Why Your Marketing Sucks: An MCG Manifesto
Marketing is an acquired skill, and everyone is going to make mistakes along the way. That said, it’s wrong to dismiss marketing simply because you failed to see the desired results. Even the most powerful tools are useless in the hands of an inexperienced operator.
Which is all to say: Marketing doesn’t suck. But your marketing can suck. And here’s why:
1. You’ve convinced yourself it’s easy.
One of the illusions of modern marketing is that it just seems so dang easy, right? There are lots of low-cost, online marketing resources making claims like:
- “Build your own website in 10 minutes or less.”
- “You’re a click away from your perfect logo.”
- “Watch our webinar and start your own six-figure business in 10 easy steps.”
But here’s the catch – easy, cheap marketing is rarely good marketing. In business and in life, you generally get what you pay for.
2. You’ve siloed all of your efforts into different channels, and none of them “talk” to each other.
You have accounts on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Survey Monkey, Emma, Constant Contact, and a host of other platforms. But you don’t know how any of them relate to one another, much less how they are driving business. Starting with simple measures like integrating your email or website with your social media platforms can boost engagement across all channels.
3. You’ve hired multiple agencies to do different things.
You have contracts with a branding firm, a PR firm, a digital advertising company, an ad agency, and a boutique design firm, but none of them communicate or collaborate. (After all, why would they do that? They’re too busy competing to get all your business.) As a result, the continuity of your marketing suffers. And so does your wallet.
4. You’re not being consistent in your marketing efforts.
You won’t see results if your messaging isn’t frequent and consistent. Having every social media channel on standby is not a good use of your resources. You have the platform and you have the followers. Now, start communicating your ideas and converting prospects.
5. You’re paralyzed by metrics.
Remember all those accounts you have? Every single one of them is filled with valuable data, waiting to be mined for insights. But that doesn’t mean you should let spreadsheets and reports take over your life. That, my friends, is called “paralysis by analysis.” And it will seriously cripple your creativity and your productivity. The key to using metrics well is learning how marketing works, first. How else will you know which data points are important, and which are irrelevant?
6. You’re not spending enough time on original content.
Simply sharing and reposting doesn’t cut it anymore. Original content is what brings leads to your website. With the help of original content, you can demonstrate your industry expertise, thought leadership, and creativity. Your content is what separates you from your competitors.
7. You’re not networking or collaborating.
If networking isn’t a priority for your business, it should be. And we’re not just talking about attending events and reaching out to contacts for potential leads. Collaborating with similar businesses in your area can be an amazing way to build your reputation and establish meaningful professional relationships in your community. Remember: great marketing happens online and offline!
8. You’ve been overthinking your content.
You try to show your professionalism and competence in your content, but you’re overcomplicating it with technical language and data. It doesn’t matter what industry you’re in – people like simplicity. Jargon-heavy content is hard to digest for your readers and your SEO. To break up dense blocks of text and make the information more coherent, try incorporating visual elements like images or graphics.
9. You’re not taking advantage of visual elements.
The Internet loves pretty, flashy things. Whether it’s an aesthetically pleasing Instagram post, a beautifully designed infographic, or a tightly edited video, visual elements make marketing look and feel effortless. Video, in particular, is a magnet for new prospects and leads. Trust us on this one – visually dynamic marketing assets are worth your time and resources.
10. You’re posting consistently, but you’re not interacting with your followers.
So you’ve been posting on a daily basis and planning your content a month ahead? Congrats, you’re a marketing guru! Gary Vaynerchuk is shaking in his boots!
Just kidding. Posting regularly is only half the job. You also have to interact with your followers when they repost or comment on your content. Getting a like or a personalized reply from a company on social media is an incredibly powerful way to build engagement and customer loyalty. It shows that you’re connected, you’re listening, and you care.
If one or more of these mistakes resonated with you, don’t worry. The Internet remembers, but it also forgives. If you revisit your marketing efforts, identify which elements aren’t working, and create a new strategy based on your research, you can achieve your goals. If you are good to marketing, marketing will be good to you.