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Top 3 Common Marketing Mistakes

If you run or own a business, you need to know about marketing. There are a lot of bad marketing campaigns. Here are some common mistakes to avoid.

Advertising v. Marketing
Advertising is not the same as marketing. Advertising is one avenue to market your business, though often costs more than others. Don't limit your marketing to advertisements. One more cost effective alternative is to simply ask several customers about their experience. Specifically, you want to know what things they're dissatisfied with, so that you can improve those areas.

Look before you leap
There is no direct correlation between advertising spending and sales. You can spend every last cent you make on ads, and if they don't have an effective message, you'll just go out of business.

Effective advertising requires the right message, the correct audience, and the proper delivery method. Just like commercials during Saturday morning cartoons were for products targeted to kids, online ads can be directly targeted to specific demographics. Who is your target customer? Where can you reach them? How can you tell if you've reached them?

More money is not always better
Don't take marketing advice from sales people. They have a financial interest in getting you to spend more money. Effective online marketing isn't always expensive. Make decisions based on data and metrics rather than emotionally charges sales pitches.

Marketing is about your customers, not you or your business. It's about improving customers' experiences when doing business with your company.

Put systems into place to ensure consistent, excellent products and services. The largest franchises in the world are successful because they developed systems that any franchise owner can follow.

Your marketing is the public face of your company. How your business is perceived by customers directly affects your bottom line. It includes everything from the way employees greet customers, to your invoices and how employees deal with customer complaints.

There is a lot more to marketing than advertising. Establish effective, efficient systems that enable your employees to give customers the best and most consistent experience possible. Happy customers are repeat customers and tell their friends and colleagues. Word of mouth virtually always trumps an advertisement.

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