While many people think of sales as the backbone of any organization, the truth is that your sales will suffer if your marketing is not up to par.
Creating and launching a successful marketing campaign can be one of the most exciting activities for any business.
It has the major advantage of generating leads that can then be sent through the sales funnel.
But let’s not overlook the fact that not all marketing campaigns will be successful.
The main reason for most marketing failures is some common and understandable mistakes.
While businesses make many mistakes during their marketing campaigns, these are the major four that can make or break your lead generation goals.
Not linking your marketing to a product category
We’ve all come across advertisements that do a terrific job at mentioning the business name and the brand but do not mention the product categories they are advertising.
Remember that customers can see a product but will not be sure how it will help solve their problems.
It doesn’t matter how good your advertisement is if customers cannot understand the product category.
They may recall your business name but will not think about your products when they have a problem that they need to solve.
To ensure that while creating your marketing campaigns, you let customers know several times during your campaign which category the product(s) fall into.
Don’t forget this!
Forgetting to use vanity metrics
How many likes did your last post on Instagram get?
How many reposts did your last Facebook ad get?
How many retweets did your last Twitter post garner?
You should have these numbers off the top of your head.
They are called vanity metrics.
But why should you know all these?
Well, you can mention them in your marketing campaigns to show how fantastic your business is and how well it is performing in the social space - There is nothing better for your business than social proof.
However, one thing to always note is that you should not focus your marketing resources on improving your vanity metrics, as this is a sure-fire way to expend your limited resources on an activity that will not have a huge influence on your overall marketing campaign.
Failing to Do A/B Testing
Many businesses, even after setting up their marketing campaigns, fail to do A/B testing.
But if you want to take your marketing to the next level, you will need to find out what works and what doesn’t work. You can achieve this through a process called A/B testing.
While the process might sound complicated, it is pretty simple. For instance, your campaign may have two main subject lines which would be tailored to different sections of the market.
One of the subject lines, let’s call it A, had a 70% open rate, and the other B had a 30% open rate.
Then it would make sense to go with subject line A and forego B.
With A/B testing, also called ‘split testing’, you can determine what works better and focus on that!
Choosing the wrong audience
This is one mistake that affects plenty of businesses. It doesn’t pay in the long run to send your marketing to everyone.
You will only spend a considerable amount of your resources in marketing for a low rate of return.
You must understand where your customers are and narrow them down to those who find your type of products useful.
Having identified this audience, you can then direct your marketing campaigns to them.
While there are many mistakes that marketers tend to make, these four are the most common and most significant ones.
By understanding your target audience, performing A/B testing, and linking your brand to your product category, you can create an effective and efficient marketing campaign that will help generate leads for your business.
And so… Are you ready to scale your business to the next level??
Everyone’s prone to blunders…
That includes even the world-class multinational brands that we believe can never ever be off the mark.
Well, mistakes in general are a sign of growth but marketing mistakes have a different meaning altogether.
The less they happen the better because one ill-conceived ad and everyone’s on your case.
Boycotts, media trials, SM trends… you know all that.
So, marketing your business in this vigilant, politically correct society where choice is so open is a REAL tough job.
Many of the world’s leading brands have failed in this job over the years.
Let’s have a look at SIX global brands that made embarrassing marketing goofs that still haunt their legacy today.
The one BIG blunder that this giant of a soft drink maker has committed so far was the launch of ‘New Coke’ back in 1985.
It was such a bad idea that it cost Coca-Cola millions of dollars in loss.
The thing is that back in the 80s the cold war between Coca-Cola and its arch-rival Pepsi was at an all-time high.
So, Coke fearing it would lose sufficient ground to Pepsi launched a new more sugary and diluted form of Coca-Cola drink called New Coke.
The fans hated it, and within three months the classic version was back in stores.
In 2017 McDonald’s came under attack for its exploitative kind of TV advert.
It basically followed a bereaved young boy talking with his mom about his deceased dad.
The mother shares what his father’s like and says the filet-o-fish sandwiches from McDonald’s (which the boy is eating now) were his dad’s favorite too.
From that the boy gets reassured of his choice of McDonald’s.
