The first thing to know about marketing is this: you are going to make mistakes.
Don’t become paralyzed by analysis but it’s important to learn as much as you can about marketing so that you aren’t wasting time and money. To get up to cruising speed as quickly and painlessly as possible avoid making these classic mistakes:
1. Not Getting to Know Your Audience
Do you assume you know who your audience is? Most businesses think they know...but actually do not. Assumptions are often faulty and you need to conduct customer research to accurately understand your customers’ needs wants and concerns. The best way of doing this is directly asking them or utilizing a handful of tools out there today.
Surveys: What I've done before in the past is by emailing my list a survey and giving them something in return. Send out a simple email with either a link to a form that asks questions (Google Forms will do) or you can utilize call to actions in the email itself (depending on what email tool you're using) that will give you real time data on the person you're collecting data on.
Another tool to look at is Ask Your Target Market. They allow you to create a customized target market based off of tons of criteria and then you can ask those people specific questions that may give you more insight into who your ideal persona is or what your persona wants to hear from you about.
Take time to get input from your customers. Developing a comprehensive model of your consumer is essential to crafting content that resonates with him or her.
Watch this quick video on how to create a persona:
2. Not Using FREE Marketing Tools Out There
Google Trends gives you real-time data on what people are searching for in your field and provides related search terms and topics with data on the search volume associated with them.
Google’s Keyword Tool is great for compiling a list of keywords to use in a paid search engine advertising campaign. Start with a handful of terms and the keyword tool will recommend alternatives and display comparative search volume as well as the level of competition for those terms. Read more valuable tips from Google on building a keyword list.
SEMrush is another free tool (limited) that I use on a daily basis and it gives me the competitive intel I need to make granular decisions for content and online advertising tactics.
3. Marketing Without a USP
You must have a solid reason why people should do business with you. Your Unique Selling Proposition is what sets you apart from the competition. Your USP should be used in all of your marketing; think of it as the foundation of your business.
4. Failing to Capture Repeat Customers
Never forget that a good percentage of your business comes from repeat customers. Failing to pay due attention to your current customer base is a huge mistake. It’s easier and cheaper than acquiring new customers. Have systems in place to gather customer information (such as an email marketing list) and sell to them (such a loyalty program for repeat customers). Why? Several reasons:
- You'll see an increase in Customer Lifetime Value (LTV)
- You'll facilitate better communication and brand awareness
- You'll gather amazing amounts of useful data!
5. Not Tracking Results
While it may be tedious tracking analytics such as traffic sources click-through rates conversions unique visitors and bounce rates will help tremendously in refining your marketing strategy.
If you don’t track you don’t really know what is working. As I said up top it’s okay to make marketing mistakes but if you are making mistakes without knowing about it you won’t stop making them.
Each time you launch or relaunch a marketing campaign analyze rethink and move forward with new knowledge and new tools. Every new effort will move you on to better strategies and help drive your business toward success.
If you work with a marketing agency you'll also want to make sure they are tracking and REPORTING everything they're doing. We do at excelerate and we utilize many different tools to do so. One of our favoriate tools to present the data is Google Data Studio. It's free for Cloud Platform customers and super customizable.
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