If you’re new to online marketing, it can be tricky to know where to start. Not sure which channel to focus on? Trying to figure out how to position your product compared to your competitors’? Don’t worry, we’re here to help. In this article, we’ll tell you about 10 common mistakes that you’re making as an online marketer, and how you can avoid them.
1. Focusing On Retailing, Not Marketing
Although you might be tempted to focus on what you can sell, rather than what you can offer as an asset to a company, you should strive to achieve balance. What we mean by that is that you should consider product marketing (ie, creating awareness around your product) and you should consider channel marketing (ie, getting the word out to the right audience using the right channel).
Product marketing is all about driving interest in your product, while channel marketing is all about driving action (ie, buying) on a brand or business. Depending on your product and target audience, you might need to focus more on one or the other. For example, if your product is B2C (Business to Consumer) and you’re looking to target small business owners, you’ll probably need to do more channel marketing, as business owners are typically less aware of products and more aware of marketing strategies.
2. Hitting The Wrong Audience With Your Marketing Message
Your product or service might be suitable for a broad audience, but your marketing message needs to reflect that. For example, if your product is B2B (Business to Business) and you’re looking to target large businesses, you’ll want to make sure that your messaging doesn’t suggest that your product is good for consumers. Hit the wrong audience and you could end up with a bad experience that turns off your customer rather than engaging them.
To avoid this, you might want to consider who you’re marketing to and what they want before you move forward with your plan. Take a little bit of research and planning, and you’ll be able to narrow down exactly who the right audience is for you.
3. Focusing On Keywords Rather Than Building A Branding Strategy
While you might want to include both short keywords and long-tail keywords in your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) strategy, you should primarily focus on the latter. Long-tail keywords are all the words and phrases that people enter into search engines, which might include your chosen keywords, as well as others that you might not have thought of. For example, if your product is a blog and you’re using the keywords ‘fashion’, ‘style’, and ‘wedding’ in your post titles and body content, your short keywords (‘fashion’, ‘style’, and ‘wedding’) might be sufficient; however, focusing on keywords might result in you missing out on the broadest audience possible. When deciding which keywords to target, always consider your desired audience, and the type of content you’re creating. In addition to that, do some research into the competition to determine how easy it will be to rank for your chosen keywords.
4. Choosing The Wrong Platform For Your Marketing Campaign
The right platform is crucial for any kind of marketing campaign. Without a suitable channel, it can be difficult to connect with your audience and engage them into taking action. When deciding which platform to use, you need to consider your intended audience, the features that the platform provides, pricing, and whether you’re comfortable with the idea of being responsible for the content that appears on your site.
When choosing a platform, it’s important to find one that’s tailored to your needs. If you’re looking for a free platform, consider WordPress since it’s extremely widely used and has a reputable service that you can get for free. If you’re looking for a more established and trusted platform, consider choosing one of the big three: Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.
5. Producing Unbiased Content
The content that you create doesn’t have to be completely honest to be effective. For instance, let’s say that you’re a tech company that creates productivity software and you want to promote your product, but you also want to leave some room for your competitors as well. One way of accomplishing that is by creating unbiased content that isn’t overly branded.
It might be beneficial to write multiple articles, each with a different angle, about your chosen topic. The more content that you create, the more opportunities you have of attracting new customers, creating engagement, and gaining credibility. When writing your content, it’s important to keep your audience in mind and consider what they want to see. Not only that, but you should write in a way that is easy to understand by anyone who’s reading your content (regardless of their experience or education).
6. Publishing Your Content Too Soon
With so much competition, the need for finding a quick and easy way to gain credibility is crucial. One way of doing that is by publishing content as soon as possible. Although it’s tempting to put off writing and publishing content until it’s perfect, doing so might harm your efforts. If you’re worried about whether or not your content is flawless, then you should consider revising and editing it, rather than waiting for it to be perfect before publishing. This is especially important if you want your content to stand out amongst the competition.
7. Focusing Too Much On SEO
Search Engine Optimization does play a crucial role in getting your content out there, and we don’t want to underestimate its importance, but you should not put all your eggs into that basket.
Even though SEO can be highly effective in getting your content out there, you should still consider other forms of marketing, like social media, to be a part of your overall strategy.
8. Choosing Short-Lived Trends Over Long-Term Planning
One of the biggest mistakes that new and experienced marketers alike make, is relying on something that happened in the recent past as a reason for why a trend will succeed in the future. Although this is a tempting strategy, it can backfire, and potentially harm your overall marketing strategy.
For example, if you’re a fashion company, and you choose to follow the current ‘in’ trends, you might decide to go with tailgating at the Super Bowl as a fashion statement, but if you want to be viewed as a long-term business, you might want to avoid that. What we mean is that if you want to choose a fashion style that is going to be popular in five or ten years, then you might want to steer clear of the current trends and go with something that is more timeless. The key is to choose something that is going to be trendy for the long haul.
9. Focusing Too Much On Visibility, Rather Than Conversions
Getting noticed for the right reasons is important, but increasing your visibility as a way of growing your business can sometimes come at the cost of conversions. It’s important to find that balance.
If you’re concerned about your business, you might want to increase your SEO and try to get more people to your site, however, if your ultimate goal is to sell a product or service, then you might want to focus more on your conversion rates, rather than your number of views.
10. Focusing Too Much On Measuring The Results Of Your Marketing
Last but not least, we want to remind you that not all marketing strategies work for everyone. Just because a strategy is effective for one business or one industry, it does not mean that it’s going to be effective for your company, or even for your industry. In some cases, the strategy might work, but you might not be able to measure its effect easily. In those situations, you’re better off avoiding the strategy.
That being said, with everything that you need to measure and track, it can be difficult to not get absorbed into the minutiae of running your campaign. The more you learn and the more you do, the more you realize how much there is to know and how much you still need to learn. With that in mind, as challenging as it can be to not get caught up in the minutiae of your day-to-day operations, remember to relax and take a step back now and then so that you can maintain a big-picture view of what’s happening. All of this will make a huge difference in the end when it comes to your marketing strategy and the results that you’re able to achieve.