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Man, there is so much bad marketing advice rolling around that trying to keep up can give you a headache.

I’m not even going to try and fight all the marketing BS that gets tweeted and passed around as gospel truth, but I am going to share with you 7 marketing rules that you should never break in hopes that you can make some good marketing decisions on your own.

1. Don’t Discount:

I somehow became known as the don’t discount guy over the last few years. And, I like it.

Discounting is almost every salesperson’s favorite idea and one of the worst marketing decisions you can ever make.


When you discount, you devalue your brand. You open the door to folks waiting for a better deal. And, you kill your profits because for every 1% you discount, you lose 40% of your profits!

2. Segment Based On Behavior:

Kill the Gen Z crap which is just piggybacking off of Millennials, who got on board when we moved past Gen X, who picked up the torch from the Baby Boomers.

Your marketing segmentation should be built on behavior, not some arbitrary ideal, buzzword, or other forms of BS.

Actions speak louder than words and that’s how you should focus your segmentation models.

3. There Is No Such Thing As A Commodity:

Stupid marketers talk about commodities.

No matter what the product or service, if you do the work well, you can move folks up the benefit ladder and differentiate what you are selling in some way.

If you are lazy or bad at marketing, you are disputing this right now. I don’t make the rules!

4. Brand Purpose Costs Money:

If you aren’t willing to spend money or cost yourself money, it isn’t brand purpose.

It is really just PR BS without a real financial commitment behind it.

5. Strategy Before Tactics:

You never put the cart before the horse to use a different metaphor.

You have to do the work of strategy before you can move onto tactics.

Research, segmentation, targeting, and positioning are the keys to strategy. Do those first.

6. The 4 Ps Are Still Alive:

Every day someone knucklehead wants to talk about how the 4 Ps are dead.

Again, turn and run from these numpties.

The 4 Ps are still around and they aren’t some formula. They are a framework to help you make sure you are considering the right decisions for your marketing mix.

Product: what are you selling?

Price: how much does it cost?

Place: where are you selling it?

Promotion: how are people going to find out about it?

They are still around because you need to make these decisions to have a chance of effectively marketing and selling your services and products.

7. Positioning Is Strategy:

You have a choice to make in your positioning. Your position about your business or against your competition.

You have to make the choice, that’s the key to a successful strategy. Being against something or for something.

Don’t try to be everything to everyone, that never really works.

These aren’t the only marketing rules you need to know, but they are a starting point that I share with a lot of my clients.

What are some of the rules you live by or question…let me know on Twitter or LinkedIn and maybe I can work them into a follow-up post.