Season 3, Episode 6
When is marketing too much?

Jul 10, 2023

Join Lina and Sarah on this episode of Marketing Matters, as they discuss marketing in excess and how to avoid marketing fatigue in your own strategy. They discuss different types of marketing that can be “too much,” such as non-targeted and reactionary marketing and why they don’t work. Plus, they share personal experiences with overwhelming and inefficient marketing. Tune in to gain insights on ensuring that your marketing is hitting targets and not “too much.”

Where is the line between marketing and spam? How do you know when marketing is “too much?”

Join Lina and Sarah on this episode of Marketing Matters, as they discuss marketing in excess and how to avoid marketing fatigue in your own strategy. They discuss different types of marketing that can be “too much,” such as non-targeted and reactionary marketing and why they don’t work. Plus, they share personal experiences with overwhelming and inefficient marketing. Tune in to gain insights on ensuring that your marketing is hitting targets and not “too much.”


  • When is marketing “too much?”
  • What does it mean to be fatigued by a brand’s marketing?
  • What does excessive, non-targeted, and reactionary marketing look like?
  • What is the difference between responsive and reactionary marketing?
  • How often should you be posting content on social media?

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We’ll see you in a month for the first episode of our next season! Marketing Matters is brought to you by ADV Marketing

Lina Adams: Hi there. We’re ADV marketing: a marketing agency that develops high quality and cost-effective marketing materials. Our relationship driven business model and customized marketing solutions makes us the perfect partner for small businesses looking to grow. I’m your host, Lina Rice. Join Sarah and me here on Marketing Matters every other Monday to discuss business to business marketing topics. Now let’s get into the episode.
Hello, everyone, and welcome back to another episode of Marketing Matters, where we talk all things marketing related and how it relates to your business. Sarah I’m so excited about this episode.
Sarah Roberts: This is a good episode.
Lina Adams: So this is basically the what not to do episode.
Sarah Roberts: Yes, it’s everything I wish people knew about marketing.
Lina Adams: Yeah. So basically we’re going to be answering the question, “When is marketing too much”?
Because marketing can be annoying. We’re going to break down why it can be annoying. And that way your marketing is not annoying.
Sarah Roberts: Cause that is the goal. I feel like-
Lina Adams: Totally.
Sarah Roberts: We need to tell everyone that-
Lina Adams: We don’t want your marketing to be annoying.
Sarah Roberts: It should not be annoying. People should not look at the stuff you’re putting out and be like, Oh my gosh, another thing from Company X. Like no, that is not what we want.
Lina Adams: No. So, okay, so Sarah, I’m going to start off by asking you a fun little question. So have you ever been fatigued by brand marketing? And by that I basically just mean for listeners out there that have you ever been on social media or just TV ads, anything and you’re like, not this company again.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah. It happens frequently. And I think everyone can relate to that feeling, which is why marketing can get a bad rap is because we remember the negative experiences and not necessarily when it’s working because you don’t notice when it’s working. You just know you love like, I love Trader Joe’s, so I’m never fatigued by Trader Joe’s.
Lina Adams: H-E-B. They have great ads. They’re so funny.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah, see, those brands I’m not fatigued by, but I have been fatigued and usually, so I get fatigued because I’m in marketing. I get really frustrated when people do marketing wrong, quote-on-quote wrong. It’s when it’s too salesy and I feel like I’m being sold. Look, y’all. Hot take from a marketing professional.
I do not like, like the cold sale process, like going up to people who don’t need your product and trying to convince them they need it. Like that is from the get-go bad. Like, yeah, like you should not be chasing people who don’t want your stuff.
Lina Adams: Right.
Sarah Roberts: Demand generation has a place, but it is not starting cold when a client who already knows they don’t want to talk to you.
That not a good situation.
Lina Adams: Yeah.
Sarah Roberts: And when marketing comes across that way in that they’re in your face and you don’t want them to be in your face, that’s a huge red flag for me.
Lina Adams: It’s so true. So, I usually get fatigued with brands’ marketing around election season because what’ll happen is all of a sudden out of the blue, these brands who have never, ever dabbled in politics, start talking about their opinions.
And I’m like, number one, I don’t think brands should have political opinions unless it directly affects them. So, like you see energy companies talk about, you know, laws that were passed that affect them. That makes sense to me.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah.
Lina Adams: But when they start talking about like random laws that have nothing to do with their company, I’m like-
Sarah Roberts: I know.
Lina Adams: Please stop. I don’t care.
So I just get very fatigued very fast and I will unfollow everyone and anyone who does that because it just drives me crazy to my core.
Sarah Roberts: I feel like it’s an unspoken truth that people generally don’t like divisive politics, and so-
