If you’ve been in business for a long time, you understand that the field is very different today from what it was just several years ago. Given the immense popularity of the Internet, modern campaigns have little in common with ones that were run in the past. Today, marketers’ target audience is likely to consist of tech-savvy, connected consumers, so campaigns done on TV and in magazines just aren’t as effective as they once were. Pay-per-click advertisements and business blogs have become popular and valuable in many target audiences.
Whether or not they’re comfortable with online marketing, businesses commonly make mistakes when developing campaigns for their products. Here are a few of the more common errors companies make when marketing.
Coming Across as an SEO Spammer
Keywords and metadata are important, but not if they’re all you focus on. You aren’t doing yourself any favors if you have a lot of great keywords in your copy, but it reads awkwardly or feels contrived. With Google’s latest algorithm, the Internet is more about the user experience than anything else. The confessions of social marketers say enough. It’s all about “comply or die.” If your strategies compromise quality you could end up at the bottom of the search results. Social signals, authorship, inbound marketing, and clean navigation are all vital areas for SEO in 2014.
Failing to Identify and Engage Your Target Audience
Most businesses focus on their project more than anything else. From developing an idea to testing and tweaking it, creating a great product often absorbs a great deal of businesses’ time. In many ways, this makes a lot of sense, as without a good product you don’t have anything to sell. However, by focusing mostly on the product you risk neglecting the actual customers.
A number of businesses spend so much time focusing on their product that they don’t really find out who the ideal audience for their product will be. It’s like trying to catch a mouse without setting up proper mice control. The audience (mice in this case) will just continue roaming freely and we’ll never capture its attention. If you want to be an effective marketer, it’s imperative that you find out not only who will use the product but also how it will help them. The benefits are the bait.
Even when they have identified their target audience, many companies don’t give them compelling enough reasons to buy the product. Some assume that their product is so good that it will sell itself, which is optimistic at best. Even if your product is the best, customers won’t know that unless you convince them to buy it.
Not Listening to Your Customers
Even when businesses do identify the target audience for the product, they sometimes don’t listen to what the customers have to say. Really, listening to customer feedback should be a no-brainer — if you can make your campaign more appealing to customers, you’ll likely have more sales.
Often, businesses make the mistake of listening to technology more than actual people. They rely almost solely on market research and demographic data and spend little time interacting with customers. As a result, the marketing messages they come up with do not resonate with customers.
Being Too Verbose
No one likes a campaign that goes on and on about the various reasons consumers should buy your product. Even if there are 50 reasons why customers should buy your product, listing them all in an ad will do little to help sell the product. You should be able to deliver your message in a few dozen words total. If it’s any longer than this, customers will lose interest. The first few words are the most important — they’re your best opportunity for attracting customers’ attention.
Paying Too Little Attention to Branding
Some people assume that because their products are so great, having a well-developed brand isn’t necessary. In reality, though, developing a brand will always help you sell your products, even if they’re something people will always need like food or toilet paper. A brand like Saffire demonstrates primary messages by stressing vapor and flavors. This is pretty basic psychological marketing; we see a brand name and immediately associate items with it (such as vapor and flavors). In the end, not only your product needs to be good. Branding, marketing, and a customer-centered approach may be just as important!
It’s often most effective to develop different branding strategies — one for specific products and one for your business as a whole. There are many different factors involved in creating a successful brand. However, some of the most important things are to be relatable, consistent and authentic.
Avoid making these mistakes in your campaign, and you’ll have no problem with marketing your products to customers.