Five Marketing Mistakes to Avoid | See Girl Work

Five Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

marketing mistakes

There are many things we get involved with before we’re ready and marketing mistakes that we should avoid when it comes to our businesses.

The marketing landscape has grown exponentially over the past five years. Even for someone like me, who’s been in the game for a while, it seems so much bigger than it used to be.

From free and easily accessible social media, web hosting and online image tools — the barriers to access are pretty nil these days.

The good news is — there are many free online marketing tools. This makes it easier for new businesses and freelancers like us to get access to the marketing, branding and online tools we need to promote our services.

But with so many low or no cost opportunities, the bad news is that we can get overwhelmed, start in the middle instead of the beginning and jump the gun before we’re fully ready.

Sometimes we start working on a website before we understand who our core clients are. We can order business cards before we have an understanding of our brand guide. We can even start engaging in social media before we’ve developed a content marketing or social media strategy.

I get caught up too. I love the process of branding and designing something new. But I always have to pull myself back and ask myself, “what purpose does this serve?” and “how does this fit into my overall business plan?”

There are so many options and resources. Much of which wasn’t even around a few years ago. But too much can sometimes be distracting and take us off course.

There are many things we get involved with before we’re ready and marketing mistakes that we should avoid when it comes to our businesses.

Five Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

1. Not Knowing Our Why. If you don’t know why you’re in business, you’re in trouble.

As a business owner, freelancer, or side-hustler, developing your vision and identifying the purpose and goals of your business is really the first step in brand positioning.

Knowing our why is what’s going to create a solid foundation for all the fun stuff like colours and developing a brand identity.

If we want our brand to be articulate, if we want to attract more of our dream clients, then we need to spend time developing our business vision statement, mission statement and goals — our why.

This process will help you find your niche, develop your unique selling proposition, clarify your purpose and develop game-changing strategies to help you and your business.

2. Not Knowing Our Customers. Often times when I ask a prospective client, “who is your customer?” the response I get back is “everyone.”

This is not a good answer. If you target everyone, you target no one. In order to know what kind of website to build or what kind of content to post on social media, we need to have an understanding of exactly who we’re targeting.

If we publish content that does not resonate with our ideal customers or create sales pipelines that do not cater to them very well — we end up wasting our resources with very little to show for our efforts.

You can get to know your customers through surveys, focus groups, or just one and one conversations.

It’s important to know our customers and their personas so we can know how to market to them.

3. Using Free Website Hosting. Investing in a website or blog host service is definitely a premium cost. When you’re just starting out, every penny is coming out of our own pockets so we try to save as much as we can.

Especially when there are free tools available online that seem to work just as well as the paid version.

But using a free hosting service for your website is not always the best idea. So-called “free” web hosting services offer limited design options and branding capabilities, no site building tools, limited bandwidth, limited storage and often have slow site speed which can affect your SEO.

Plus you do not want an unprofessional domain name like mysmallbusiness.Freewebsite.com

It’s best to pay for your website hosting. Consider this as an investment in your business that will have a return and not as an expense that you’ll never get back.

4. Not Developing a Social Media Strategy. I’ve heard from a number of different folks on this topic.

Many of us try to attract a lot of followers and succeed very well at this. But then when we try to get buy-in for our service, product, event or even our newsletter, it’s like crickets.

Nobody buys, nobody subscribes or nobody signs up.

Again, we have to be clear on our marketing plans and long-term business objectives when it comes to social media marketing.

Clients need to be able to gain trust from you and many won’t purchase the first time they’re introduced to your business.

It takes time to build that trust and developing a social media calendar or content calendar can make it easier to organize and plan out every post, tweet or Snap.

As a business owner, the whole point of using social media as a marketing tool is to attract followers and creating content that can convert your them into customers.

social media marketing

5. Using Inconsistent Branding and Messaging. Consistent messaging and branding is part of what makes the most successful brands so effective.

The experience from one medium or platform to another does not feel disjointed and a cohesive message is spanned across all channels — both offline and online.

But when we rush the process and do things before we’ve put in the time to research, plan and develop our marketing, branding or overall business goals, we risk not being consistent, diluting our brand messaging and sabotaging our own success.

Marketing is the experience you deliver to your clients at each interaction. A consistent brand experience reinforces your identity and builds trust.

If we get off course too much and too often, we can dilute our brands, lose consistency, lose focus and compromise our businesses.

The Bottom Line

There’s nothing wrong with taking your time to re-think and re-evaluate your efforts and pivot when necessary. But if we get off course too much and too often, we can dilute our brands, lose consistency, lose focus and compromise our businesses.

But if we get off course too much and too often, we can dilute our brands, lose consistency, lose focus and compromise our businesses.

 

Alethea Robinson

Founder & Blogger-in-Chief, See Girl Work

Alethea Robinson is a freelance marketing & content writer who provides content strategy, blogging, and writing & editing services for creative agencies and small to medium-sized businesses. In addition to her freelance business, Alethea is also founder and blogger-in-chief at See Girl Work, an online community for creative, entrepreneurial-minded women. Before starting her blog and freelance business, Alethea worked in marketing and communications for over 15 years.

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