If you’ve just launched a company for the first time or if you struggle to get decent results from your marketing efforts, this blog post is an essential read. Today, you are going to learn about some of the common mistakes made across the board. With a bit of luck, this information will help to ensure you never repeat the errors made by thousands of companies and entrepreneurs in the past. Regardless of the nature of your operation, the same rules should apply. So, read this article carefully, and then take a look at your marketing strategy to ensure it doesn’t contain any of these troublesome elements.
Not focusing on digital marketing
Digital marketing is a hot topic at the moment, and the industry is growing by the day. If you don’t focus at least some of your promotional efforts online, you’re almost guaranteed to lose out to the competition. There are a few reasons digital advertising will benefit your operation, and they include:
- Having access to millions of users
- Reduced cost compared to real-world ads
- Possible to target individuals based on any factor or interest
The best ways to promote any company online involve making use of social media websites like Facebook and Twitter. You should also get in touch with graphic designers and ask them to create some attractive banner images. You can then use Google Adwords to attract new customers to your website. You just need to perform some market research, so you know some information about the people you want to reach.
Not pushing your products or services in the real-world
While digital marketing is sure to create some excellent results, you also need to promote your products or services in the real world. There are lots of methods and techniques you could try to get the best outcomes. As with most things in this world, sometimes the best strategy involves trial and error. So, you need to test out lots of different methods until you find something that works for your brand. Some suggestions might include:
- Roadside advertising banners
- Printed brochures
- Printed leaflets
- Charity event sponsorships
The possibilities are endless and only limited by your imagination. However, it’s wise to call your marketing team in for a meeting to discuss the best route forwards. Sometimes ideas as straightforward as hanging a sign outside your premises that show your logo and business name can produce fantastic outcomes.
Not launching a website to showcase the business
There is no getting away from the fact that all successful companies need a website to promote their products and services. Do not make the mistake of using a free site builder or something similar if you don’t have much cash to spend. Consumers can spot an amateur site design a mile away, and so you won’t present the best image of your operation. Instead, you should get in touch with experienced web designers who have a track record of success. Let them know what you hope to achieve from the online portal, and then ask them to provide you with a quote for the work. In most instances, you’re going to pay a few thousand dollars for their services. However, having a professional website should also help you to create profit. So, you should see the spending as an investment.
Not paying for website SEO
Having a first-class website is all well and good, but it isn’t going to assist your operation if consumers don’t know it exists. Considering that, it’s vital you ensure that the domain appears within the correct results when people search for relevant terms using Google. Sure, you could spend a month researching the process and tailoring the content on your site for optimisation purposes. However, you’re never going to beat the competition because rival firms will employ the services of a respected SEO company. You should aim to follow in their footsteps if you want to ensure your website gets as much relevant traffic as possible. The process might involve:
- Adjusting meta tags
- Publishing creative content with backlinks
- Making your website content keyword rich
For the best deals on SEO services, you just need to shop around and obtain multiple quotes. You can then use those figures to negotiate a fair price for the assistance.
Not offering secure payment methods
People like to pay for their purchases using a range of different payment solutions these days. It’s critical that you implement them into your website if you want the best results from your marketing efforts. You might manage to drive lots of traffic, but that isn’t much use if those people don’t convert into customers. Most consumers now understand how to spot a secure payment method. So, if they don’t see that little padlock in the corner of their address bar, those folks won’t enter their bank details. For that reason, you need to speak to your developers and ensure you incorporate security into the payment process. You will also need to accept money via:
- Credit cards
- Debit cards
Those are the most frequently-used online payment methods at the moment. However, things change all the time, and so you need to keep your finger on the pulse.
Not getting media attention
The local and national newspapers are excellent places to promote your company without having to pay any money. You just have to think of something exciting or newsworthy to catch the attention of those reporters. Maybe you discover your workplace is haunted and you have a resident ghost? That’s always a popular choice at this time of the year. You could even develop a new product that will benefit humanity. That’s sure to get some attention in the right places. Alternatively, you could work hard to develop a publicity stunt the news media will struggle to ignore. For inspiration, just:
- Look at successful publicity stunts online
- Get in touch with viral marketing specialists
The best thing about getting media attention is that it tends to spread and grow in size without entrepreneurs having to work too hard. If you create the right story, you only need to attract the attention of a single journalist in most instances. The other newspapers will pick up on the story over the following days if it’s interesting enough for their readers.
Not building mailing lists
Email marketing is a crucial tool in your arsenal, and so you need to start building mailing lists as soon as possible. The easiest way to do that involves asking customers to enter their details when paying for purchases. You can then design a system that automatically adds those email addresses to your database. You then need to send a single promotional message every week that highlights your latest deals and offers. It’s also sensible to mention any company news or new releases. Ensure you include links to everything you promote, and you should notice a spike in traffic during the hours following the delivery of your emails.
Not offering discount codes and promotions
Consumers love saving money or getting something for free. With that in mind, those who want the best outcomes from their marketing efforts should think about using discount codes and coupons. Not only does that send traffic in your direction from money-saving sites, but it should also help to increase the size of your customer base. Just add a box to your checkout process that allows the customer to enter codes and grab themselves a bargain. You don’t ever have to lose any potential profits if you’re smart. Just increase the price of an item the week before you plan to offer a discounted rate as a promotion. Consumers won’t know the difference, but they will believe they’re saving lots of money.
Not using trade shows to your advantage
Trade shows and exhibitions are some of the best places to network with potential clients and promote your goods and services to new customers. If you don’t attend suitable events at the moment, you’re missing a trick. Just search online for the trade shows organised throughout your industry. You can then get in touch with the organisers and ask about hiring a space for the day. Pay professional designers and printers to create a display stand that is going to turn heads and get attention. That way, a lot of people should stop for a chat as they pass your stall. Also, be sure to take printed promotional materials to hand out those attendees who don’t have enough time for a conversation.
If you’re making any of the promotional mistakes mentioned in this article, then you need to go back to the drawing board as soon as possible. Those who plan to launch a new operation during the next few months can use this advice to ensure they don’t make any schoolboy errors. Just bear in mind that it’s possible to avoid all these issues and much more if you employ the services of a dedicated marketing company to deal with all aspects of advertising. Of course, some entrepreneurs don’t want to do that, and so this post should ensure they don’t waste time and money. Good luck!
*This is a contributed post