Boston, MA (WiredPRNews.com) — As you may sense yourself, there’s a “gap” between your business and your marketplace (and don’t worry, practically every company has one) which is filled with unfortunate misunderstandings, alternate / incorrect information, comments and ratings in favor of the competition, and unanswered questions to which you could respond compellingly.
After performing Gap Analyses across a wide array of industries and client types, 4goodmedia began developing an “e-kit” to help marketers how to bridge the gap they’re facing. We decided to share a small portion with you that we lovingly call . . .
Six Especially Unfortunate Marketing Mistakes to Avoid in this Recession:
1. Thinking too narrowly about your company and its offerings. Never underestimate the marketplace’s ability to be resourceful and determined to develop solutions that may even equal the qualities of your product or service. Tip: forget your product names and hype for a second. Do a search for the attributes or benefits of your product or service in relevant forums or social networks. You’ll probably be surprised by the results.
2. Not speaking to their ‘pain’. Think of it this way. When you hurt your arm, do you search for topics (in search engines, bookmarks, or social networks) that have to do with, say, a medicated splint, or do you search for topics that describe how your arm feels? It’s easy to talk about the solution, but that’s not the only – or the best – way, necessarily. Tip: Answer this question: “What is the big problem my company solves?” Does your website and other marketing materials address that thoroughly or only cursorily? Once your target market connects with your message, you almost want them to murmur to themselves, “wow, that’s me.”
3. Over-complicating the buying / selling process. The beauty of the online marketplace is that it is impulsive – even about important decisions. An educational services provider understood this best when it added automatic call-back to its online marketing campaign. The switch instantly increased sales and shrunk the sales cycle by over 25%. Tip: drink a ½ gallon of water. Now simulate the buying process. Which came first, the purchase or the sprint to the bathroom? Alternately, go to a busy, crowded place and follow your company’s buying process. Is it easy to follow with all the distractions and noise?
4. Treating customers like what they’re worth. We see it again and again. Small customers get the worst treatment. Sometimes it’s intentional, most of the time it’s the result of internal prioritization decisions. Spending less time on smaller clients may seem like a smart business decision until you realize that they blog and complain in industry and consumer forums just as much (if not more) than larger clients. Tip: Stay true to your “sweet spot.”
5. Not offering any entry-level products (we’re in a recession for Pete’s sake). As mentioned in the first bullet, the marketplace will come up with an appropriate solution for their needs, and in this economy, they’re more motivated than ever. Clients and customers have demonstrated that they still want to spend, but they’re much more adverse to risk. Tip: Pull the right people in a room right now and start brainstorming ways you can sell smaller products or services to remain attractive to the marketplace. And, treat them the same as all your clients. Alternately, develop more than a dozen reasons to buy your existing offerings. Make it super safe for them to make a buying decision.
6. Thinking that there’s no way to incorporate causes into your marketing. More than ever, in BtoC or BtoB sectors, consumers give more respect to corporations that demonstrate their values as a normal course of doing business. There are dozens of legitimate charities that could use your help and would be happy to help spread the word about your company, executive, or product line. Tip: Visit CharityNavigator.org to learn which charities have the best track records and would make the best partners.
Are you making one or more of the above mistakes? Ask for feedback from your customers and partners. Look in social networks for comments that describe the pain points that your offerings address. Find forums that are favored by your target market and monitor them. Pick three key facets of your company and search for those topics on Twitter. You’ll gain the proper perspective you need to start creating breakthrough improvements in all your marketing efforts.
Learn more about the key success factors to marketing your business in a recession in our blog: “Analyzing 4good”