5 Marketing Mistakes from Emily in Paris (and how to fix them)

Finished watching the latest offering of Emily in Paris? Let’s talk about the biggest blunders Savoir makes – and how to avoid them yourself.

Netflix’s hit original series Emily in Paris aired its second season just before Christmas, and I was just as hooked this time around. The show follows Emily as she navigates a move to Paris, quickly becoming a social media influencer. Emily holds the elusive job title of “marketing executive” at marketing agency Savoir, where her job consists largely of attending glamorous parties. And she achieves big results –  viral posts and high-profile clients are her specialty. But just how did she do it? And how realistic is this? 

I can’t help but relate to Emily’s journey: I’ve just moved somewhere new myself to begin my career in marketing (albeit not Paris) at mmunic. And while I haven’t yet had to babysit celebrities or host events in St.Tropez like Emily has done, my experience so far with mmunic has given me the opportunity to put together some feedback and suggestions for Savoir (I’m here if you want to trade notes, Netflix).   

So without further ado, let’s  look at some of Emily’s biggest marketing mistakes from what we’ve seen of her time at Savoir – and consider how you can avoid making the same mistakes with your own strategy.

The top 5 marketing mistakes Emily makes

1. Not speaking the customer’s language – literally and figuratively

By this, not only do I mean Emily arrives in Paris without speaking any French – we never see her do any kind of client research! Customer profiling involves detailing everything you know about your target customer so that you can market specifically to that group. I’ve realised that your message is going to be especially valuable if you are marketing to an already interested crowd. Think about it like this: Would it be better to reach 1000 people with your marketing campaign but have no follow up enquiries, or reach only 10 but come away with 5 enquiries?

Take a look at your current customers to start building this profile. Think about what that person is engaging with or affected by right now. For example, if you want Gen Z to engage with a product or service, it could be a good idea to promote it using TikTok. 

Next, “map” your target customer’s journey. That means write down how they go from hearing about you to making a purchase. Understanding the process your customer is going through will help you offer the best experience at each point of contact. This is exactly how we learn to speak our customers’ real language.

2. Ringard! (or being “basic”)

Emily gets called “ringard” or “basic” by one of her top clients – he thought that her approach was too obvious. But Emily was right when she said that it’s not bad to be “basic” or “ringard”. 

Being “basic” can mean that you’re popular – if listening to pop music or drinking Starbucks makes you basic, then I unashamedly am. This only becomes a problem when you’re lacking a USP or “unique selling point”. This is what makes your brand stand out from your competitors. 

Have a think about what makes your brand different to others. Is it your level of customer service, or your product prices? Make sure this is promoted to your customers across your digital platforms – social media, website and emails – and you’ll never be accused of being “ringard!”.

3. Over-promising: the importance of SMART objectives.

A bed in The Louvre! Her clients’ faces plastered on a suitcase! Emily promises all of this and more for her marketing clients. It’s not often she stops to think about whether she can actually do it. I like to think that I will be able to be ambitious about what I can deliver for a client, but I don’t have the magic of TV montage editing on my side. I love that Emily’s ideas for her clients are fun and exciting: but goals for your brand need to be realistic. 

Say you want to double the amount of traffic on your website – great, but how will you do it? Easy – use SMART objectives. A “SMART” objective is one that is specific, measurable, appropriate, relevant and timely. Breaking your big goals down into these smaller steps makes them so much easier to understand and actually put into practice. A SMART goal here might be to list your business in a relevant online directory. 

4. Winging it: why content planning is worth your time

Emily can take a random selfie, caption it “#ouiparis” and then gets thousands of likes. Yes, hashtags can help you reach your target audience, but few ever manage that level of success with them – seeing your posts go viral like Emily’s is rare. 

Instead, your marketing content should be considered: think about timing, tone, message, aesthetic and captions. Going back to point number 1, all of this will help make sure you’ll be speaking your customer’s language. You might find it useful to plan your content in advance using a calendar or digital planner, as being consistent with your posts is a surefire way to gather momentum in your campaigns. 

It’s important to reflect on whether what you are doing is working, and make changes where you need to – check out the interactions of posts you’ve made and consider what did well and why. That’s your recipe to success! I’ve found the best thing to do is check out other accounts you admire for inspiration.

5. Missing the opportunity to experiment or try out new marketing channels

Emily does everything – she hosts events, manages social media and shoots ad campaigns. She’s also missing a host of tools from her arsenal: email marketing being the biggest one. If I’ve learnt one thing since working at mmunic, it’s that sending a well-designed email marketing campaign to your customer base is one of the quickest and most effective ways to deliver your message to a large number of people, with an impressive return on your investment. 

You should consider whether you are missing the opportunity for valuable client interaction with your email marketing. As a bit of a novice, I’ve been using the mmunicMail platform to design, test, send and track marketing emails – using a sophisticated but easy-to-use platform like this makes email marketing a lot less scary than it may seem.

Is putting together a marketing strategy all French to you? Let me translate. Say Bonjour! to mmunic – the heart of communication. We have a dedicated and friendly team ready to learn about your business and  discover how we can help your marketing strategy. We can assist with email marketing, social media management and even website design. Get in touch for a free one-to-one consultation today, whether you’re in Paris or further afield.

Written by

Picture of Rebecca Phoenix

Rebecca Phoenix

Email and Social Media Marketing Assistant.


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