Many companies wonder why their selling efforts are not successful when they worked so hard. They attended trade shows, introduced pay-per-click campaigns, refreshed their websites, and even sent out direct mail. Even so, they are left frustrated and disappointed with underused resources and weak sales.
If you are going through a similar experience, you must be wondering what you did wrong. Well, you have to first understand that good marketing should not be a disconnected series of activities. Neither should it be a single task. It should be a well-coordinated endeavour that takes consistency and planning. It should also involve steering clear of the following blunders.
1. Misreading What Potential Customers Want
Do you really understand what your audience is looking for? Are you aware of their challenges and can you clearly explain how you are the best person to help them? Before you put together a plan, you have to outline the characteristics of your ideal client, the needs that you are able to meet, and the solutions which you can provide better than anyone else. The more you know about your market, the more effective your efforts. So, find out why people chose your business over others so you can produce the desired results.
2. Failing To Check The Details
Whether it is online or offline, the image you project on a regular basis is how consumers will perceive your brand. Ergo, you must never neglect to review your materials for grammatical errors, typos, and other issues that can affect the professionalism you’re seeking to portray. If you do not care to put your best foot forward, a potential customer will think that you are unable to deliver above and beyond when providing services to him or her. So, do have another set of eyes check your brochures, flyers, and other materials before you publish in print or on the web.
3. Thinking That SEO Is Like Magic
You have to realise that there is no technique that can guarantee first page results. If something sounds too good to be true, it most likely is. Do not fall victim to search engine optimisation scams that prey on start-ups and SMEs alike. Find a company you can trust, preferably one that really knows what will work for your business. It will take time for your website to appear in SERPs but you have to remain persistent and patient. SEO can be worth it as long as it is done right.
4. Deviating From Your Own Brand
Your name is essentially the promise you make to your clients. People will notice immediately when there is a disconnect between what you guaranteed and what they receive. If your selling activities veer away from the reputation and voice that you have already established, there lies the possibility of offending or misinforming prospects and customers. Make sure that you stay true to your promise and message at all times.
5. Disregarding Best Practices
To whom are you sending out your email newsletters? If they are being delivered to people who don’t want them, you need to rethink your methods. You do not want your company getting blacklisted so stick to proper etiquette and techniques. Turn to reputable service providers such as MailChimp to build your contact list rather than find details on your own. You should also book the services of a virtual receptionist to man your telephones. Work with agencies like Message Direct who also provides outbound call services.
6. Neglecting To Regularly Review Your Online Reputation
If you have been trying to be visible on the web, you should know what is being written about you. A consumer will or won’t get in touch with you depending on what has been published about your products and services. As an entrepreneur, you need to perform searches on your name and address on a regular basis. Doing so will enable you to be informed of any issues and resolve them as soon as possible. While it might be impossible to always get five stars, you can at least drown out negative testimonials and improve your operations to avoid similar incidents in the future.
7. Going At It Alone
It is not wrong for an SME to take control of their campaigns. Still, when it comes to laying the foundation for a consistent online presence, it is better to get the help of experts, be it in website development or pay-per-click advertising. It saves you time and money to have brand identity right from the onset. Hire only professionals for areas that require unique skills i.e. user experience, interface design and content so you don’t have to worry about starting over.
8. Getting Social Media Wrong
You might love to be active on every single platform but that is not often advisable due to limited resources. You need to be around to effectively engage with your followers. When you aren’t present when they are, it would be the same as committing business suicide. Select a few social networks that are crucial to connecting with your target market, be it Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest. When your company grows, you can add more accounts and have others handle them. Just make sure you have personal profiles along with your corporate ones to build and maintain trust among your fans.
9. Thinking That Marketing Is Another Expense
It is wrong to think that everything you do in selling is an expense that you can easily cut when things aren’t working right. Instead, you should consider it a process that requires consistent and regular investment to demonstrate your expertise and boost awareness. If you stop your promotion efforts to cut costs, you are only headed to failure. Besides, there are various means to getting quality results with minimal cash-outs; you just have to do your homework.
There are many other marketing blunders that you could possibly run into, such as lame headlines, ineffective calls to action, and lousy landing pages. However, the nine enumerated above are the ones that can take you out of deep troubled waters so avoid them as much as possible!