Top 7 Mistakes New Online Marketers Make
Online marketing can make or break a business, and it is understandable why online marketers are put under so much pressure. Add to that the fact that the job is essentially a mix of several different disciplines, from analyzing numbers to understanding the psychology of the end users. All these factors could lead new marketers into a bunch of mistakes that at best could reduce the efficiency and effectiveness of their campaigns. At worst, making these beginner mistakes could harm the business and cause them to lose their step in today’s competitive environment.
Here’s a rundown of the things that could go wrong as you wrestle with the responsibilities of online marketing for the first time, along with how to sidestep them and stay on the road to success.
Forgetting to go local.
While Google has been focusing more and more on the personal aspects of life (like understanding what type of food you prefer, or what you ride to work), many new marketers are pushing to go beyond the local barriers to move into a national or even global reach. However, for an online business without any physical presence, this could hurt since you will still be primarily serving a specific city or community.
Hence, forgetting to go local and not taking advantage of Google’s My Business (or similar platforms) could cause you to miss an important segment of your market. When people search online, they are still far more likely to buy from an online business that’s just around the neighborhood than one across the country. By focusing on local search, you can bring in the business of the buyers immediately around you.
Focusing on “Perfection”.
New online marketers tend to be idealistic about their roles. After all, online marketing is a silver bullet of sorts. However, it is still not an exact science. There are lots of things to understand, lots of numbers to crunch, lots of campaigns to write up, and lots of posts and replies to look at. Are all these important? In their own way, yes. But you shouldn’t let that distract from the fact that marketing is all about action, not analysis.
In this field, it is important to embrace the lapses and just get on with what should be done next. If you feel you lack insight into an aspect of customer behavior, or if you think you need more time to round out a campaign, you shouldn’t let that distract you from the other things that can be done to get the ball rolling right this moment. The biggest mistake you could make is to sit down in analysis paralysis while competitors are running “flawed” campaigns that are still better than no marketing at all! Start flawed, then improve things along the way.
Putting quantity over quality.
When customers see your brand all the time, it makes an impact, right? That’s not always true. It all depends on just how “good” are the things that the customers are seeing. Sadly, in the age of content marketing, more marketers are going for quantity over quality, focusing on posts that come frequently as logistically possible.
But if you’re just starting out, you have to make your mark by emphasizing quality. Good content should attract customers by giving them something of value in order to gain their business (not the other way around). This is why most blogs fail, despite multitudes of them cropping up every moment. Most of them fail to gain the customer’s trust and fail to tout the real value of the business. Furthermore, search engines are now getting smarter, and good content also helps improve search rankings!
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Because there’s so much to do, many beginner marketers believe that being busy is best. That’s well and good, but only if the efforts taken are effective.
This is why one of the greatest traits of a successful marketer is organization and a sense of priority. There are so many distractions that can pounce on your work flow. You need to be able to differentiate which tasks would have the most impact on your ultimate objective.
Spending too much, too soon.
Marketing budgets are hard-fought and hard-won, yet there’s always a temptation to spend a huge chunk (or all!) of it in one go, to fund a grand campaign. This could be pulled off by veterans, but those just starting off are advised to test the market first before committing to so much spending. After all, there is no single strategy that is guaranteed to bring in results regardless of the market. Furthermore, the success of the business does not depend on the size of the marketing budget — as mentioned earlier, it all depends on how effective your efforts are.
Not staying on the bus.
When results are slow and gradual, there’s the temptation to call the strategy a failure and move on to something else. After all, you have a lot of tools in your belt.
However, it is important to understand that unlike traditional marketing, online marketing takes a considerable time investment. Traffic may roll in slowly, but that would also mean that a well-crafted campaign will produce results even years after it was ran.
So when things seem slow, take stock of any growth you’ve had in the interim and capitalize on it instead of dropping the ball and moving on to something else (which would be just as likely to show the same slow results!).
Forgetting to stay on track.
Part of a marketer’s job is to stay on top of the current trends. As mobile, video, and local search became primary industry drivers alongside social media and content marketing, those who weren’t able to follow suit were left biting the dust of more agile and more informed companies.
As a new online marketer, there is the temptation to think you’ve already learned everything. But everyday something new comes up that could drastically affect how you do the next day’s work. Whether it’s a new platform, some new trend in user preference, a change or algorithm, or a new competitor, online marketing has plenty to keep you on your toes!
Are you guilty of any of these top 7 mistakes? No need to worry. The online platform also offers phenomenal room for growth, and with the right attitude and the right learning you will be on your way to more marketing success!