Lina Adams: No! Why did you have to go and do that? Like, and I don’t care whether or not I agree with them.
I’m like, please, just stop, I don’t want to talk about this.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah, neutrality has its own value, but what really what those two examples, mine and yours, boils down to are brands that are out of touch.
Lina Adams: Yes.
Sarah Roberts: That don’t understand their consumer. Like that is when the fatigue and annoyance happens.
Lina Adams: Yeah.
Sarah Roberts: And that honestly in my definition is bad marketing.
So for everyone who thinks marketing is just by default annoying, it’s not true.
Lina Adams: You’ve seen real bad examples.
Sarah Roberts: You’ve been lied to.
Lina Adams: And we can easily talk about that with what just happened with Budweiser and Target.
Sarah Roberts: Mm hmm. Yeah. See, they had a strategy that didn’t necessarily match their brand audience, and in retrospect, that was 2020. But I don’t know necessarily what their thinking was going into their marketing.
But yeah, bringing politics is always risky, especially because we are in the most divisive political- ever.
Lina Adams: And everybody has an opinion, so you’re not going to win.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah.
Lina Adams: Because everyone’s opinion is different.
Sarah Roberts: And depending on your brands, you got to like risk alienation, which you never want to do. Risk annoyance, yeah. Don’t annoy people with your marketing.
Lina Adams: That’s that’s like the key takeaway today.Please just don’t annoy people.
Sarah Roberts: But let’s talk about what makes marketing annoying.
Lina Adams: Okay, so the first thing that I thought of is just excessive marketing. If you are posting 15 times a day causing your like followers to only see your brand when they go on social media, it’s too much.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah. And also certain platforms will penalize you for doing that.
Lina Adams: They will.
Sarah Roberts: They don’t want spammy content on their platforms either.
Lina Adams: No.
Sarah Roberts: So don’t be spammy.
Lina Adams: Exactly. So please, just don’t do that.
Sarah Roberts: So that’s my key takeaway.
Lina Adams: Or, if you like, you post, you email them, you call them, you run an ad. It’s just too much.
Sarah Roberts: That’s so true. I recently, like, I was just looking into a platform on behalf of a client just to get a better understanding of what they offered and their pricing.
And I put in my one email. They not only emailed me, but they also called me multiple times a day.
Lina Adams: That happened to me one time. I don’t remember what it was, but I put my email in for a platform and it also required me to put my company, which I mean, they could have figured out from my email.
So then they called Kara and I was just like, what? Which means they must have gone to our website and like pulled her phone number, but I’m just like, Why? Please don’t.
Sarah Roberts: It doesn’t make you look good, because I hadn’t at that point displayed enough interest in their stuff to get two phone calls a day. Yeah, especially ones that like, hounded and me like, would follow up and be like, Why aren’t you answering?
I’m like, stop, I’m in marketing. I don’t like it. I don’t want to work with you.
Lina Adams: There’s a certain nonprofit, and this is a very specific scenario because nonprofits have a whole different marketing thing going on there. But there’s this specific nonprofit that would call me multiple times a week at the most random hours of the day. One day they call me at 9 p.m..
I was at dinner. I was not pleased about it. I finally blocked them, but I was just like, stop, like I’m not giving you my money, so please stop. This is not making me want to give you my money.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah, that’s excessive.
Lina Adams: It is.
Sarah Roberts: Not so good. No.
Lina Adams: So don’t do that. But also, another form of excessive marketing is just not refreshing your content.
So literally all people are seeing is the exact same thing over and over.
Sarah Roberts: Yes.
Lina Adams: That’s excessive. In a very bad way.
Sarah Roberts: Mm hmm.
Lina Adams: Another thing is marketing on irrelevant platforms or mediums. So you’re reaching an audience that just- isn’t interested.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah, it’s a waste coverage issue.
Lina Adams: Yeah, but like Sarah said, we will give you a little pro tip: Do not post more than once a day on LinkedIn.
They will penalize you.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah, it cannibalizes your posts. So-
Lina Adams: It does.
Sarah Roberts: In certain situations, like you might have to post the second time for a more important post. Fine, you can do that, but make sure your second post is more important than the first because your first post will not- will stop getting views and it’ll stop getting likes and comments.
So you just have to plan in advance to make sure that you’re posting what you need to post on certain days.
Lina Adams: Yeah. Okay. So the second thing that I thought of was non-targeted marketing, which we kind of talked about on the last one, but we’ve all gotten an ad that had zero things to do with us.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah.
Lina Adams: It’s more common on like TVs or things like that.
But I’ve gotten it on social media too. And like, how does that make you feel? You get annoyed, you don’t like it, it is a bad feeling. While everybody hates targeting, right? Like they’re all everybody’s like, Oh, targeting so bad. It’s stalky, it’s creepy, It’s blah, blah, blah.
