Scott Griffiths has the slightly unusual job title of chief financial officer of marketing.

And one lesson he’s gained from over seven years fulfilling this role at Farmers Insurance is not entirely flattering for his industry colleagues: “Don’t trust marketeers.”

Why? Because, Griffiths told the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) Advertising Financial Management Conference in Phoenix, Arizona, many of the claims made for marketing campaigns simply don’t hold up to closer scrutiny because they’re focused on results that are relatively unimportant to the bottom line.

“It took me a long while to realize this, but it’s actually common sense. You give a product, service or your brand to a marketer and they will polish it, they will spin it, and put all the good points out there to a consumer, and hide away all the bad points,” Griffiths said.

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