Many business professionals reach a point where they begin to question how effective their marketing really is. Or, sometimes, they already know that their marketing isn’t producing the results that they feel it should, despite the fact that lots of time and money have been spent. Understandably, this realization can generate lots of frustration, which leads to a common question - why isn’t my marketing working?
Below, is a list of five of the most common reasons why an organization’s marketing efforts are not achieving desired results.
1.Marketing is driven by assumptions and “gut feelings” vs. metrics and data. Not long ago, using a marketer’s intuition was the norm for determining how and where to market. Personal opinions drove marketing decisions and results were measured in ways that did not necessarily correlate with the actual marketing. This approach made it nearly impossible to determine the value and effectiveness of marketing efforts.
Now, there are numerous tools available that provide essential data for tracking marketing effectiveness and consumer behaviors throughout the sales cycle. Rather than relying on educated guesses, marketers should use available metrics to know with certainty which marketing efforts are and are not working. An analytical marketing approach also allows businesses to spot new opportunities for reaching and engaging with their target audiences.
Nearly all organizations, regardless of their size and budget, have access to statistics that provide marketing insights. While there are robust systems available that streamline the reporting of data and provide more detailed intelligence, there are also plenty of free and inexpensive tools available that can be utilized (even by marketing novices) to help drive the best possible marketing.
2.Inconsistent branding is waning marketing effectiveness.
While branding and marketing are different, they do need to work together. Inconsistent branding does impact the effectiveness of marketing. Although there is more to branding than the name, logo and design, it can be these areas that start to negatively affect the outcome of the marketing.
It is important to ensure that the branding across all marketing channels is the same. Using different logo and name variations is guaranteed to cause confusion – to the extent that consumers may not realize that all marketing is representing the same company or product. The same holds true with product feature and brand story messaging. Marketing with constant, unwavering branding is more credible and memorable - and will produce the best results.
3.The call-to-action is hidden, missing or weak.
A missing or weak call-to-action (CTA) represents a huge missed opportunity for leads and sales. All marketing should give your audience a compelling reason to want to act – whether it is to order, sign-up, pick up the phone or visit your site. And, if the goal is to get potential customers to visit your site, you should promise more than just general information. Be more specific on what the CTA is offering. For example, instead of having a CTA that states “for more information”, try using something like “Learn more ways to…“
In addition to being present and strong, the call-to-action also needs to be highly visible – not hidden on the bottom of a web page or flyer. If on a web page, the CTA button should be above the fold (the part of the web page above where you must scroll down to view).
4.Marketing is disjointed vs. integrated.
Good marketing uses a variety of channels (email, social media, print, etc.) to reach customers. Just as it’s important to have consistent branding, it is also crucial that the marketing used in the different channels is consistent. All of your marketing should complement and support one another vs. fight against each other. When marketing to the same audience, it can be more effective to run one campaign that uses multiple marketing channels than give each channel its own campaign.
For organizations with a marketing team that has staff managing different marketing channels, it is important that everyone is working toward the execution of an integrated marketing plan. A marketing department managed in “silos” can also lead to disjointed marketing.
5.The marketing team is not aligned with other teams within the organization.
Organizations that do not have their marketing team aligned with the rest of the internal teams will not reach their full potential for success. The sales and marketing departments are examples of two teams that frequently lack alignment. Marketing, sales and the senior management teams all need to be working toward the same goals at the same time. This goes back to consistency. Having the entire organization aligned to support the efforts of consistent promotions, messaging and follow up are some of the keys to marketing and organizational success.
Don’t be discouraged if your marketing is not producing the results that you want. You can change this. Take a step back and compare your marketing situation to the “5 Most Common Mistakes” listed above. Chances are you’ll find your current marketing scenario matching up to at least one of these areas. Once you know what’s not working, you’ll be able to start fixing.
For help assessing and repairing your marketing, contact Break Ice Marketing.