5 Basic Marketing Mistakes (that you really DON’T want to make)
A solid digital marketing strategy – it’s the heart and soul of any successful modern business. It’s how you get your message out. It’s what brings in potential customers. It’s ultimately what helps your business grow.
The tools and opportunities that the online world offers the world of marketing are enormous – meaning that using it wisely is KEY. Yet for some reason, so many businesses out there are still slipping up on a handful of basic digital marketing no-no’s!
So, we’ve compiled a list of things we see all the time, what we think are the top 5 mistakes made in the digital marketing world today. Let us share these common mistakes along with the natural solutions, so you hopefully don’t end up making any of them yourself!
MISTAKE #1: No Structured Tone
Your tone is essentially your business’ flavour. It’s the taste you will leave in the mouth of everyone who sees your brand messaging.
Sounds simple, yet we see businesses fail to do this and end up leaving their audience confused about who they are.
How you portray your business through online platforms will create an image of your company to your audience. This is how they will perceive you. Do you want a corporate attitude? Do you want a light, semi-humorous vibe? That is up to you to decide for the benefit of your company.
Every business needs a clear and structured campaign tone, across all platforms. Take some time to think about what you want your “flavour” to be. This includes the character, language and purpose that will stick along with your brand name. It is important that your voice and the reputation you are creating across all mediums accurately reflect the principles of your company.
This should really be step 1 in content creation. You want what you post on all channels to be uniform and have a clear tone. This can mean the style of writing, colours used, type font chosen. It needs to be consistent.
Take Coca-Cola, a company who has done things so right. Their whole brand message is about positivity, happiness and the joy that their products provide. In everything they do, on every single platform, Coca-Cola sticks to a consistent voice. Even despite how long as they’ve been around, they’ve never strayed far from their voice and style guide. And look, they have totally nailed it! We all know the brand message and image that Coca-Cola tries to present, and that’s because they’ve always kept a structured tone.
It’s one of the most basic rules in the book – the key to marketing success is to have an organized tone and voice for your brand. Give your business a personality and you’ll be set for success.
MISTAKE #2: Not Listening to Your Target Audience
One of the most basic mistakes is when businesses or marketers don’t take the time to actually understand their audience, or skip the crucial step of targeting them appropriately. Two very important steps that go hand in hand.
You may have the most terrific content or visuals – but you have to know how to get it to your audience, and at the correct place and time.
The first step is to know how your specific audience consumes media and how different media types work with your sales and brand objectives.
How can you do this? First-hand research! Listen to them. Work with them. Watch the times of days they are visibly available and you’ll soon learn the best way to get to them.
Things to think about: Will your target audience be on Snapchat or Twitter? No? Then stick to the two biggest channels, Facebook or Instagram, which will allow you to cater to their needs. Does your IT Support Company really need an Instagram account, or could you best target your audience on Facebook? That’s what you need to decide.
To get a deeper understanding, check out our article on Understanding Your Audience for more.
MISTAKE #3: Forgetting Mobile
We all know mobile has become dominant. Gone are the days of consumers wanting to deal with a pinch-and-zoom page on the go.
Did you know if a website is too difficult to maneuver or doesn’t load within 3 seconds, half of all visitors will give up? And according to Sensis’ 2017 Social Media Report, 81% of Aussies prefer using their device to access social media over a laptop or desktop. If these aren’t all massive signs that optimizing for mobile is not just recommended but should actually come first, I don’t know what is…
If you don’t want to get left behind in the dust, every single business owner nowadays needs to be optimising their digital strategy for mobile. This means their content postings, their SEO, their e-newsletters, their website design – everything. It’s so essential. This can’t be one of those things left in the “wouldn’t that be nice?” pile – it needs to be on the top of your “URGENT” pile.
