Lack of growth or forward movement can be the most frustrating thing when you are running a business. The old adage “if you build it, they will come” really doesn’t apply to brands anymore with so much noise crowding the marketplace. You need to make sure your marketing strategy is on point before you can start seeing great results.
Chances are, if you aren’t seeing great results, your marketing strategy is missing something. You could just “try new things,” but you would be better off to take a step back and figure out what is really going on so you can move forward with certainty.
If your marketing strategy just isn’t working, here are four factors that could be holding you back.
You have no idea who your customer is
Your customer should be at the centre of your marketing strategy. Without them, you don’t have a business. But if you have never taken the time to fully define who your ideal customer is and look at the characteristics of your target audience, then there is no way you can market to them efficiently. Your marketing strategy would be a series of guesses. You might get lucky and your strategy will work, but the more likely scenario is that you aren’t seeing the results you would like. Why rely on luck when you can do a little bit of work up front to target your efforts (and your budget) properly?
First you need to list all of the characteristics you can think of that describe your target audience. Consider factors like demographics (age, gender, socio-economic status, etc.) and Psychographics (buying habits, hobbies, values, etc.). You want to make sure that your audience isn’t too broad – you can’t target everyone – but also not too narrow – you would be cutting yourself off from opportunities.
Marketing to the wrong person means you are wasting both your time and money. If your marketing strategy isn’t working, this is the first place to start to make sure you are on the right track. Hit pause on your strategy and do the foundational work.
You’re not listening to your customers
In some cases, you might know exactly who your customer is, but you’re just not listening to them. Keeping open communication channels with your target audience is important for you to figure out exactly what their wants and needs are. Customer feedback is invaluable to businesses because you are hearing straight from those who are purchasing your product or service.
Once you know who they are, figure out where and how they like to interact with brands and then keep your ears open.
Using the wrong channels
Your marketing strategy is built on a series of choices you make. You might build your strategy based on what competitors are doing, among other factors, but just because it’s “working for someone else” doesn’t mean it’s right for you. It comes back to really getting to know your audience and figuring out where they are. That should be the driving factor in all of your decisions. If you are targeting an audience that is extremely tech-averse, you would focus more on traditional tactics like direct mail. If you are targeting an audience that is well-versed in new and emerging tech, you would want to push the boundaries with your digital strategy.
If there is a skills gap between what you can do and what your customer needs, either pick up new skills if you are lacking in areas, or hire someone to do it for you. Lack of Knowledge or skill should never deter you from reaching your customers in the right ways. It will only hurt you in the long run.
You aren’t telling a story
You might have a killer product or service, but that isn’t who you are as a brand. The people and the story behind the brand are the most important aspect of what you do. A lot of businesses lose sight of that and they focus on the product or service itself.
Your marketing strategy should showcase your brand personality and messaging overall. If you build that up, then marketing what you are selling will come easier because you are more focused on creating connections with your target audience rather than the sale.
Your marketing strategy should take time to build, and you should identify all of the ways it will help you reach your business goals. As long as your goals are aligned, your strategic results will show.
If you are having trouble with your marketing and you just aren’t seeing the results you want, give us a call. We can help you assess where you’re at and where you should be going.