Thanks to the rise of the internet and the fact that almost anyone can start a business and get a website built, we have arrived at a point where every small business owner also has to be an online marketer. Whatever your business does, perhaps the toughest task that you face is getting paying customers to your website and through your sales funnel.
Unfortunately, it’s not easy to do and many internet marketers and business owners make a selection of the same mistakes. So if your marketing isn’t having the results that you were hoping for, see if you are doing any of these things:
1. Your Enthusiasm Waxes & Wanes
This is probably the most common issue, particularly for entrepreneurs who undoubtedly have other things to worry about (like actually running the business). When you are in the mood, you probably get lots of marketing related activities done, but then when you are too busy the marketing gets left on the back burner.
This is why there are so many abandoned Twitter accounts and neglected blogs out there – relics of a marketing campaign that was forgotten. A blog that is never updated can do more harm than good...
If your marketing efforts are inconsistent you need to create a schedule for yourself, set activities that you will do each week and do them. Don’t try to do too much at once, just put in a consistent effort and form some good marketing habits.
2. You Try To Do Too Much
It might feel like there are more marketing channels than you know what to do with. So how do you decide between SEO, PPC, Facebook and Twitter, Pinterest, Blogging etc...?
The important thing is not to try and do it all, because more often than not those leads will be spread too thin. It is better to start with one or two channels and do them well before you move on to others.
Pick the channels that you best understand and until you have mastered them, don’t worry about the others. Generating traffic from any channel is a challenge, and if you try to do them all at once you are likely to fail at all of them at once, particularly if you don’t have the time to spend.
3. You Don’t Know Which Activities Are Working
It’s amazing how often I hear the words “I think PPC is about break even for us” or “We’re not really sure how much traffic Twitter provides”.
The single biggest mistake you can make in your marketing is not tracking your results. Online everything can be tracked and with some simple integration, you can even use CRM software, like Salesforce.com, to track your customers’ lifetime values so as to exact an accurate picture of how effective each marketing channel is. Bizbile Marketing Analytics tracks the effectiveness of all your online marketing sources inside Salesforce. Their software will track Google AdWords, paid social, email campaigns, organic search and Bing Ads. This allows customers to see where their leads are coming from and connect the dots between closed deals and marketing initiatives. Learn more about what Bizible says is the golden metric of marketing.
For every channel that you use you should decide on a few specific metrics that indicate the level of success you are having and focus your marketing efforts on improving those metrics. Anything that you do which does not improve these key numbers is time and money wasted.
4. You Use Data Overload To Procrastinate
Taking the steps above will help a lot here, but without a clear idea of what you need to do it is easy to procrastinate. Tools like Analytics are particularly useful for procrastination purposes – so think critically about how you use them.
If you carefully plan out your marketing activities (point 1) and your key metrics (point 3) then you should be able to select exactly what information you need and what information is irrelevant.
This takes a bit of discipline, but the key point is to always ask yourself “So what?”
Any time you see a new piece of information, think carefully about not only why it matters, but what you can actually do about it. Any information that doesn’t help you to take action is not helpful.
Eventually you will have a clear idea of what information you do need and what you don’t need and you will be able to get the important data without letting data overload distract from important tasks.
Above all else, marketing takes consistent effort, patience and discipline, so try to stay focused, avoid these mistakes and be patient, and eventually you will see your results improving.
About The Author: My name is Adam, I work for www.Digivate.com in London. I am an online marketer and I love working with entreprenuers and small business owners and helping them to get noticed online. My speciality is SEO, but I also have an interest in data analytics.