The ad was run in the UK and got a lot of heat on social media, being referred to as emotional exploitation.
It was pulled down within a week!
3) Calvin Klein
Calvin Klein, one of the finest clothing brands, made a whole lot of people angry with its ads back in 1999.
The ads were meant for children underwear.
The way everything was portrayed in those ads was too sleazy, inappropriate and very close nudity.
Parents absolutely HATED the idea and within 24 hours the ads were removed.
Two bombs went off in the annual Boston Marathon back in 2013.
Following this tragedy, Adidas, as perfect as the name may sound, turned out to be NOT so perfect after all.
Adidas sent an email to all their subscribers after the bombings congratulating them that they ‘survived’ the Boston Marathon…
So dumb of them, right?
Soon, Adidas realized how insensitive and thoughtless it was to send those congratulatory emails.
So, they sent out an apology which was very well received by the fans.
Vodafone, a leading mobile telecommunications brand, took a massive blow on its repute when in 2011 they released the infamous ‘Arab Spring ad.’
The ad showed how Vodafone had inspired the Egyptians to stand up against oppression.
However, the ad overlooked the struggle of those who bore the oppression and fought for their freedom.
Also, the ad was seen as unnecessary bragging on Vodafone’s part.
6) La Redoute
A high-end French fashion brand, La Redoute, got a lot of negative publicity when an advert of their children’s collection went online.
The ad suffered criticism. Why?
Because the ad was a photo of children having fun at the beach with a NAKED man in the background.
The naked man was supposed to be cropped out but once the picture went online it was too late.
The ad was criticized sure, but it became an internet sensation too, with people tossing the naked man in to famous photos.
And, that pretty much explains why they say, ‘there’s no such thing as bad publicity.’
The Covid 19 pandemic has affected all factions of our society. Livelihoods changed as people had to deal with job loss.
Economies and businesses were especially hard hit. For many, the long-awaited vaccinations are to look forward to as things slowly start going back to normal.
The majority of brick-and-mortar businesses have seen an especially difficult time with the pandemic. They have had to devise new ways to re-engage with customers.
One trend that seems to gain traction is video marketing. According to experts, it is expected to comprise up to 82% of all marketing strategies by 2022.
Don’t be left out. Let’s discover how you can make use of video marketing strategies to grab customer attention.
1. Practice flexibility
Creating a well-thought-out marketing plan is essential. Businesses can stay on track of their goal accomplishment without much deviation. It keeps the action of businesses disciplined.
However, it is critical to also add flexibility to your video marketing campaigns. You can do this by speaking a language that customers can relate to.
For instance, it wouldn’t be clever to speak about collecting items and physically making orders during the lockdown.
Instead, a better strategy would be to show how customers can get what they want to form the comforts of their home.
2. Be empathetic
Before the pandemic, it was expected for marketing strategies to guide customers through the sales funnel and eventually through the checkout process.
However, businesses have realized that the products people thought they needed took a back seat as more people switched to buying important stuff.
Through video, the clever businesses know to offer messages of consolation and empathy. It shows customers that the business cares about them and their wellbeing and is not just interested in selling their products.
As a result, customers feel more attached to the business and are more likely to become loyal clientele.
3. Join the community against injustice
In your video marketing, few things can get your brand noticed quite like a stance on social injustice.
While many businesses choose to look the other way on issues such as gender inequality, and police brutality, for instance, your business can set itself apart by taking a stance against them too.
In this way, you are saying to the community that you are seeing what they are going through and that you are with them during their trying times.
This type of video marketing strategy can help solidify your image in the minds of potential clients.
4. Make it mobile-friendly
If there is one thing that seems to stand the test of time especially when considering how quickly things change in the digital world, it is mobile-friendly content.
You must ensure that your video marketing strategy is mobile-friendly. Ever since the pandemic hit, the use of mobile phones has gone up tremendously.
You would miss out on a large chunk of the market if your video marketing failed to be mobile friendly and to cater to the vast majority of online shoppers who purchase their products online.
