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The Truth of Confusion Marketing


Confusion marketing is a controversial marketing tactic that aims to intentionally confuse potential consumers into purchasing something. 

Confusion marketing creates a state of mind in customers that lead to poor purchase decisions. Your buyers may lack knowledge and trust in the goods, but placing them in such a way that it appears to be exactly what they want might persuade them to buy them.

What can Confusion Marketing do for your business?

Confusion marketing has crept into the domain of corporate marketing methods. The placement of fruit liquids next to fresh fruits at the grocery store is an example of confusing marketing. 

It appears easy enough, yet it is effective in persuading clients that the juice is as fresh as the fruits. Another example would be banks that provide premium services. They often perplex the customer by using complex terms and methods that prevent the customer from cross-checking to verify whether they are being misled.

Brands sometimes strive to make their packaging seem virtually identical to that of their competitors. While your clients may be interested in your goods for a few minutes, they will need a proper brand development plan to persuade them to invest in and enjoy your product. Confusion marketing may attract attention, but that’s all it does. It gets people talking, increases your popularity, and spreads word of mouth. Following that, you must have an effective marketing distribution strategy.

Is Confusion Marketing ethical?

While confusion marketing is legal as a selling and marketing approach, businesses should be cautious. Never blatantly copy another brand’s packaging, taglines, or other elements, since this may constitute a violation of copyright. 

Confusion marketing may increase regardless of the size of the organization. And there are situations when the brand has no control over this.

Some examples of Confusion Marketing

Confusion marketing may be seen in the shopping trips to the grocery. Juices from various brands may be found in the fruits and vegetable section. These packaged fruit drinks, on the other hand, are frequently found beside real fruits. This provides the impression that the juices are fresh.

Instead, the fact is that 96 percent of them include chemicals and other potentially harmful ingredients. It succeeds in generating uncertainty, however, because many people purchase these items to improve their health. 

Isn’t fresh fruit juice healthier than juice that has been sitting on the shelf for months?

Customers might be perplexed about which goods to purchase. Fruits or fruit juice in a can? Marketers profit from this confusion by emphasizing the advantages of fruit liquids over whole fruits. As a result, confusion marketing was coined.

Many examples of the confusing marketing approach may be seen in telecommunications, finance, and banking, where pricing plans, contracts, and interest rate offers can be so complex that direct comparisons between rival offers are difficult. Rapid technological change and rising competitiveness define these businesses. As a result, market participants employ whatever strategy is available to attract clients in the short term. They do not pay attention to the aftereffects and ramifications of such techniques at such times.

Characteristics of Confusion Marketing

Another essential feature of confusion marketing is that it is not affected by corporate size. Confusion marketing methods may be used by any firm, big or little. When it comes to confusing marketing, there is no distinction between tiny startups and giant corporations. 

There are instances of businesses of all sizes, small and large, who have adopted this technique in their operations.

Companies must utilize confusion marketing with caution. This is because there are no long-term benefits to confusing marketing if you do not advertise and differentiate your goods. Assume you introduce a conditioner with packaging comparable to TRESemme or any other brand, but no advertising or differentiation. People may lose trust in your brand as a result, and you will be labeled as a copycat.

Bill shock is a negative consequence of telecoms’ confusion marketing, in which clients receive invoices for far more than they expected. Since July 1, 2010, bill shock has been prohibited in the European Union. 

The majority of clients have successfully avoided bill shock by following a cut-off process. This means that once the bill reaches a predetermined limit, no more bills are created.

Marketers employ confusion marketing to try to influence customers’ decision-making processes. Companies have wanted more control over the style of packaging and the range of goods that may be released in an established sector in recent years, due to a growing number of items that use confusion marketing to entice or cause customers to switch brands.


To boost client retention, firms would gain more from providing high-quality services and focusing on increased customer care. This would result in long-term gains, not only financially, but also non-financially, such as increasing market share or higher customer retention.