Check out the Marketing IQ Test.

I scored 120 despite not knowing anything about marketing. I only answered 10 out of 20 questions (the others, “don’t know”) but got all 10 right. I suspect that the low CEO score, if it’s representative, represents mainly overconfidence — the CEOs thought that they knew more than they actually know, and attempted to answer questions that they should have passed up. This to me is the most interesting implication of the test, though as it validates my biases about corporate executives it too should not be accepted uncritically.

(via Davis Freeberg, Business Pundit.com and Marketing Headhunter.com)

9 thoughts on “Overconfidence”

  1. I didn’t see anything that said the test had been validated. Is there really any evidence that successful marketing executives do better on it than those who are less successful?

    Many of the questions seem to me to be matters of opinion or definition. Where exactly is the distinction between a “new product” and an evolutionary extension of an existing one? And how does anyone know what is going to happen during the “coming decade”?

  2. Good points. The test seems to be effective at drawing traffic to a consultant’s website. Whether it is itself a good marketing tool is another question.

  3. Based on the nature of the test, I’d rather be termed “Dangerous to your company” than A Marketing Genius. After reading your experience Jonathan, I went through and answered 7 questions right, and put I don’t know in the other 13, and got a 104 score. This marketing stuff is waaaay easy dude!

  4. I took the test and thought that some of the questions were badly worded, especially the one about focus groups. The question was whether companies thought focus groups helped in the selection of marketing. The answer was that focus groups should not be the only reason for selection of marketing. They also said that focus groups could help but not be the only source. The question and the answer didn’t match up at all. Several of the other questions were the same way. If you want a specific answer, then make the question specific.

  5. this reminds me of those stupid financial quizes at Yahoo Finance sponsored by TD Waterhouse. The questions they ask are polling or trivia pursuit type questions, as opposed to questions that would actually help you become a better investor, which I presume is what they’re trying to convey. So most of the time, the answer I give is a WAG – wild-ass-guess…

  6. I scored 124, and the only time I got involved in marketing was selling Encyclopedia Americana door to door when I was in college. (They’re out of business long ago.)

    I was soooo bad that I was giving my spiel to one couple and the Husband finally put me out of my misery by saying he just wanted to “see what the competition was like.” . . . He was regional sales manager for Encyclopedia Britannica.

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