I love working in the online space. I find it to be fascinating and exciting and ever-changing. Mostly I love it because I think it’s help to level the playing field for businesses. Thanks to the internet, almost anyone can start a business these days and be successful and anyone with an existing business can leverage the internet to reach more people. But I see a lot of people getting online marketing wrong and honestly, there have been a lot of times I’ve gotten online marketing wrong. If you really want to get it right, to attract clients and generate leads online, make sure you’re not making one of these 10 mistakes in your online marketing
- Not being clear on your goals
The first thing I ask potential clients during consultations is “Why do you want help with your marketing?” More often than not, they don’t know what they’re looking for online. Sometimes they are just online because everyone else is and they know they should be too. When you don’t know what you’re doing somewhere or why you’re doing, you end up just trying anything. Which is a waste of time and money. The clearer and more specific you are on your goals, the better your marketing will be.
2. Paying attention to the trends instead of your audience
There are a lot of cool marketing trends out there today. Snapchat, live streaming, you name it and someone has thought of it and used it as a marketing tool. But if you’re hopping on platforms because you read somewhere that it’s the next best thing, you’re making a mistake. Just because something is trendy, does not mean it will be trendy with your audience. You need to know your audience and that they want and need from you and your industry. Find out how you audience interacts with business online. Find out how they like to receive information. Find out where they hang out online and build your marketing strategy around them.
3. Trying to be everywhere all at once
If you listen to your audience, you will not waste time on places you shouldn’t be. Here’s the deal: there are a lot of platforms and ways to attract customers online. You cannot and should not be on them all. It’s a waste of time and energy to try and you’ll end up burning yourself out. My best tip to new businesses or businesses just starting out online is to find one place where they can build their audience and then grow from there. If your customers are readers, then build your blog. If you have a younger audience, focus on Instagram. Build up in one place and succeed there before moving on to the next.
4. Forgetting about your brand
Branding is incredibly important online. You want to make sure you share visuals that match your brand. You want people to instantly recognize your company online. For instance, Hubspot has adopted orange as their color and they do an amazing job branding their graphics with that orange so you know it’s their content without having to think about it.
5. Losing your voice
Voice is another part of branding but it’s so important that I wanted to list it separately. What is the tone and voice of your business? Are you cute and silly? Are you witty and sarcastic? Are you funny? Are you inspirational? What is the tone and voice of your business? Look at your values, your unique selling points and the culture at your company and allow that to inform your voice. There are a lot of voices online. The best to stand out with yours is to figure out what it is and stick with it.
6. Sharing for no reason
There is so much noise on the internet. Don’t add to it. When you share, share for a reason. Again, this goes back to point #1 about knowing your goals. Content usually does one of four things online: educates, informs, inspires or entertains. If your content is not doing any of that, then ask yourself: why are you posting it? Good content is gold online. Don’t just post because you feel like you have to. Pay attention to what you are posting.
7. Not measuring what you’re doing
This is surprisingly a big problem for businesses online. They have no idea what’s working because they are not measuring. You have to measure your online efforts. Measure your traffic, measure your social posts, your email followers, your link clicks. If you don’t then you will never know what’s working and what’s not. Do it weekly or monthly but either way, measurement is absolutely key.
8. Measuring the wrong things
Again this is a mistake that’s easy to make and it really stems from not following the tips above. You might be measuring the wrong things. For instance, let’s say you have a huge Instagram following and you’ve been measuring how big it’s been growing but you have no idea if its leading to sales. Is your marketing a success? That depends on what your goals were. If your goals are brand awareness, then yes! But if your goals are sales, you’ve been measuring the wrong thing. Know your goals, know your audience and measure for both.
9. Not asking for the sale
It’s surprising to me how many service based businesses spend so much time creating amazing content and building up followers but never ask for the sale. You can sell online and you can sell without feeling pushy or sleazy. But you do need to make an offer. Mix in great content (see point #6) more than sales and you won’t turn your audience off.
10. Expecting it all to work overnight
Finally the biggest and most fatal mistake I see businesses making online. They think it’s going to happen overnight and when it doesn’t, they give up. They post consistently for a month and then stop because they don’t think it’s working. Consistency is key for marketing. You usually need 30-60 days to see if a marketing tactic is working. You have to commit, measure and adjust as needed. Just because it’s not working right away, does not mean it is not working at all. Instead of giving up completely, look at the part of the tactic that did work. Maybe you’re getting a lot of readers to your blog but no one is opting into your email list. The problem may not be the blog but the call to action or the offer for your email list. So instead of stopping blogging all together, tweak your offer or edit your call to action to something with more urgency. This is only going to improve your marketing and give you better results down the road
Did I miss a marketing mistake? Having trouble with one of these mistakes and want to know how to fix it? Let me know in the comments!