I’ve made my fair share of marketing mistakes over the years and it can be costly – not just financially but also in terms of time and effort, which in turn could mean lost business.
It is highly likely that you will make some marketing errors during your business and entrepreneurial path. It’s just natural and that’s whether you’re a small business or a large enterprise.
And many say that making mistakes is the best way to learn. It can be.
But too many mistakes could be detrimental to your business over the long term. So, what’s the best course of action?
AVOID THEM in the first place!
The following are the key mistakes that I see so many businesses make all to often. It doesn’t matter what stage of business you’re at, just don’t do them!
This has to be THE No.1 mistake that so many businesses make, in my view.
Constantly, companies are starting up left, right and centre with great products or services.
But they fail to do the due diligence on finding out exactly who their target market is.
You may think you understand who they are, their preferences and their loyalty to you.
But chances are you don’t.
If you’ve not properly done your research and analysed the feedback, you likely don’t understand your consumer’s needs and behaviours.
Oh and by the way ‘everyone’ is not a valid answer.
And even if you did do it when you started your business, be aware that tastes and attitudes change over time, so monitoring and re-checking with your customer base is equally as important.
Figuring out exactly who your ideal customer is will be crucial for success. Then targeting them specifically will change your business fortunes.
There’s a process that you should go through to make this happen and I talk about it extensively and show you how to do it in my free business guide. Even if you’re not ‘just starting out’, but in all honesty you’ve not homed in on your target audience, give the guide a read and put the steps into action.
Everything you project your business to be should be for the customer. Whether it be for a product or a service, it is the customer that will have that experience.
So, you need to project your product or service in the simplest way possible.
The messaging that you put forward for your company, a specific product or even a suite of services needs to be unified with a clear, concise messaging strategy.
If you make it too complex or difficult to understand, you’re just losing potential business.
Think of it this way; If your message is over-complicated, then your customer must make a more complex decision.
Make your brand voice clear.
Make your business messaging clear.
Make your product descriptions clear.
Make the service offering clear.
Make your calls-to-action clear.
It’s as simple as that.
According to a recent survey, nearly a third of small businesses in the US still don’t have a website and the figures are similar for the UK.
That’s literally c.10 million US small businesses don’t have a website.
If you’re reading this and you’re thinking ‘yeah, that’s me’, then you need to get one.
As in, you probably should finish reading this article and then go and get a website.
Why? Because you probably just lost a customer.
Right now, someone was just looking online for your product or service and instead of clicking on your company name, a competitor of yours, who does have a website, just bagged your business.
Oops. There goes another one!
If you do have a website, well done. You can move on to the next point.
Keeping an eye on what marketing your competitors are doing gives you a stronger feel of what works and what doesn’t.
And not just your local competition – think national or even global.
Find some companies that you think are doing well or maybe those you aspire to (maybe you’ve even subscribed to their email list) and spend some time studying their marketing techniques and processes.
Follow what they’re doing over a period of time, which will show you what tactics work and which ones don’t. If they’re repeating them, it works. If they don’t, it probably doesn’t.
Understand what they do and then implement them yourself. Test them with your audience, track performance and adjust as necessary.
Pretty much everything that anyone buys, from a sofa to a pizza to a house to a pair of jeans is 90% driven by emotion.
The unconscious is the driving force that takes a person from having a need for something to making a decision to purchase.
So, ensure that your marketing hits those emotions – the emotions that make them feel loved, wanted and connected with you, your brand and your business.
Sure, great offers or reduced pricing can be appealing, but doing this too much can do more harm to your brand than otherwise.
Focus more on how you can influence the emotive behaviours of your audience.
You can do this with the copy on your site or marketing materials, to build awareness, trust and positivity with your potential and current clientele.
If you need any help with your marketing efforts, don’t hesitate to get in touch.
I'm Dan. After over 20 years working in finance, including starting my own regulated business and then transitioning to a copywriter, I've decided to share my knowledge, experience and business views with you.
My mission? To empower you make better decisions in your business and personal life. You'll find me talking about business, success, marketing techniques and how this connects to well-being and mindfulness.
Given that I'm still passionate about investment, you may also find some personal finance guidance (not advice) here and there. Enjoy!