Once you start getting into the world of marketing, you will keep hearing phrases like there is no such thing as bad publicity or, worse yet, that inactivity is, somehow, the only thing that hurts your marketing efforts. The problem with this idea is that it completely neglects the fact that a bad course of action can lead to a decline in your online popularity. In other words, at times, it will feel as if things were better before you embarked on your campaign.
Furthermore, inexperienced marketers usually aren’t fully aware of the ROI they can receive from various marketing techniques. This is particularly troublesome when they have a very tight marketing budget, which can lead to real problems if they spend it all in one place (a wrong one, to make matters even worse). In order to avoid making these mistakes you first need to know what some of the major ones are. With this in mind, here are the top five marketing mistakes that most SMBs would do well to avoid.
Not having a website
Even though this statistic may be too hard to believe, about 50 percent of all small businesses don’t have a website. Even more impressive is the claim by 41 percent of them that they don’t actually need one to begin with, which is quite questionable, to say the least. Their lack of understanding of all the ways in which having a website helps their business or their belief that such a project isn’t cost-effective enough is just the tip of the iceberg. The real reason behind this is the fact that they lack the technical knowledge of the logistics behind making a website and, therefore, overestimate its difficulty.
Some business owners and marketers have a hard time realizing a simple fact, which is that they can’t just push for the hard-sell techniques of their products online. Think about it, why would anyone (apart from your regular customers) follow a Facebook page that spends 100 percent of their time talking about their products or services? In order to offer some value to your audience, you need to maintain at least an 80/20 ratio, where 80 percent of the time you offer valuable content while promoting your business 20 percent of the time. In this way, both you and your audience are gaining something from this connection.
Believing products sell themselves
First of all, while it is true that the law of supply and demand has a way of being self-maintaining, in the modern age, people are used to being served offers on a platter. This means that no matter how necessary or unique your offer is; you still need to invest quite a bit of your resources in order to promote it. Just take a look at a startup like Uber. No matter how revolutionary their business model is, they are investing quite a bit of time, effort and resources into their marketing. In fact, no matter how good of a business idea they had, without the marketing to follow up, they would never have made the breakthrough.
Irregularly posting content
Another important idea you need to keep in mind is that, no matter how good your content is, if you don’t post it regularly, you are bound to be forgotten even by some of your die-hard fans. Sure, quality always comes first but quantity isn’t something you can afford to outright dismiss either. Because of this, you might want to consider getting in touch with some talented guest bloggers or even having a few regular contributors on your side.
Declaring traditional techniques obsolete
Finally, one of the most fatal and ridiculous mistakes out there is believing that the rise of digital marketing made some of the traditional techniques obsolete. First of all, no email or conference call will ever have the personal and emotional strength of a face-to-face meeting or a word of mouth recommendation.
Furthermore, every survey out there clearly shows that telemarketing is still alive and kicking. Finally, we already talked about generating some value for your audience, and offering giveaways of promotional materials like custom stress balls with the logo of your company on it is one of the best ways to pull this off as effortlessly as possible.
At the end of the day, marketing mistakes that SMBs make are far too numerous to fit any list. These five, however, are some of the major culprits which make marketing campaigns backfire or fail to deliver on their expected ROI. Just by avoiding them, you can make your marketing efforts overall much safer and more cost-effective. A major corporation may have a bit more maneuvering space and can, therefore, afford to make a mistake or two. Needless to say, in a world where 9 out of 10 small businesses fail within the first five years, you won’t have such a luxury.