5. Be more creative with a limited budget
Ever since the pandemic, everyone including businesses had to switch to survival mode. This meant cutting down on spending significantly and making the most of the little they had.
Brands stayed away from expensive TV commercials and focused their resources on more affordable methods of video marketing such as social media advertising.
Many businesses also switched to using mobile phones for their video marketing strategies.
It’s not enough to have your brand ably represented on social media. There are millions of brands already there, but what separates you from the lot is your unique voice that’s also audible enough to come out of the noise.
Your unique voice should be reflected in all your posts, tweets, images, and videos as you go about your routine on social media.
It should also reflect the values your brand holds to high esteem, and its unique selfless culture. And again, it’s rowdy on social media so you have to be audible which starts by amplifying your voice with some of the tips that will be shared in this post.
Get your voice amplified with the tips below.
1. Define your Core Values
You might have done this on your website, but you need to bring it down to social media. Part of being audible through the noise is making a strong statement of who you are and what you stand for as a brand.
This will help your audience identify with you better and pledge their loyalty.
Furthermore, your core values aren’t all about what you stand for or represent, they’re also about what you don’t do and what you can’t be found associating with.
You need to make this known through your social media posts so your followers know you’re the first port of call when it comes to certain areas of business that align with your values.
2. Capitalize on Similar Core Values Shared with Experts
There are experts and thought leaders who share similar values with your brand. Capitalize on them to make your voice louder.
Inject a few of their popular mantras into your posts organically and with hashtags.
Most people love to associate with the big names, and if your brand is saying something similar to what the big names are saying, use that to your advantage.
It makes your voice on social media more credible and soon your followers will begin to associate your brand with class and quality.
Since you speak the same language as some of the leading voices in the industry, they might just perceive your brand as a protege, and you never can tell how much results this will generate for you.
3. Be Selfless
Your audience needs to feel loved by their brand. This love should be reflected daily in every content that you feed them.
Although once in a while you could throw a few selfish accomplishments but make every post about your audience.
Show them how much you care. Let them understand you won’t be in business without them, let them feel that they are the live wire of the business, inflate their ego, make them feel too important, be customer-centric, and your voice will be louder.
4. What you Say and How You Say it are different
Tone matters in the few words you’ll be using to feed your audience in social media posts. What you’re saying isn’t as important as how you’re saying it. Unless it’s a video post, you can be easily misinterpreted.
Your post could be sounding harsh and too strict but the message is still there and won’t be heard.
If you’re telling someone to come to buy what you’re selling, no matter how good the product is, if you’re raising your voice with a sense of pride in your gut, the buyer will pass.
But if you come humbly with some sense of humor or jovial mood, concern, and sincere love to satiate the need of the buyer, you’ll pique their interest.
The same goes for your voice on social media. Some words are a little sensitive than others, some are too rigid and harsh, and you might be hurting your audience.
Choose your words wisely because it doesn’t matter what you’re saying, but how you’re saying it.
5. Be 70% Informal and 30% Formal
By being informal, you relate with your audience like you were their friend from college or around the hood.
Think of your brand as a person and not as a business entity to get a proper hang of how to go about this.
But then you still need to add a dash of formality so they won’t mistake you for a clown.
It’s risky sounding too informal and losing your touch with professionalism. Blend them in a 70:30 ratio and amid the uproar, some people can still hear your voice.
Business isn’t just about transactions, it can lead to meaningful relationships from an online perspective, and you need to integrate that relational aspect into the online process.
Social Media is one of the busiest places online for digital marketing. It’s rowdy and everyone’s voice is up in the air.
You need to be strategic for your voice to be heard and that involves deploying some tactics that can make your voice stand out and be heard across all platforms where you market your products.
Yelp has been around for a long time. It is over two and a half decades old, having been founded in 2004. The platform has done well to connect people to local businesses.
Customers can join a waiting list, make a reservation and purchase their desired goods and services. Let’s discover some interesting Yelp statistics to find out if it’s still relevant in the modern business world.
Yelp vs Google
Okay granted, Google takes the lead when it comes to searing for online reviews. The average star rating on Google is 4.3 compared to Yelp 3.7. The main reason why Google is ahead of Yelp is that most people are on Google and it is extremely simple to use.
