What Is Undifferentiated Marketing? (Top Advantages & Examples)

When it comes to marketing strategies there is no one size fits all… otherwise, there would be no strategy. 

When it comes to market appeal, different brands, quite simply, do things differently. 

While some brands aim to speak differently from one market segment to the next, others will aim to appeal to all with the same message.

The latter is known as undifferentiated marketing and in this article, I’ll show how it works as well as advantages and examples to show how brands use it successfully.

What Is Undifferentiated Marketing Strategy? (Pros, Cons & Examples)

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What is Undifferentiated Marketing?

Undifferentiated marketing is a marketing strategy when a brand decides to ignore the differences in market segments and appeal to the whole market with one message and one strategy. 

This strategy tends to use mass distribution and mass media to extend their reach as far as possible and appeal to as many people as possible with the same message. 

Differentiated vs Undifferentiated Marketing

Once you understand what undifferentiated marketing is, it’s not going to take too much for you to work out what differenced marketing is.

Quite simply, it’s the opposite. While undifferenced marketing doesn’t distinguish between market segments through marketing messages, differentiated marketing does the exact opposite. 

Not only does it consider the differences between segments, it aims to appeal more specifically to those differences. In other words, what makes one segment unique from another is often when differentiated marketing aims to appeal. 

Why Use Undifferentiated Marketing?

When it comes to branding and marketing, most texts will tell you that the more specificity and relevance you have to a given market or market segment, the more likely it is that you will appeal.

While this is very true, that doesn’t mean that differentiated marketing is always a viable strategy.

Often, though many market segments may have different wants or needs, problems, challenges or circumstances, their decision making factors don’t differ much at all making.

Staples such as dish soap, flour, salt, sugar are just a few examples of products whose brands don’t differentiate in their marketing from one segment to the next.

Everyone buys these products regardless of market segments and most follow the same or a very similar buying decision process making undifferentiated marketing a costly and unnecessary strategy. 

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Undifferentiated Marketing Pros and Cons

When it comes to strategy, there are always considerations that need to be made.

Some strategies work better in some situations than strategies that work better in other situations.

But there are certainly some advantages and disadvantages to undifferentiated marketing that need to be considered. 

Advantages Of Undifferentiated Marketing

Here are some of the most notable advantages of undifferentiated marketing 

Less Research.
Less research is required to segment markets and uncover more specified insights. 

Lower Cost (Media) 
The buying power nature of mass marketing reduces the cost of media spend.

Lower Cost (Creative) 
Reduced cost in producing multiple creative campaigns for each segment. 

Campaign Longevity
Marketing campaigns speak to less specific wants or needs which change less often. 

Higher Profit Margins
Reduced cost compared to differentiated marketing increases overall profit margins. 

Disadvantages of Undifferentiated Marketing

Wasted Exposure
Undifferentiated marketing is more likely to reach unrelated audiences who have no want or need.   
Less Relevance Across Segments
Campaigns and messages hold less relevancy across market segments making campaigns less efficient to specific segments in comparison.
Less Flexibility To Segment Changes
Segment changes in taste and behaviours are not acted upon and represent lost opportunity.

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Undifferentiated Marketing Example (Coca-Cola)

The Coca-Cola brand represents a perfect example of undifferentiated marketing.

Throughout their campaigns, Coca-Cola speaks to broad markets without differentiation.  They don’t differentiate their campaigns or messaging from one augment to the next and rarely chances their distribution channels for their mass market approach.

From their Christmas campaigns to their summer campaigns and everywhere in-between, Coke aims to reach as many people as possible with their overarching position of happiness 

Over To You

In truth, the more relevant you are to a market segment, the more likely you are to resonate.

That said, the less relevant you are they less costly and the more affordable it is to gain extensive reach.

As with any strategy, weight up the goals of your marketing campaigns, assess the pros and cons and choose between specificity, or mass appeal.

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