Everyone makes mistakes, It is a part of life. However if you don’t learn from them, you’ll be going around in circles for the rest of your life. Mistakes can (and will) happen when marketing so I’ve put together a list of the most common marketing mistakes I could find. Are you guilty of making any of them?
You don’t have a website
Some business owners feel they don’t need a website because they have local customers who know who they are and if you are one of those business owners I’m afraid you could be missing out on a large amount of customers. People tend to search online for products/services that are available in their local area before they actually step out of the door to go and visit these businesses. So, if you don’t have a website, how do you expect them to find you?
You don’t track results
So, you have all your social media set up correctly, your website looking good and all of your links working. But, how do you know how much of a difference all of it is making if you’re not tracking your results! You could have been doing something for months that is making little to no difference or even having a negative effect. Tracking helps you to see if you’re making mistakes with marketing so you can rectify them quickly.
You don’t know what your competitors are doing
Keeping an eye on your competitors will help you to stay one step ahead of them, but be careful it doesn’t become your next obsession!. You can also see if there is anything that it working particularly well (or not so well) for them so you can try something similar (or avoid at all costs). Even if they are doing terribly, it is good to know so you don’t make the same mistakes they are.
You are trying to reach the wrong audience.
You should know who your audience is before you begin to offer the product/service. So why are you targeting people that will clearly not be interested. You wouldn’t offer trampolines to care homes would you? Make sure you clearly know who you want to target, what channels they are using and get yourselves on those channels.
Trying to target everyone
If you are trying to sell to everyone you don’t really have a target audience and that can be as bad for business as targeting the wrong audience. Make sure you have a clear picture of the people that will actually want to use your products/services and find out where they are online and as in the previous point, get yourselves on those channels!!
You try to hire people to do your marketing for you without trying it for yourself.
I know you want your business to be a success and so anyone with common sense would hire someone that knows what they’re doing rather than struggle through it themselves. But what happens when they want to discuss marketing decisions/plans/campaigns/promotions with you? You won’t have a clue what they are talking about, they may try to simplify it but you need to know what’s going on in your own business and learning something new never hurt anyone.
You have no written out marketing plan.
This can cause major problems, if you don’t write it down you have nothing to reference to. You may know where you want your business to go in your head, but you will not remember everything. Having a written marketing plan will help you to keep on track, you can plan reviews, promotions, campaigns and set out times that you can go back and review them. It will help you to stay organised and give you a benchmark you can look at to make sure you are on track to reach your business goals. A marketing plan will also give you deadlines and a budget which will also help to keep you on track.
You put more work into social media than into your website
It all well and good that you are keeping your social media accounts up to date, working correctly and posting regularly. But if consumers follow the links to your website and see that it is being neglected, all the hard work you put into your social media will account for nothing. Make sure you allocate your time evenly across both you social media channels and keeping your website running and up to date. You could even put a live social media feed on your website so it is updated as you update your social media.
No attention to detail
You could make the best advertisement in the world but if you don’t check through it and make sure there are no silly spelling/grammar mistakes, you will have spent money on something that will not bring people into your business. Bad spelling/grammar shows a lack of professionalism, it will affect the image of your brand and people may even doubt your credibility as a business.
Using only one marketing channel
Fair enough, if you are confident on Facebook then, by all means, use Facebook for your business. But don’t just use Facebook! Your audience will be spread out across multiple channels so you need to be too. Some channels allow you to link your others to them so you only have to post once and they will be sent out to your other channels. I wouldn’t recommend doing this all the time though as people may become bored of seeing the same content across multiple channels. Cater to the needs of the channel, you could also appoint employees to manage a specific channel so you’re not having to do it all yourself. You can find the Black Rebel Group on all social media platforms!
Using all possible channels
I know the point above told you to use more than one but this point is telling you not to use them all. You go where your customers are, if they are not on it, don’t use it! It wastes time and you risk spreading your content too thinly as there are too many channels for you to manage and you don’t have the time effectively post on them all.
Not knowing what makes your business different
If you don’t know what makes your business stand out, then how do you expect your customers to? There may be multiple business in the area offering the same/similar products and services so you need to communicate why coming to you is better than going somewhere else. You need a unique selling point (USP), if you are not sure of your USP, there are several guides on how to develop one, here’s one from Marketing Donut.
Not communicating with customers
How do you know what your customers want if you don’t ask them? Also if a customer feels ignored they will probably not want to use your products/services again. Keeping your customers involved will make them feel valued and you will receive some valuable feedback from them as an added bonus. Public Relations is also a part of marketing and how you handle a negative situation with a customer can have a massive effect on how your business is perceived. Having a policy for dealing with this situation and all other communications with customers will ensure that a negative review/situations do not have a negative effect on your business and it’s image.
So, I’ve listed just some of the most common marketing mistakes I’ve found but there are plenty more. I love getting your feedback and so I want to know if there are any mistake you think I’ve missed out, let me know in the comments. 🙂