To be able to stand out among the competition on Yelp, your business will need a standard rating of more than 4 stars. 4.5-5 can be considered an excellent rating.
Businesses that have a rating of fewer than 4 stars will have a hard time standing out.
What is the number of people on Yelp
Yelp is by no means underperforming with up to 73 million new monthly users on their mobile app. And it doesn’t end there, Yelp boasts over 100 million unique monthly users on their website. With numbers such as these, it is simple to see why it is such a great tool to use for your business.
Who uses Yelp?
The interesting part is that Yelp seems to be popular with customers of different generations and age groups.
That said the largest percentage of Yelp users have a college background who make up over 55%. Up to 21% of users have an undergraduate degree and 19% have no college degree.
What this shows is that those who have a higher college degree are more likely and willing to leave reviews
Yelp rates for impressions
Yelp is by no means, however the best platform for making impressions. They charge $600 per $1000 impressions. This is compared to average online advertising at $60 for a $1000 impression
Yelp brought in over 22 million just in the last quarter of 2020. This is despite the pandemic. The strange thing is that only $4million of that revenue was from transactions.
The largest percent came from the advertising on Yelp. Even while the revenue in the first quarter of 2020 went down to $162 million as a result of the outbreak this stabilized and increased by the end of the year.
Google ads vs Yelp
Google remains to be the most popular platform that businesses can advertise their products. Even so, there is no denying the fact that millions of online shoppers will use Yelp as a great source of buying information.
While the average Google ads cost 2.69 for search, that on yelp will cost $4-$5.
Customers on Yelp
Up to 45% of customers will start by visiting Yelp before making a buying decision. This is compared to 63% of customers who say they will visit Google first then decide if they will make a purchase. Yelp, therefore, comes in the second-best option for buying information. Despite the fierce competition by Google, Yelp is also highly popular.
Trip advisor comes in at number 3 with 30% of customers basing their buying decisions on the platform. Finally, Facebook comes in at 21%.
With the statistics we’ve mentioned above, Yelp is a huge ally in building your business. That said, Yelp is also quite costly when it comes to making advertisements. It is up to you to decide whether Yelp is ideal for your business.
Think about that time you sat down to read an interesting book or listen to a highly engaging podcast. Chances are you were so drawn into it that your brain simply lost all consciousness of your surroundings. Only by hearing a sudden noise or someone bulging into your space and calling your name did you finally snap back into reality.
That’s the power of storytelling. It draws you into this other world and grabs your constant and undivided attention. Imagine if you could use this power in your business marketing campaign to grab the undivided attention of potential customers.
Guess what… you certainly can!
And this is how.
Using storytelling to stir empathy in customers
One way that you can use storytelling in your marketing campaigns is by intending to stir up feelings of empathy in your customers.
It would be improper for any business to even attempt selling anything without first understanding what frustrations and challenges that customers are going through.
Having done this by interviewing the customers themselves, businesses can then create stories that show how using their products helped them deal with their problems and frustrations.
For instance, you can create a video that shows how the customer was frustrated with a certain issue but found a solution in the products that your business offers.
Potential customers watching this will feel empathic and are more likely to trust your brand more. You will solidify your brand in the minds of potential customers and turn them into repeat and loyal clientele.
The aggressive advertising carried out by most businesses has left a damaging effect on customer’s attention span. They hardly take the time to look at an advert for long enough before shifting to the next.
Storytelling offers an excellent way to grab and maintain customer attention. And by doing so, you know that you can influence their buying decisions.
Stories can move the customer’s emotions and by this, you can steer their emotions towards purchasing your business products.
Great stories also mean great content
You can provide stories in your blogs giving your site visitors something interesting and exciting to read about.
One way that you can create loyalty is by providing free content that is also exciting and engaging.
If you are always providing top-quality content and stories, then readers will automatically associate your brand with certain things. When they need these things, it is your business they will think about first.
When people hear an exciting and even inspiring story, it arouses certain emotions in them. As they are reading the story, they are also creating mental images. This means that the story remains etched into their memory.