You don’t want to have a beautiful website on a desktop screen, but when someone goes to open it on their smartphone they are left to pinch, zoom in and drag around just to find what they are looking for – because let’s be honest, they are likely to pass. That is why this is creating a website that is aesthetically pleasing and easily accessible on both mobile and desktop is so important. When it comes to designing your web pages and e-newsletters, prioritize planning your layout for mobile equally to the desktop view. Become a pro at using mobile view creation tools.
Make sure every offer or promo you have currently available is easily accessible on mobile sites. Think about when people probably open offers? When they are twiddling their thumbs on the train home (scrolling their social feeds). If you don’t make these offers available on mobile, you risk losing heaps of user engagement (and conversions into sales)!
Optimising your website for voice search is a whole other story, that we will get to at a later date. But for now, just think about those times when you ask Siri, “What is SEO”. Websites that have optimised their web pages by putting these questions directly into their copy are the ones that are going to be found.
And lastly, don’t forget that Google just generally loves mobile-friendly websites! Sites that are mobile optimised are actually automatically granted higher rankings in Google Searches.
MISTAKE #4: Not Using Social (Correctly, or AT ALL)
We get it, social media is a world of its own. It’s complex, tricky, and there are so many platforms nowadays that it can be a bit overwhelming for the non-tech wizards out there. BUT, this doesn’t mean you should let it slip onto the back burner. So many businesses are shockingly still not using social media, or some, on the other hand, have profiles but they simply aren’t using them fittingly.
Well, if your business doesn’t yet have at least one social media page, you know what your first step is….
Next, use it!!
Engage. Engage. Engage. We cannot stress this enough. Viewers don’t want to see you posting like crazy about your business, but completely ghosting every comment ever made and never taking the time to reply. Consumers are more likely to trust your brand if it interacts with its customers and if it regularly updates its social media. So take the time, it shows there really are real people behind the name. Responding to comments will create a community, and form a trust with your audience. Encourage conversation and share information with your audience – because sharing is caring after all.
You should treat your social like your baby, and always be present with it.
This is probably a good time to point out that you need to be sure to not spread yourself too thin. By this, we mean that there actually is such a thing as taking on too many different platforms! If you present your business on too many social media channels and cannot possibly keep up with them all, it can backfire. We suggest picking a few core successful ones with the most viewership and putting your efforts into those. Rather than only doing a sub-par content job on multiple platforms, pick a few social networks where you’ll likely find your target audience and blow them away, keeping them engaged 100% of the time.
So in summary, get on social media and stay active. It’s okay if you can’t do this yourself – that’s what social media marketers are for (cough-cough).
MISTAKE #5: Chasing Competitors
There’s a lot of competition out there, especially in the age of the Internet. It’s natural to see what the other guys are doing well and want to follow suit. However, you want to go against the grain, not with it. If you simply follow your competitors every move, your vision will be narrowed. You want to stand out from the competition.
While a little competitor spying is normal and totally okay, don’t rely on it.
You certainly do want to research. Scan the market and find out what your competitors are doing that works. Also, find where they are lacking and where they are most vulnerable. From there, you can challenge and build your own strategy.
So yes, analyse your competition, study them. But don’t chase – of course you need to know what you are up against since you are trying to convince your audience to choose your business, over someone else’s. But it is not about just claiming you’ll be “better”. You have to be different.
Trust that your audience will follow you, and continue to stay one step ahead of the competition by thinking outside of the box. You have to think about everything that has been done before and do something different. Create your own original and valuable content and focus on your audience and your needs.
Bottom line: don’t waste your time focusing on your competition. Push yourself and your business to think outside the box and try something new. Be inventive.
While some of these mistakes we’ve talked about may seem a bit rookie to some, everyone makes mistakes. And we get it, digital marketing can be overwhelming and intimidating, especially to the non-marketer. Just remember, building your brand and your digital strategy is a process – it doesn’t happen overnight.
Hopefully, after reading this, we’ve opened your eyes to a few common ways to make sure you’re not making these digital marketing mistakes yourself.
And hey – if this all sounds a bit gibberish to you, don’t hesitate to get in touch – that’s what we’re here for! Shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us today at 1300 841 244.