Digital marketing works best when all of its parts work together seamlessly. Yet, many marketing ideas for small business owners are executed in the wrong way, hurting the your ability to market effectively.
When a your marketing apparatus is out of sync, it hurts that business’s growth potential. You miss out on new opportunities, and squander your hard-earned relationships with past customers. On the other hand, if you have a business that can keep everything together has better earnings and a much higher potential to scale.
The difference between marketing success and failure is knowledge and execution. When you learn how to do things the right way and follow through with best practices, your marketing ideas can help you flourish.
To help you avoid going down the wrong path, here are five top myths that lead small business owners astray and hurt their chances at marketing effectively.
Myth 1: Digital Marketing Is All About Finding New Leads and New Customers
Most business owners have heard this old chestnut: “It’s cheaper to keep existing customers than find new ones.” And it’s true! You may have also heard the statistic that it’s 6-7 times more expensive to earn a new customer than to keep your existing ones.
What business owners should get out of that fact is that they should put in just as much effort — if not multiple times more effort — in marketing to their existing customers. One study showed that if you’re able to retain just 5% of your existing customers, then you can increase profits anywhere from 25% to 95%.
So don’t neglect marketing to past customers when creating an online marketing strategy. Remember that you don’t always have to fight for general brand and product awareness — things that attract new customers. Instead, develop retention campaigns that remind existing customers about the value of your services that brought them to you in the first place.
For instance, you can develop content purely focused on your standout brand values like environmentalism. Then, you promote that content to a marketing list of past customers through email, social, and possibly even paid ads. You can also offer them information that leads to cross-sell purchases, such as encouraging a new car buyer to come back to the dealership for oil changes.
“60-80% of customers who describe themselves as satisfied do not go back to do more business with the company that initially satisfied them,” says Forbes. So remind people about what brought them to you, and encourage them to make repeat purchases that increase their overall customer lifetime value.
Myth 2: Inbound Marketing and Content Aren’t Worth the Time
The main idea of inbound marketing is that if you create enough great content, people will naturally find you all on their own. Compared to traditional advertising where you try to find the customer first and get them hooked, an inbound approach can sound completely backward. After all, what if you spend all this time, money and effort on content and no one shows up?
In truth, outbound advertising is the method having trouble proving its value in an all-digital world. Only 7% of people who see advertising online view it positively. 53% of people use ad blockers, which means they may not see any ads online at all.
On the other hand, creating content that attracts inbound customers offers them value and gets them thinking about your brand. According to the Content Marketing Institute, effective content gets audiences engaged. This engagement helps people recall brands better and develops relationships that encourage purchases.
Altogether, content marketing costs 62% less than outbound marketing, yet it is able to generate three times as many leads. With returns like that, it’s worth every bit of effort!
Myth 3: SEO Is Just Using a Bunch of Keywords
Search engine algorithms have gotten smarter. They know that if they just pull up the top search results based on keywords alone, search engine users will get miffed at the low quality of content they find.
These days, 18% of first-page search results don’t even have the exact match keyword anywhere in the body. Instead, search engines like Google say they prioritize informative, well-written content when weighing which sites to rank.
So stop using keyword stuffing, and stay up to date with SEO best practices. You can read Google’s handy, rather comprehensive SEO guide to help you get started.
Myth 4: I Don’t Need to Be on Social Media if I Have a Website (And Vice-Versa)
Digital marketing for small businesses needs to work as a complete package. That’s because every digital channel offers different strengths, weakness, opportunities and capabilities.
Social media, for instance, has millions of monthly users in the U.S., equivalent to 69% of the total population. Having a social media profile serves as a combination message board for your business content and an interactive billboard that encourages parts of these huge audiences to engage with your brand. Over two-thirds of people now use social messaging to get customer support, for instance. People can also review your business and share your content easily with friends.
All these benefits come with the added ability to direct new traffic back to your site and capture new leads. Therefore, having a strong social media presence enhances the business goals of your website; it definitely doesn’t make your website less important or redundant.
Myth 5: You Can Measure the Success of Marketing Ideas For Small Business Owners by How Much Traffic or How Many Followers You Have
This last myth persists simply because it means less work for us as business owners. After all, numbers like traffic and brand followers are easy to look at when measuring marketing success.
But you don’t just want traffic and engagement. You want qualified, high-value customer segments to be visiting and engaging.
To make that happen, you need to pay close attention to your customer demographic data for each campaign. It will tell you who is most likely to convert based on actual transaction data — not just views and visits. Then, you can mold your digital marketing strategies to appeal specifically to these high-value customer segments.
Without this type of segmentation and campaign measuring, you’re basically inviting online window shoppers to check out your brand. This can make you feel popular but lead to little revenue.
Consider this premise and all the above ones we’ve laid out above when you implement your great digital marketing ideas for small business owners in 2018. Doing so will help you squeeze as much as you can out of your marketing while encouraging huge growth.