Digital Marketing Mistakes SMBs Make

John Wanamaker, one of the forefathers of modern business, once said that although he knows that half the money he spends on marketing goes to waste, he can never know which half. While this statement perfectly describes the situation in marketing of his time, such a claim is no longer completely accurate.

First of all, with modern analytics tools, one can get a much better insight into the distribution of their marketing budget and the kind of ROI each of the methods used brings. Furthermore, while giants of the industry (like Wanamaker was) can afford to waste money on marketing, an SMB owner needs to know that every single dollar invested went into the right place. This being said, here are four most common digital marketing mistakes, along with a few tips on how to avoid them.

  1. Failing to optimize for mobile
    Regardless of how we proceed, in 2017, failing to optimize your digital marketing efforts for mobile users is definitely the greatest error you can possibly make. You see, a few months ago, Android officially dethroned Windows as the most popular web-browsing OS, therefore marking the end of the desktop era. What this means for digital marketing is that marketers of today need to turn towards mobile-friendly formats (like videos and infographics) and make both their websites and their content more touch-friendly.Mobile responsiveness is another thing that deserves your full and undivided attention.
  2. Ignoring traditional marketing methods
    Another common mistake is completely disregarding the traditional marketing methods. You see, digital and traditional are not the opposite ends of the same spectrum; in fact, these two aspects can give by far the best results when used in synergy. For instance, a small local business from Victoria can contact a lead generation company in Australia in order to learn how they can boost their traffic through telemarketing. Moreover, promotional products such as hats and T-shirts, or means like billboards and banners can give your digital marketing efforts quite a boost.
  3. Not testing enough
    The next great mistake most digital marketers make is not testing enough, which is completely unacceptable in this day and age. Sure, no one expects you to conduct an elaborate market analysis every single day, but you could at least go on with a simple A/B test in order to see what yields the best results. A perfect example of how effective this can be isa test in which it was determined that a red CTA (call-to-action) button yields 21 percent higher CTR (click-through-rate) than its green counterpart. Who knows what kind of valuable information you can uncover by doing some testing on your own.
  4. Focusing on ‘big marketing’ too early on
    While it is true that it is possible to get a great ROI with a modest marketing budget, it would be absurd to claim that expensive means ineffective. Sure, allocating a huge amount of money in order to promote your business online must give you great results but this might leave you without resources for some other methods you might have had in mind. This opens up things for a debate, seeing how you have a potential of achieving great results with a single triumphant move, while it also means putting all your eggs in a single basket. In other words, it is too big of a risk for you so early in the process and might end your digital marketing campaign before it even takes off.
  5. Speaking through the wrong channels
    One of the first tasks you will have in your digital marketing campaign is identifying your target demographic. Still, knowing who you should focus on is not the only question you need answered. You should also find the most appropriate channels to reach them through, which is not nearly as difficult as it may seem. You see, each demographic has their own network of choice. For instance, Pinterest has an incredible reach amongst the female populace, Snapchat has the most youthful user base, while LinkedIn has the highest adoption amongst highly educated and high-income users. Needless to say, finding the right channel can drastically improve your chance of making a successful conversion.
  6. Ignoring keyword research
    Finally, you need to keep one thing in mind – no matter how good you are at what you do or how well you know your market, you are still one person. This means that the most logical keywords or those that seem the most effective to you aren’t necessarily going to be the best ones for your business. In order to avoid this mistake, it would be for the best to simply do this by the book. Luckily, there are a lot of great tools out there, which can help you find keywords with low competition and a high average monthly search.

Even though avoiding these four mistakes alone isn’t enough to ensure the success of your digital marketing campaign, sometimes it is all it takes to raise you above your closest competitors. Furthermore, while these tips may seem pretty straightforward, even obvious, you would be surprised just how many small businesses tend to overlook them at one point or another. This being said, they say that the first step in avoiding a trap lies in knowing there is one.

Dan Radak is a marketing professional with eleven years of experience. He is a coauthor on several websites and regular contributor to BizzMark Blog. Currently, he is working with a number of companies in the field of digital marketing, closely collaborating with a couple of e-commerce companies.

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