A strong marketing strategy is key to running a successful and sustainable business. (PERIOD)
However, there are a ton of different ways to approach marketing, and I don’t believe there is one perfect way or one ideal strategy. You have to find the strategy that best fits you and your audience (but fair warning a marketing strategy is never static, it’s never set and done).
While there may not be a perfect strategy, there are some guidelines that can help you more quickly and successfully find your marketing strategy fit. Below are 5 common issues that hold many entrepreneurs back from finding the marketing strategy that works for them.
Not Knowing Your Audience
Your marketing strategy is only as good as your knowledge of your audience. You need to know your audience to catch their attention with your message. The better you understand your audience and their needs the stronger and more successful your marketing strategy will be.
I can’t stress to you enough the importance of getting your hands dirty when it comes to getting to know your potential clients when you first start a business. It doesn’t matter the level of experience in your field of expertise you have; if you have never worked one-on-one or had to get clients yourself, you need to get some one-on-one time in to understand how to speak their language.
Directly working with clients or potential clients will allow you to better understand their needs, better understand their questions/struggles and better understand their hesitations around what you offer. All that leads to stronger offerings and a stronger marketing message.
Inconsistent Strategy and/or Execution
You need a plan, a strategy to follow to be able to be consistent. Without one, how do you know what to do in your day-to-day operations when it comes to marketing? Also a strategy is not a single channel you use to market your business. Posting on Instagram 5 times a day is not a strategy.
Read more about what makes up a solid marketing strategy in this post.
And while you might have a strategic strategy established, it doesn’t do you any good if you aren’t able to execute it consistently.
For a marketing strategy to work all the pieces need to be applied and routinely. That’s where strong systems can help you out. Read this post on more about why your marketing strategy requires a system.
Lack Of Direct Promotion
There are plenty of ways to direct people to your offerings in a full marketing strategy, but you still need to make sure you actually, clearly, state what you offer and direct people to buy it (or book a call or fill out a form, depending on your process).
You must repeatedly and directly invite your audience to buy from you, to take action. Not making that direct connection between what you are educating about and what you are selling is often where your strategy is failing if all other marketing pieces are in place.
Online marketing is a noisy place; you need to be direct to cut through that noise. While you might feel you are promoting “a lot” it’s often not nearly as much as you think or what it should be.
Lack Of Focus
You may have all the pieces of a marketing strategy established, but you still might be lacking focus within that strategy. If you want your message to reach your audience effectively, it needs to be laser focused. You might offer several services and maybe even some products or courses, but you need to have focused strategies for each of those offerings.
If you try to promote 10 offers at once, your audience gets confused, and your message gets muddled. It’s much more useful to choose one main service to market per quarter (or month depending on your offerings).
Also be strategic with your offerings, some courses/products can serve as a downsell to a more expensive offering.
One great way to make sure your message is getting through is to reuse, recycle, and repeat your content. Check out this post for more about how reusing content is a must for all business owners.
Lack Of Experimenting
While consistently executing a strategy is essential, you can go too far by sticking with the same approach for too long. The online marketing world is always changing, and your strategy needs to adjust as well. Strategies that worked even a year ago may no longer be effective and you need to keep looking to adapt.
Keep this in mind when “following” set strategies given by experts, yes that particular strategy worked for them but how long ago? This is especially true for strategies with particular social media channels. Always check the dates on posts about how to optimize your social media strategy especially when focused on a specific channel.
Marketing your business can be hard work, so don’t make it harder than necessary by throwing these 5 roadblocks in your own path. If your marketing strategy is leaving you underwhelmed, then examine it for the above 4 marketing mistakes before throwing in one more channel or new direction, and if it’s #5 then experiment away (put do it smartly).
Need help getting a basic marketing plan together?
I’ve got you covered! Sign-up below and get your Simplified Marketing Plan started.
Download the workbook, watch the video for each section as I walk you through crafting an example plan and for my Trello fans, there is a template board that mirrors the workbook to help you organize your strategy.