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Kevin J Clancy - Marketing Consultant
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Think you have the marketing smarts to take you to the top? Give our Marketing Best Practices Test a whirl and see where you stack up in terms of marketing knowledge.

Before you take the test, just consider that based on the results of a 50-question marketing IQ test given to a national sample of more than 1000 CEOs, Copernicus found that the average marketing IQ of senior executives is just 79 (with 100 being "average" and 160 the top score possible). This is not surprising given that most CEOs do not come from the ranks of the marketing department. They may have been trained in finance or operations or even sales. But they do not know marketing.

Is it any wonder that only two out of ten U.S. Companies grow organically—through their marketing efforts and the introduction of new products—by more than 2 or 3 percent per year and that the rest are just holding their own or actually declining?

Please read each of the following 20 statements and mark the answer True, False, or I Don't Know. If you don't know, you're better off choosing "I don't know" rather than guessing as so many CEO's did in our national study. In this test, as in the real world, you pay a penalty for a wrong decision. After you answer each of the 20 questions, your Best Practices acumen will be automatically scored.

Good luck!

  1. Brand Equity and Customer Equity are two almost interchangeable concepts used by marketers to help set a "value" on a brand, product or service compared to competitors.

  2. Women execs are more likely than their male counterparts to make marketing decisions based on facts and research rather than intuition and creative judgment.

  3. In large, successful companies, marketing and sales organizations generally work together in a coherent, integrated fashion to ensure the success of the organization.

  4. Most marketers will earn more profits from new products in the next three to five years than from products which are in the marketplace today.

  5. As the number of new brands in almost every product category increases over time, most product categories are becoming more differentiated rather than commoditized.

  6. Most conventional approaches to market segmentation including need state, lifestyle and demographic segmentation yield disappointing results. Among other problems, they are generally not particularly actionable.

  7. Sports and event marketing are proven ways to help build a brand. That’s why they have become a significant component in many marketing budgets.

  8. American companies are increasingly successful at satisfying the needs of their B2B and/or B2C customers. Across a broad range of industries, the average grade is "B" or better.

  9. A Buying Funnel and a Hierarchy of Effects are very different concepts employed by marketers to evaluate marketing effectiveness.

  10. Media planners at most major advertising agencies know little about the relative ROI of traditional print, television, radio, and out-of-home advertising.

  11. One-hundred percent customer satisfaction is an admirable business objective.

  12. Thirty to forty percent or more of American brands are well positioned. They offer prospects a clear raison d’être, a reason to buy.

  13. As many as two-thirds of buyers in most B2B and B2C categories are relatively price insensitive — meaning they are willing to pay more for a product if it meets some other important purchase criteria.

  14. A reasonable way to find out what motivates buyers to make a purchase in a particular category is to ask a large representative cross-section of buyers how important 30 or more different attributes and benefits are when considering a brand, product, or service. The most "important" characteristics are the strongest motivators.

  15. According to the latest research studies, the average ROI for consumer advertising is negative.

  16. Advertising pre-testing is a waste of time and money. You can’t really know the effectiveness of an ad unless you run the ad in the real world.

  17. The most profitable customers of a firm are often the biggest buyers in the category—they are labeled the "heavy users" or "heavy buyers."

  18. Major companies generally make their strategic marketing decisions after evaluating alternative decisions in terms of forecasted profitability. For example, a company would only decide on a targeting, positioning or pricing strategy after evaluating alternative strategies in terms of profitability.

  19. New product appeal is positively related to profitability. The more people say they really like a new product concept, the more profitable it is likely to be.

  20. Most large marketers today have measured the links between the inputs to a marketing plan—budget dollars, GRPs, etc.—and the outputs—awareness, preference, incremental sales, etc. This enables them to better understand the strengths and weaknesses of their marketing programs.

This Marketing Best Practices Test is one of many intellectual properties that Kevin has developed for his company, Copernicus, arguably the most innovative consulting and research firm in the nation.


Kevin Clancy - Marketing Consultant