“What Happened To Advertising?” – Massimo Moruzzi

Here is the review I left on Amazon – (yeah, it was that bad)

Listen – I’m not trying to steal anyone’s magic, but this guy stole Bob Hoffman’s ENTIRE shtick for this book, and reading this DIRECTLY after reading two of Bob’s books (Marketers Are From Mars, and Ad Contrarian) is a slap to everyone’s face. Massimo Moruzzi says nothing in this book that is not better phrased by Bob Hoffman, and one is better off reading the source material for this book – the meat of the marketing matter – rather than waste time on this vapid, Franken-pamphlet.

The whole book reads like a giant, unfocused rant. Every example provided is unoriginal, whole sentences are LIFTED from Wikipedia and other published books (but with a few words, and even numbers, switched or enhanced for gravity?), every conclusion is uninspired, and at every moment during this book, Mr. Moruzzi blindly admonishes marketers everywhere for being stupid, unsuccessful at social media, un-creative, and not (insert ad legend here). Without ever submitting a genuine and viable solution for the real problems that exist in advertising and social media, this book takes a giant, pointless dump on the marketing lawn, and pompously kicks grass on it’s steaming pile of drivel as it walks away.

In the last two pages, Mr. Moruzzi suggests that to solve the problems in advertising and marketing, the hapless marketer should be “a rock star.” While I might think of this advice as listening to customer pain-points, understanding how my product or service interfaces with someone’s life, solves their problems, using this insight to create awesome content and inspired ads that drive business goals – another marketer might think that being a rock star is slamming a fifth of Stoli, snorting Aspirin off a chihuahua, and trashing an entire floor of the downtown Des Moines Marriott. But with no other actionable advice from the author, other than “tell stories” – how can the hapless marketer hope to lose their hap?

I vacillated between one and two stars for this book, but the one star rating stays. If this guy can sum up the complex nature of the current marketing and advertising ecosystems with his blithe and gossamer-thin observations, then I can reduce his “honest” work with an honest one star rating, and a profanity laced review. Moruzzi fails to understand that Bob Hoffman can use profanities, and he can talk smack on PPC, and he can call BS on “Conversations with brands” because THAT’S WHO HE IS. It works for him, that’s his house. He’s an old grizzled bastard – his voice is authentic. He genuinely hates, BUT, there is a silver lining to Hoffman’s cloudy nature. He has a rapport with his audience – he speaks WITH them.

Moruzzi’s derision of businesses reads more like a castratic-pantomime of Hoffman – lacking sand, lacking faith, lacking depth. Moruzzi seems to have zero hope for the future – doesn’t believe in the abilities of the people he’s speaking to. Lamenting about the bad choices some companies make does nothing to inspire the marketer or advertiser looking to improve themselves. This book is so full of Moruzzi – there’s no room for anyone else.

Life is too short to read someone’s book, who read someone else’s book.

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