Sarah Roberts: Mm hmm.
Lina Adams: There’s a reason we do it. It’s because overall, and there are studies about this, so I’m not going to spit out precise metrics because I will say it wrong.
But studies have shown that targeted content actually makes people happier and better than non-targeted content.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah, because they’re not getting interrupted with annoying stuff.
Lina Adams: Because they just feel like it’s part of their content that they’re already looking at.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah, like think of when- this is like old school because people don’t really do it anymore because they get penalized so bad for it.
But like when you went to a travel agency site and then all the pop ups and the front and back end of the website- like nothing to do with travel. Yeah, like super annoying and makes your computer run slow.
Lina Adams: We’ve all been on websites like that.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah!
Lina Adams: Where there’s like 18 million pop ups and you’re just like, stop.
Sarah Roberts: Oh, my gosh. Speaking of targeting, I was listening to a podcast and then a advertisement came on that was like as a B2B marketer, you and I was like, wow! Oh my gosh, that was so targeted!
Lina Adams: Was it a B2B podcast?
Sarah Roberts: No, it was just like a news podcast. It was weird.
Lina Adams: Interesting.
Sarah Roberts: It was weird. I think it was honestly the Wall Street Journal. I was like, wow, dang, the personalization level was insane.
Lina Adams: Yeah, which I do know that that’s something that was rolled out within the past few years where they can target.
So, in the past, originally, you recorded your ads into your podcast, but now some platforms will allow you to do targeted ads that will just auto populate into the podcast based off a listener.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah, and with streaming platforms now like Netflix or even Spotify and podcasts and stuff. You have a username, birthday, a gender, all this stuff.
Lina Adams: Like they know who you are.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah. You have more information than like when you bought a TV and set it up.
Lina Adams: Yeah.
Sarah Roberts: And bought cable.
Lina Adams: So interesting.
Sarah Roberts: It is fascinating.
Lina Adams: Okay, so reality is: targeting is better. Please target your audience accordingly.
Sarah Roberts: Customize it and personalize it.
Lina Adams: Yes. So important.
Sarah Roberts: So true.
Lina Adams: Okay. So, one of the big things that is like the big no no, like, please no, just no, that we have to, like reign in clients every now and again.
I’m like, nope, nope, is reactionary marketing. So, Sarah, why don’t you define reactionary marketing for us real quick?
Sarah Roberts: So reactionary marketing is- I’m not going to say responding… Reacting to the market in a way that does not meet your business objectives, but only meets or follows others, which is bad for long term sustainability.
Lina Adams: Think if you had a client who only ever came to you with fires, that’s not sustainable.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah.
Lina Adams: And you’re not going to be able to do real good work for them because you’re not able to do your job. You’re just constantly putting out their fires.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah.
Lina Adams: Similar concept.
Sarah Roberts: And they’re never going to get ahead of the fires, right. Like and the whole point is that you’re ahead of it and you’re proactively managing it. So in the long term you have efficiency and cost savings and all the good things.
Lina Adams: Yeah.
Sarah Roberts: But if you’re constantly behind the fires, then you’re not preventing it. Like in the wildfire stuff where they like, do the little dirt digging stuff to prevent the fire from crossing over instead of just following the fire.
Lina Adams: Only you can prevent wildfires.
Sarah Roberts: Yes, exactly. Prevent, not put out.
Lina Adams: Yeah.
Sarah Roberts: So like you like in order to fight the big fires, you have to think where it will be.
Lina Adams: Yeah.
Sarah Roberts: Instead of where it was. Oh, my gosh. It’s Art of war.
Lina Adams: Yeah.
Sarah Roberts: Oh, my goodness. Look at me like you’re the one with an MBA. But I’m the one quoting Art of War. How fun.
Lina Adams: Okay, so here’s some examples of reactionary marketing that are like a big no no, which is only posting trendy content. So I did research to confirm because I was pretty sure that I knew the answer to this.
But here’s the thing. If you see and identify a trend, you’re too late.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah.
Lina Adams: You’re too late because trends lifespan currently is 48 hours.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah.
Lina Adams: You don’t have time to see the trend, do the trend, post the trend in 48 hours.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah.
Lina Adams: Because the problem is you don’t know at what point you’re seeing the trend.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah.
Lina Adams: So you could already be at the 48 hour window, You might be someone who’s seeing it at the 72 hour window.
You don’t know, so don’t do it.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah. And wouldn’t it be better if you were the one starting the trend.
Lina Adams: That’s- so, okay! So I get to that. So definitely keep up with industry news and events. Totally be posting about relevant content. You know, if like we talked about in a previous episode, if a law gets, well I guess it was this episode, if a law gets passed and it affects your business.
