Times, tastes, trends, and habits change and evolve over the years and so should your outlook on your marketing campaigns. We are now living and working in an era that demands and expects more from our businesses and brands. Unfortunately, for many brands, their online marketing campaigns are stuck in the past, and therefore, doomed to fail harder than Greece’s economy.
To avoid these pitfalls, read our top 3 reasons why your marketing campaign might not be working, and what you can do to fix it:
- You haven’t assessed your competitive landscape
To effectively and successfully execute your marketing campaigns, you need to first understand the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and challenges for your business. In assessing this overall picture, it’s vital that you examine not only your own situation but also the marketing landscape as it relates to your competition.
Review the current industry setting and contemporary marketing trends to determine how competitors position and promote their brands and product lines across various points of customer interaction. Map competitors across a variety of end benefits to understanding where they’re positioned in customers’ minds (physical benefits) and hearts (emotional benefits). These positioning maps will then help you identify benefit gaps in the marketplace.
- You’re copying your competitors
If you’re copying your competitors, you’re always going to be following in their footsteps. And if you’re following in their footsteps, you’re always going to be in second place at the very best.
Unfortunately, it’s becoming harder and harder for new companies to enter into markets as the underdogs these days, even with a superior product. Why is that? Because winning in the marketplace isn’t just about creating a better product. It’s about getting people to believe it’s a better product. It’s about influencing consumer perception. Enter content marketing.
Content marketing can allow your brand to position itself as an industry thought leader, while helping you carve out a trail all to your own. No more waiting for the next big thing to be created only to tweak it into your own. Our digital world has been built upon agility, nimbleness, and revolution. Use all of these things to your advantage. Even the smallest organisms can change an entire ecosystem.
- You don’t understand your target market
You’re excited about building your brand, and a major part of that journey is crafting compelling creative marketing initiatives. But before any creative juices start flowing, you must fully understand your audience, competition, and unique selling proposition.
Developing a thorough customer audit can help you understand the relationship of your brand to its customer base, both existing and desired. Gaining information about your company’s purchase cycles, decision processes, company performance, and product/service gaps, offers invaluable insights for your sales team about the best sales opportunities and appropriate times to optimize sales messaging.
Once you have completed this process, you’ll have a better understanding of the existing relationship between your brand and its customer base. But do you fully understand the nature and composition of your target audience? Develop rich target customer personas to create an ideal representation of your target consumer. Give him or her a name, define their age range and income, address socioeconomic positioning, and build out this persona or personas as much as you can. Once you complete this evaluation process, your marketing department will be better equipped to execute marketing communications that are intelligent, effective, on-brand, and on-target.
There you have it, three easily manageable pitfalls to avoid in your next marketing campaign. Of course, this list is essentially endless. However, it’s important to tackle one thing at a time, and starting at the foundation of your brand is usually a great stepping-stone.
Just remember that effective marketing requires a complete understanding and analysis of your entire working environment. Make a plan, and always be open to adaptation. If you’re looking to team up, give us a call.
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in September 2015 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.