By avoiding these five common mistakes you can steer clear of some major marketing headaches that hold new businesses back and set yourself up with great habits for the future.
Not all marketing mistakes are obvious, in fact some are so subtle you might not even realise youre making them. Are you guilty of any of these?
Over the years I spent building my own business, I made many mistakes that were easily avoidable if Id known I was making them. The problem was, I didnt. I only realised they were mistakes with the benefit of hindsight.
But what if you could skip the whole hindsight thing? What if you could avoid making the same mistakes I did? Your business would likely progress at a quicker rate and youd achieve your goals and desired lifestyle much faster.
So heres your chance to benefit from my hindsight. Here are five mistakes I made back in the day that would have been easy to avoid if only Id known I was making them:
Mistake #1: Changing suppliers impulsively
When you realise your marketing supplier isnt working out, the natural impulse is to drop them as quickly as possible and move on. Before you give them the flick, stop and think. Do you have someone else ready to fill their shoes?
Ditching a supplier without the right planning will inevitably mean scrambling for a replacement and dealing with delays while you bring them up to speed. During this time your marketing activities will likely be disrupted or inconsistent and this can make your business look bad.
Thats not to say you should put up with someone who isnt delivering, but its a good idea to put a transition plan in place and line up a replacement before you cut ties. This will save you a lot of stress and minimise disruption.
Mistake #2: Giving vague or unclear instructions
When it comes to effective marketing, communication is all-important. Most of the clients I work with have a clear vision for their business, and they know exactly what they want their marketing materials to look and sound like. Unfortunately most designers and copywriters arent mind readers and if you dont clearly communicate the details of what youre looking for, youre not likely to get a satisfactory result. This can ultimately lead to frustration for everyone and extra costs for you, as projects need to get redone or run over time.
If you dont have a formal briefing process, create one. Put everything in writing, even if you think its obvious or it goes without saying. Use examples wherever possible and encourage your marketing providers to ask for clarification if they dont understand anything.
Mistake #3: Changing plans at the last minute
So your amazing new product or service is a couple of days from launch and you suddenly wake up at 2am with a brilliant idea. You have to change everything, right now. This is one I can definitely relate to and all I can say is dont go there! Changing your marketing focus or strategy at the 11th hour is only going to lead to frustration and a rushed job. Stick to the plan and save your amazing idea for next time. Trust me, its not worth the stress!
Mistake #4: Not having a big enough marketing budget
This is a very common mistake, especially when you are just starting out and trying to keep costs to a minimum. Unfortunately when it comes to marketing you usually get what you pay for. Cheap marketing materials have the effect of making your business look tacky which isnt going to do you any favours in the long run.
Even if you dont have much to spare, it is worth investing in a high quality logo and professionally designed website. Creating the right impression from the start will bring you more customers over the long term and help your business grow.
Mistake #5: Slow approval processes
Dragging your heels on approving projects or releasing funding can mean missing out on opportunities. Marketing is a fast paced industry and it pays to act quickly. Long wait times for approval are often a sign that the business processes need reviewing so your marketing providers can act quickly when they identify opportunities and your business can avoid missing out.
Have you ever made any of the above mistakes?