Marketers can use this to their advantage. Now that they have customers hooked, the customers will think about the brand next time they need a product.
For instance, imagine a story about a woman who lost 30 pounds of body fat in a month. Your first reaction will be wow? If you have been trying to lose weight, then this will arouse curiosity in you as you wonder how you can do that and achieve similar results.
Marketers can then use this connection to sell their products.
One thing is for sure. Storytelling works. It is that one tool that you can always rely upon with your marketing. The reason is that it appeals to the customer’s emotions and urges them towards taking a certain action. This builds trust in the brand and makes it easier to sell products to the customers.
Many site owners want to be more visible to online shoppers than their competitions. For this, they spend a considerable amount of their investment on SEO.
But there is plenty one can do to help rank their site without having to spend too much money.
That is what we are going to look at in our post…how to maximize organic traffic in the most efficient way.
Focus on your readers and not SEO
Very often site owners will optimize for SEO to rank as high as possible on search engines.
However, remember who you are creating content for…your readers. Instead, focus on creating something that the readers will find useful, and naturally, your SEO will improve.
To create content that is helpful to readers, start by creating their bios. This helps you to understand them better and figure out their problems.
Utilize long-tail keywords
Many site owners and bloggers will use the most common keywords for a specific subject. However, the downside to this is that such keywords will have a lot of competition as many competitors are also using them.
This makes it harder for readers to find you.
Using long-tail keywords allows you to rank for a specific topic. They have less competition which makes it easier for readers to find your content.
After all, you want to target your content to individuals who are searching for answers to a specific question.
One of the best ways to gain organic traffic is to blog on a regular. Users can find more information than they can find on the Home Page or About Us page.
One thing that you should be careful about however is creating spammy content. This will have a negative effect and will cause your site to lose rankings.
Create more quality content
Remember what we said about creating blogs that are useful to readers? This point adds to that. You must create more quality content. However, make sure that you never sacrifice quality.
This will help draw in more organic traffic without having to risk your site’s SEO. The more quality content that you have on your site, the higher your chances of increasing organic content.
The way to guide readers to more useful content on your website? Use internal linking. Note that you can only use internal linking when you have plenty of quality content on your site or blog.
The benefit of this is that it can also increase the time that readers spend on your site which is a great way to tell Google and other search engines that your website offers quality content.
As a result, your rankings improve.
Remember however that you should never use too many internal links on a blog that this will cause it to look like spam.
Use of social media
Social media offers an excellent way for you to drive organic traffic to your site. The most popular is that you can promote your content through your followers on your chosen social media platform such as Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram.
Note that to maximize the use of social media in promoting your site, you may want to increase the number of followers. You can do this by offering and promoting useful and interesting content.
Gaining organic content doesn’t have to be difficult nor expensive. With a few tips and tricks, you can increase traffic to your site which will translate to more conversions. Just make sure that you uphold quality in everything that you do.
Regardless of your marketing campaign whether it is running Facebook ads or creating a message for your homepage, the message needs to resonate with people and do so in a powerful way. Only then can you gain an edge in compelling people to purchase your products.
However, this is often something that is more said than done to many businesses. They fail to create powerful and impactful messages and instead create messages that are too generic which then fails to grab attention. Eventually, the business will fail to match up to its competitors and eventually go under.
So how do you ensure that this doesn’t happen to your business?
Understand your audience
The first thing is to understand who you are marketing to? What are their problems, wants, and needs?
You will need to identify a niche and marketing persona. Only then can you create the ideal message in your marketing campaigns.
You will also need to identify, call, and survey your target audience to find out what they are searching for in the market.
As you interview members of your audience, you will begin to notice patterns and can then use this information in creating highly tailored marketing messages.
You can do this by following the same messaging framework that your business uses. The more customers can identify a certain type of message with your brand the more they are likely to trust you.
Customers like consistently and it is this consistency that creates a feeling of reliability and subsequently trust.
For instance, you can use a tagline, and value prop on all your brand messaging. You can then craft your copy around the same value pillars for your brand.
