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Surely, like most Americans you fear public speaking. Sorry to disappoint, but this particular post won't offer any constructive advice on how to overcome nervousness, trembling hands, or itchy skin....


I have, however, taken the liberty of producing working titles and summaries for the top 10 worst marketing speeches that you can deliver to your direct report or CEO. Let's kick off the list with number 10.

10. Database, Schmetabase. This speech discusses marketing's love for compiling and de-duping customer lists and manually tracking marketing touches via spreadsheet instead of investing in marketing automation.

9. Three is a Bigger Number than One. Your company, like most, probably struggles with master data–too many lists of customers, suppliers, accounts which are inconsistent, incomplete and uncontrolled. This talk details how sending three of the same direct mail piece to a customer is surely better received than just sending one.

8. Customer Service is for Sissies. Customers should be happy they get any support, much less stellar customer support, right? This speech details top 10 ways to avoid full lifecycle support and the associated service costs. Your brand will thank you.

7. Hot off the Presses. The purpose of this speech is to reinforce the proper investment in heavy print advertising. Taking out full glossy advertisements in the CEO's favorite business publication is highly encouraged, since all marketers know creating general awareness makes the phone ring and drives sales.

6. The Right Hand Doesn't Care What the Left Hand is Doing. This speech highlights how a single view of the customer across company divisions is highly overrated. How better to improve customer satisfaction than by cross selling and up-selling products and services to customers that they already own or use? Plus, there is comedic value in watching customer service agents pitch irrelevant offers to your most valuable and profitable customers.

5. Hum This Tune; "Don't Know Much about Strategy". This speech details how a marketer's time is best spent divining the right marketing tactics (direct mail pieces, advertisements, tradeshows etc), instead of putting together a complete, integrated, multi-channel program aimed at a target audience that actually gets results. Disparate marketing investments that have no correlation to each other are much more sensible and memorable.

4. Yesterday's Gone, Yesterday's Gone. Taking a note from the Fleetwood Mac, this speech highlights the need to keep only the last ninety days of customer transactions and purchase history in the company data warehouse. It's really best to store historical data on CD or tape drive, preferably offsite so it's inaccessible. After all, data warehouse storage costs money, and it's unnecessary to understand context when building marketing campaigns or generating sales offers.

3. Life in a Bubble. One of the most popular speeches, this talk describes a very limited need for a robust and continuous competitive intelligence function because competitor moves, acquisitions, and sales strategies are irrelevant. The audience of this speech will come away understanding it is important to spend as little as possible on competitive intelligence and analysis, so there's more money available for national print advertising.

2. Upgrade the ERP but Hold Off on that "CRM Thing"– This speech details how precious IT dollars should be spent on the latest ERP upgrade with all the new bells and whistles, while the CRM software licenses sit on the shelf and collect dust. Sales, marketing and service never mattered much anyway.

1. We Work Better in Isolation. Forget about attempting to bridge the divide between sales and marketing. Sales people are the enemy. This speech describes how to isolate the marketing function from sales so that the best advertisements, collateral, and assets can be created independent of the needs of the sales force. Added bonus; this speech discusses the common fallacy that sales people are responsible for a marketers paycheck.

These are my top ten worst marketing speeches. Can you think of others I've missed?

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Paul Barsch directs services marketing programs for Teradata, the world's largest data warehousing and analytics company. Previously, Paul was marketing director for HP Enterprise Services $1.3 billion healthcare industry and a senior marketing manager at global consultancy, BearingPoint. Paul is a senior contributor to MarketingProfs, a frequent columnist for MarketingProfs DailyFix, and has published over fifteen articles in marketing, management, technology and healthcare publications. Paul earned his Bachelors of Science in Business Administration from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. He and his family reside in San Diego, CA.