased 'Model #5' and 'Model #6'.

So, the package tells me that the product I was purchasing was ranked #1 in reliability, based on independent testing.

The truth is that my product wasn't tested. Furthermore, the company I purchased the product from paid an independent company to do the test.

Which brings me back to my original question. Why do marketers lie?