This is very common in the energy industry or, you know, PHMSA comes out with some rule, by all means, talk about it.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah.
Lina Adams: Because everyone in the industry is talking about it, and guess what might happen? Your post might trend.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah, and that’s responsive marketing, not reactionary marketing. There is a huge difference.
Lina Adams: Yes.
Sarah Roberts: So you have to respond to the market, not react to your competitors or react to trends.
Lina Adams: And a great example of this is one of our clients has a podcast where they talk about industry things and very commonly in the middle of filming their season, PHMSA will come out with something that they then will take an episode or two to dive into and then talk about. But what will often happen is they’ll talk about it because it already fits into the season and what they were already discussing.
They’re just taking it and adding it in because it happens to be relevant content to what they were already discussing. So you’re able to adapt, and marketing is adaptive by all means-
Sarah Roberts: And dynamic, always changing, always responsive to the market and to your customers.
Lina Adams: Exactly. You just want to make sure that it’s relevant and you’re not doing something just for the sake of doing it, and serves a general purpose.
Sarah Roberts: Yes, and don’t be one step behind your competitors and that’s where you’ll be if you react to everything.
Lina Adams: Yes. So if you’re doing something because your competitor’s doing something, you’re too late.
Sarah Roberts: It’s not the right reason.
Lina Adams: No, don’t do that. So that’s like our big like, please no. By all means, be excessive, don’t target. That’s fine.
Just don’t react.
Sarah Roberts: Please.
Lina Adams: Not really. Please don’t do any of those because you will be annoying. And we don’t want your marketing to be annoying.
Sarah Roberts: No one should be annoying.
Lina Adams: No one should be annoying.
Sarah Roberts: It defeats the purpose.
Lina Adams: And it is a real fear. So okay. Okay. On the opposite end of the spectrum, we did have a client at one point who was concerned that posting even once a month was excessive.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah.
Lina Adams: That is not the case.
Sarah Roberts: That is not excessive.
Lina Adams: So let’s just- to help you understand, it’s very common for especially on LinkedIn, for your audience, for your whole audience to not see every single post.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah, I think the metric is like 10% of your audience sees a given post at a time. That’s only 10%. So if you post the same post again, people who didn’t see the first time will see it and that’s valuable.
But you just you have to know best practices. You do have to be consistent.
Lina Adams: Exactly.
Sarah Roberts: And you have to post-
Lina Adams: Posting a few times a week is okay. Look, there’s nothing wrong with that. You can post- I would say our sweet spot window that we recommend is anywhere from 2 to 4 times in a given week. Unless you just have like something crazy going on, like an event or something special.
By all means, go for it. And if you have the capacity to post seven times a week, go for it. But you really don’t need to do that.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah, the cost benefit analysis might not be there for every day, right? But for 2 to 3 times a day. That’s kind of the sweet, sweet spot.
Lina Adams: Don’t post 2-3 times a day.
Sarah Roberts: 2-3 times a week.
I’m sorry. That’s what I meant.
Lina Adams: No, that’s okay. We talked about it earlier so we had to clarify.
Sarah Roberts: That is the sweet spot for LinkedIn. And what people who know the algorithm, the algorithm for LinkedIn best, they recommend two to three, four times a week. Not a day.
Lina Adams: Yeah, so don’t worry. You can post without being annoying.
Sarah Roberts: You can also change. So something didn’t work or you got fewer impressions because you’re posting more.
Just don’t post more and then you’re like, responsive instead of reactionary.
Lina Adams: Exactly.
Sarah Roberts: Yay!
Lina Adams: Okay. This is a great episode. This is one of my favorites in a while because it’s just I don’t know, it’s all the things that I guess I wish clients knew about marketing.
Sarah Roberts: So true.
Lina Adams: So. And we finally got to talk about it.
Sarah Roberts: Yay!
Lina Adams: This is a great episode.
Sarah Roberts: Yes. But I mean, all these episodes are my favorite.
Lina Adams: I know. So. Okay, so what’s your takeaway today?
Sarah Roberts: Don’t be spammy. It is. And it’s so clear. Very clear. Yeah. Yeah. Don’t be spammy.
Lina Adams: Don’t spam your clients.
Sarah Roberts: No.
Lina Adams: You don’t like to be spammed, don’t spam them.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah, just do what you- Just do the marketing you would want to see. That’s a really good rule of thumb.
Lina Adams: It is. If you think it’s annoying, it’s annoying.
Sarah Roberts: Yes.
Lina Adams: Most often.
Sarah Roberts: Yeah. So true. Okay.
Lina Adams: Okay. Well, this was a great episode. I really hope y’all enjoyed it. This was our last episode of the season-

Sarah Roberts: What a highlight!
Lina Adams: So we will try a little bit of a break and then we will be back in one month for our next season.
Sarah Roberts: Yay! So fun.
Lina Adams: So fun. Okay. We’ll see you guys next season, bye!

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