For small startups, implementing a marketing plan can be daunting. Every business has unique needs, making a well-thought-out marketing strategy a significant concern.
With digital marketing, sending a public message would mean tapping all popular channels. Because of this, it can be easy to overspend your marketing budget if you’re not used to planning and working smart.
It helps to have an effective strategy that covers all the bases. Valuable business tools like business management software can improve core workflows and processes like staff, field and service management, and everything else in between, allowing businesses to streamline their costs without compromising operations.
If you want to optimize your digital marketing costs, it helps to know the best practices and monitor business performance. Here are the common pitfalls and how to avoid them.
1. Not setting a marketing plan
Marketing is more than advertising. It seeks to send the right messages across proper channels to attract and keep clients or communicate with external partners. It covers several components, including branding, website and content creation, customer relationships, and sales. Speaking of branding, free service estimators from companies like Jobber enable businesses to customize quotes and invoices by inserting details like brand name, logo, and other essential information, saving you from excessive spending.
What you can do: Plan and budget wisely
Identify the essential components of your marketing strategy and allocate specific amounts to each of them. It’s best to align the activities with your business goals, whether you want to create awareness or grow your customer base. Doing this creates a more targeted marketing campaign, making it more effective and raising your return on investment (ROI). It’s not uncommon for small businesses to set aside 10% of their revenues for marketing, depending on their objectives and niche.
2. Doing it blindly
Small businesses often don’t want to spend too much on marketing, seeing it as a waste of money and effort. Additionally, digital marketing can be complex, especially with the multiple factors you must consider. For instance, enterprises must embrace the latest social media marketing strategies if they want to expand their reach.
What you can do: Learn how to market wisely
Targeting your audience can help reduce your marketing expenditure. As a startup, you may want to convey the message to the most significant number of people. Conversely, you need to target your market more effectively to get more conversions while keeping your costs as low as possible.
Understanding your audience’s preferences and behavior is key to achieving this goal as well as analyzing your competitors to identify a unique and winning value proposition. Learning search engine optimization techniques and mapping your customers’ journey can also help. If you don’t have the time and resources, consider hiring a digital ad agency.
3. Failing to set performance indicators
You can’t optimize your advertising and communication performance without knowing which activities work and which ones don’t. Not knowing how effective your strategies are is a common pitfall for most companies. In a survey conducted by Adobe and quoted by bplans.com, 40% of marketing units suspect their strategies aren’t working. Additionally, half of business-to-business (B2B) firms can’t align their campaigns and revenues.
What you can do: Check your marketing performance
Measure your marketing performance by looking at the built-in data analytics for most digital platforms. Besides marketing costs, calculate your customer acquisition cost (CAC) by calculating the total expenses involved, divided by the number of clients your business attracted in a certain period.
4. Forgetting your audience
Learning the latest video content marketing methods isn’t enough. It’s vital to check and evaluate your marketing channels, including website traffic, social media, and content engagement, to see whether you’re reaching your targets.
What you can do: Focus on customer experience
A navigable and mobile-friendly website will make a business more engaging to prospects and clients, boosting your marketing efforts. Make it easy for your customers to find you and purchase from your channels. Analyze customer experience by looking at website usage, conversions, cart abandonment, referrals, and other rates. Make the necessary changes once you’ve identified specific weaknesses.
5. Failing to measure your ROI
The business survey mentioned above also found that only 21% of companies can measure their mobile returns, and a measly 8% can identify the exact figures from their social media campaigns. These low numbers indicate businesses may waste their spending on non-productive marketing activities.
What you can do: Set a periodic review
Measuring ROI from marketing can be done based on your company’s needs and activities. If you’ve been pouring resources into paid social media ads but not getting the results you want, consider looking for other channels where your chances of conversions are higher. Review your key and call to action messages, among others, to understand what needs to be improved.
Digital marketing is a core business component requiring constant review and revision. Companies must allocate a specific budget and track their performances regularly to separate strategies that are working from those that aren’t.
More importantly, data-driven digital marketing techniques help optimize your budget. Using different tools, determine which platforms and campaigns provide the best gains while exploring other options. These tips enable you to manage expenditures while creating the desired impact.