Craft messages to people
This is one of the most downplayed and lightly taken strategies when crafting marketing messages. You need to talk as if you are speaking to people and not about people. For instance, in the massage use second-person voice. This means using “you” and avoiding using “them”
Also, avoid using complicated words and jargon as this can leave people confused and feeling as though the advertisement wasn’t meant for them.
What we are saying here is to talk to people like humans.
Keep things short, simple and direct
With marketing, the goal is to always first and foremost grab attention. Don’t overplay it by using long and complicated text messages and lengthy paragraphs.
Instead, use short and simple text as this has been proven to be more effective at not only grabbing attention and sending leads through the sales funnel.
As you create copy, read through again and make it shorter and tighter while ensuring it is clear and concise.
Make use of emotion
The best way to make ensure that your marketing copy resonates with customers is by making use of their emotions. Arouse their need to use your product and they are much more likely to convert.
To do this figure out people’s needs, fears, and wants and create copy around them.
When marketing, talk more about the benefits of your products rather than their features. Customers don’t care about the technicalities that go into creating the product. Instead, they care about whether the product is going to help them or their loved ones.
Making a marketing message that converts is not as difficult as it may appear. With a few tips and tricks that appeal to the customer psyche, you can increase sales. Just make sure to follow up on your marketing campaigns and make tweaks where necessary. This ensures your message resonates well with your target audience.
When live chat first came out, it revolutionized service delivery. It was now easy for customers to get an agent and receive support and the customers felt heard. Because of this, they reported higher levels of satisfaction.
This is the power of a conversation. The great thing is that it is also being utilized in other areas of marketing.
But what is it?
What is conversational marketing?
Conversational marketing encompasses all methods used to engage with the customers in a dialogue or conversation. This can include live chat, SMS messaging, and live video call on social media.
Why your business should use conversational marketing
There are some key advantages to conversational marketing that goes over and above the more traditional marketing methods such as online contact forms and email marketing.
You are better able to understand your customers’ needs
Having a conversation with a potential customer is the best way to build a good rapport and relationship. Via conversation you are also able to better assess your customers’ pain points and which solutions they are looking for.
With the information gathered through conversation, you can improve the product, tailor marketing campaigns, and create content that best appeals to the needs of your customers.
The potential for more sales
Traditional methods of lead generation have one flaw—lag time. Often there is time between a customer filling out a form and a marketing agent reaching out to them, or before sending an email and getting a response.
During this time the customers could lose interest and switch over to a competitor.
With conversational marketing tools such as live chat, you can respond to a customer as soon as they reach out. In fact, many customers will opt for such tools due to their quick response to any other tools.
No, we don’t mean offering support here. What we mean is that when it comes to online shopping, customers do not have access to a salesperson to help them during the shopping experience.
The downside to this is that in case the customer has a bad experience, they are likely not to return to your online store.
With conversational marketing tools such as live chat, a customer and ask questions and ask for support and receive both within an instant. If a customer is shopping during odd hours chatbots allow them to still receive assistance as it mimics the human experience.
Tips to utilize conversational marketing
Install live chat
Live chat is the quickest way to utilize conversational marketing in your business. Often businesses will include chat boxes that offer fast assistance to customers while also providing them with the option of talking to a live agent.
Offer personalized messages
If you opt for chatbots, it is important to keep in mind that customers prefer speaking to a live person. You can use this to tailor your chatbot messages to sound just the way you do when answering questions.
Ensure that the chatbot feels natural by altering the time and the responses to sound as if a live person is responding.
Combine conversation marketing with digital marketing
While conversational marketing is a great way to offer a more personalized experience for your customers it is important to say that you do not neglect other digital marketing options for relationship building.
Whether it’s social media marketing or email marketing. They should complement your conversational marketing plans.
Conversational marketing opens new doors to lead generation and customer retention. It also offers opportunities for better understanding the customer. The information you gather through conversational marketing can help improve the bottom line.
This month’s blog will be focusing on email marketing.
You can imagine my excitement when I saw an email come through from my friends at H2H Consulting talking about Email Marketing as well, specifically Email Marketing Trends for 2021.
Check out their blog post about Email Marketing Trends that you should know about.