Summary of The End of Advertising As We Know It

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The End of Advertising As We Know It book summary


9 Overall

9 Applicability

8 Innovation

9 Style


Deeply informed by his marketing experience at Coca-Cola, Sergio Zyman knows advertising theories, but he doesn’t like them. He is marketing’s angry child, shouting, "Traditional advertising just isn’t working." He delights in hurling stones at traditional advertising icons, including "brand awareness," which may get your product considered, but will not guarantee a sale or an increase in sales. For sales heft, he postulates, position your product to be relevant to the consumer. Build this "brand relevance," then start working on media buzz. He compliments his own marketing expertise, but who wants a shy promoter? He says corporations waste ad dollars, so if you work in a traditional glass-house advertising agency, you won’t feel too secure when you see angry kid Zyman picking up a rock. His targets, according to, are people who work in Madison Avenue glass houses, and those who hire them.

In this summary, you will learn

  • Why traditional advertising doesn’t work;
  • How to use the critical elements of successful branding;
  • How to target customers with packaging, celebrity endorsements, market research and free media; and
  • Why your employees are the best ambassadors of your brand.

About the Author

Sergio Zyman, who holds an MBA from Harvard, headed an team of expert marketers at Coca-Cola. After he left Coke, he wrote The End of Marketing As We Know It (2000), stating his views on getting your message out (i.e. "Marketing isn’t about trinkets and trash; it’s about selling. It’s not an art; it’s a science"). He subsequently founded the Zyman Marketing Group, which handles banking, video, telecommunications and sports clients through three U.S. offices.



Who Murdered Advertising?
Most advertising executives don’t understand that traditional advertising, which primarily entertains, doesn’t work. Moreover, most ads are designed to increase awareness - and awareness does not get you sales. Companies that don’t get wise to this will fail. ...

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