5 Hard Truth About Marketing
Clearing Up Common Marketing Misconceptions
We love marketing. The strategy, the analytics, seeing the pieces fit together, and the impact they make as a comprehensive whole. BUT (pardon us for this blasphemy) there are limits to what marketing can accomplish, especially as a standalone solution.
So today we’re going to shatter some of the illusions we most commonly see when it comes to marketing.
5 Hard Truths About Marketing
1. Marketing is No Magic Pill
You can’t just start a business or create a project, then wave your magic marketing wand and customers will appear! If the product isn’t good, no amount of marketing can fix that. If your business model has huge, gaping holes in it, marketing can hide them but only temporarily. So start your business with a rough business plan, or a business viability check. Make sure the idea has value and you can build a quality product or service, and then start marketing it.
2. Marketing Doesn’t Replace Hard Work
If you thought you could pass off the work of selling your product to a marketing team and be done with it, think again! To really sell a product or service, marketers need a deep understanding of your business and your audience. They’ll need to work closely with you to make sure the strategy fits the situation. As with most things, you get what you give and if you don’t have time to invest, your marketing won’t be as effective.
3. Marketing Works Best in Conjunction with Other Strategies
Alas! Marketing is not a standalone solution. You know what works really well, however? Retargeting. Follow up. Subtle touches on and offline that remind someone that you’re there and have a great solution for their problem. Even if you have a great content marketing plan with all the funnels and lead magnets in the world, you’ll probably still need to network, seek PR opportunities, and find referral partners. Marketing may be the first touch, or the final touch, but either way, it’s going to take several to take someone from total stranger to happy client and you need to be prepared to connect with people in several ways.
4. Marketing Doesn’t Work if You Don’t Know Your Target Market
Who are you marketing to? If you don’t know, how can your marketing team find them and create content that appeals to them? Maybe you do know, but you don’t know them well. Before you ever start marketing, you should be talking to your target audience and learning more about them. What are their needs? Where do they hang out on and offline? How are they searching for solutions? When you know that, you can provide solutions that stop them in their tracks.
5. Marketing Takes Time
So you have a viable business, you know your target audience like the back of your hand, and you have a solid mix of outreach strategies. When will this pay off? Not instantly, sorry. Building a following online takes time. And then, even when you have dedicated followers, you’ll have to move them through the stages of conversion. Of course, it depends on your product or service. Someone is much more likely to casually purchase a $15 set of jewelry from an Instagram ad than to sign up for a monthly subscription service. And the more personal, expensive, or long term the service is, the harder the sale is going to be. So give it time and use the waiting period to play around with what works and what doesn’t in building a community and strong relationships.