In case you didn’t realise it, marketing is the heart of your business.
Without it, no one is going to know who you are or what you offer, and you’re not going to make any money = business suicide.
Most businesses (yours is probably included in this) go about marketing the wrong way. They make HUGE mistakes, and lots of smaller ones too.
So quit blaming your tools or the world, and let’s get real on why most marketing efforts fail, plus why you shouldn’t – and mustn’t – give up.
Why does most marketing fail?
- No target audience
If you’ve not taken the time to establish who your specific target audience is, what their interests are, and what their pain points are, then you’re not going to be able to speak to them.
You might think it’s better to take a general approach and target everyone, but you’d be wrong.
Ever heard that saying, you can’t please them all?
If you try and please everyone, you end up pleasing no one.
The sooner you get clear on your niche audience, the better off your business will be.
- You’re guessing
Marketing is not an accident. It takes real skill to create a powerful marketing campaign that produces great results. It requires research, making tough decisions, testing things out, and making changes accordingly.
Marketing is not something you can wing – so quit trying to fluke it.
- Doing what everyone else is doing
If you’re copying other people’s successful marketing campaigns and tactics, you’re only going to end up looking exactly the same as them.
Plus, it will have already been seen, which will make you look like you’re behind the times.
You need to do something that’s going to help you stand out from your competition and be remembered by your audience.
This is one of those times when you need to step outside that cushion filled comfort zone, and do something bold.
- Thinking short term
Marketing pays off in the long run, so if you’re after instant results and quick wins, you’re barking up the wrong tree.
There’s no secret sauce to help your business reach instant success. It’s about all of the little wins along the way, which will gradually build up over time.
- You’ve not selected the right medium for your campaign
Don’t be that business that blames the medium on their campaign failing, but do think carefully about which one is suitable for your audience and what you’re trying to accomplish.
For example, if your target audience is teens – you should be using platforms like Snapchat and Instagram. If you’re targeting writers, you should be creating content for Facebook and medium. If you’re a fashion brand, Instagram and youtube are natural fits.
Think about where your audience is, and go to them.
- Putting all your eggs in one basket
The more you try and diversify your marketing efforts, the greater your chances of success will be.
Concentrating solely on one medium or tool (regardless of how great an idea you think this is) is dangerous and can seriously backfire.
Don’t be afraid to mix things up, and try something new.
- Not tracking results
This is a rookie mistake that SO many small businesses (and bigger ones) continue to make. If you’re not measuring your results, then how are you going to know what’s working and what’s not?
The secret to success in marketing is doubling down on what works, but you need to first figure out what that is. So ALWAYS measure and track your marketing campaigns!
- You’ve not met your audience’s needs
If you’re thinking about yourself instead of your customers, it’s going to show, and chances are it won’t speak to them. First, you need to know who your audience actually is (which we covered in point #1) to be able to do this.
What problems do they have? How can you solve them with your product or service? And how can you communicate that in a way that is going to capture their attention?
If you’ve been trying this for a while and you’re not getting the results you’d hoped for – reach out to a selection of your target audience and ask them what they need from you.
- Ignoring your competition
You don’t want to go the opposite way and simply copy what your competitors are doing, but in order to be different, you need to first know what they’re doing and assess their strengths and weaknesses.
This will give you a much-needed point of difference. So don’t be ignorant to what’s going on around you in your field of business.
- Not building relationships
People are looking for more than just a great product these days. Increasingly, they’re looking for a deeper meaning and connection with the business they buy from.
So reach out and chat with people. Provide value. Build organic, authentic relationships, and see what happens when you unveil your offerings.
- Selling all the time
You shouldn’t be afraid to talk about and sell your products – and if you’ve got a great product you believe in, this shouldn’t be difficult for you. But, there is a fine balance.
No one wants to be sold to constantly, or sold to in a sleazy way. And if you’re executing your marketing strategy the right way, there will be no need to sell all the time anyway.
But don’t be defeated!
We hope we haven’t put you off this whole marketing thing altogether!
Like all great things, cracking your unique marketing recipe will take time. It’s supposed to, so don’t get defeatist when you’re not seeing instant results. Keep going. Track EVERYTHING (we talked about this, remember?), be realistic with your goals, review your tactics and methods frequently, and try all things at least twice before you decide they’re ineffective.
Even the biggest businesses like Pepsi, McDonald’s, and Netflix have made huge marketing blunders in their time – but guess what? They’ve all bounced back! As can you. So quit worrying so much.
You need to look at marketing as a unique journey.
You know where you want to end up, but the path you’re going to take isn’t quite figured out yet. There may be bumps, u-turns, and collisions along the way – who knows?
You’ve just gotta buckle up, and keep moving forward on your journey, learning from every new experience as you go.