Adventures in Retail – Advertising Fails

As summer ends and retail stores begin to prepare for the upcoming holiday season, we here at Clientbook want to offer you both encouragement and advise caution.

As the leader in clienteling software of course we’re going to tell you to tap into your existing customer base to maximize results during the holiday shopping frenzy. But we’re also not naïve to the fact that most of you are going to ramp up your holiday advertising efforts in order to attract new customers.Totally understandable.

With that in mind let us share some epic advertising fails and add plead with you to “read the room” or not be “tone deaf” when you launch ads for billboards, radio, or on social media.

Here are some of the most cringeworthy ads:

As if flying doesn’t induce enough anxiety, this ad makes it look like the plane is plunging to the ground.  

Obviously someone didn’t think this sliding door thing through.


Hospitals are advocates of hygiene. So, let’s all join our ungloved hands and promise not to spread germs.

This hometown message to graduating seniors: Keep your head up! A train is coming! Go towards the light? 

Yes, math can be depressing. Get help now.

Just a word of advice: if you are an attorney (or retailer), try not to make yourself look like a vampire in your ads.

Brilliant placement. Wait until nighttime and the zombies will be lining up for funeral care.

Advertising is not always as easy as it seems. And in today’s wacky retail environment, we should all be extra careful with our ads, our budgets, and especially with our customers.

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