Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
Marketing can be a tricky balance. It’s not just about finding great ideas, but making them work for a target audience appropriately and meaningfully. It also comprises a number of parts, or “tools,” and wielding the right ones can be the difference between having people shrug at marketing efforts or really enjoy the show.
Here are some pitfalls to avoid in the process.
1. Immature Lead Nurturing
When it comes to lead nurturing, there are actually many ways to go wrong, and one of the biggest is not keeping leads’ interests in mind as you nurture them. When building a campaign to target a specific audience and get its attention, you must remember who they are and what they care about.
For example, if selling high-end sports cars, your message should be tailored to those who love luxury and speed. If a product is more affordable but still high quality, then you might want to focus on selling the affordability aspect rather than the quality exclusively.
2. Lack of Analytics
When it comes to marketing, you can’t just wing it: You need to know what kind of content is performing best, your audience and how you can reach them in the future. This is where analytics come into play. You need to know what’s working and what isn’t so that you can make adjustments if necessary.
If you don’t have an analytics program in place, it will be harder to grow because no clear indicators will show what needs improvement or expansion.
10 Questions to Ask When Collecting Customer Data
3. Inconsistent Brand Messaging
Consistency is the cornerstone of a strong brand. If you don’t have it in your messaging, you will not be able to build the level of trust that leads to loyalty and repeat customers.
Think about it: If you send out an email with one message and then follow it up with an advertisement on Facebook that contradicts that email, how is anyone supposed to know who you are? The bottom line is that if you want your company’s brand to resonate, ensure that its content is consistent across all channels.
4. Not Enough Compelling Content
Content that speaks to an audience and makes them feel like they want to click through and learn more is beyond essential. And it’s not enough to generate examples that you think is interesting, but to see content through customers’ eyes — and if you don’t know who those customers are, then there’s some work to do.
It’s much harder to innovate on that front if you don’t have a creative brief, which is essentially a road map for a brand’s social media strategy, so make sure you have a compelling one before jumping into any projects.
To Create Truly Compelling Content Marketing, Make It a Team Activity
5. Selling Instead of Solving
This is one of the biggest problems that can haunt a company, but it’s also one of the easiest to avoid. When selling alone, you’re focused on persuading people to buy. When you’re solving a problem, however, you’re focused on meeting people’s needs and helping them achieve goals.
The difference between these actions is huge: When merely selling something, the focus is on yourself and the product; you want to get someone to buy ASAP. But when you’re also solving a problem (including helping people reach goals), the emphasis is on both selling and keeping them coming back — loving what you do for them so much that they want more. You want raving fans who tell their friends, who might in turn buy your product/service.
6. The Marketing Department is Siloed
When a department is siloed, it doesn’t work collaboratively with other departments. This can be problematic because the marketing team needs to have a good understanding of what other company sectors are working on in order to effectively do its job. For example, if a company has an app that’s going to be released soon and the sales department is about to launch a new product line for its target customer base, it’s vital to make sure that the marketing team knows about it so that they can incorporate it into messaging.
How to Break Down Silos in Your Company by Building Lanes
You can be as innovative, clever and forward-thinking as you like, but if marketing isn’t working, these efforts will amount to nothing. And it’s tempting to examine the missteps above and think you’ll never fall into such poor decision-making, but the truth is that we all have our moments. The key is to learn from them and never make the same mistake twice.
Read the full article here