Sorry to say, but you're not likely to have a highly successful marketing plan right out of the box; there will probably be quite a bit of learning as your marketing techniques evolve. The message of your marketing plan should be clear to you before you even get started and should be aimed to elicit a response from your audience.Â To help get a good start to developing a lucrative marketing plan, here are seven big and all too common mistakes:
Mistake #1:Â Keep that professional front
A professional appearance and language is important in any marketing campaign but the acceptable levels of professional decorum vary greatly depending upon the industry.Â The language of a children's birthday party service should sound a lot different than the marketing of a law firm.Â This being said there is no rule that a law firm can't still be slightly playful in their language, at the very least to some extent a more casual forum will be more inviting to clients possibly intimidated with the prospects of selecting a law firm.
Also a common mistake made in business marketing is the overuse or underuse of the lingo of your industry.Â It is important to find that fine line between overusing confusing terms or sticking to the proprietary terms and leaving your readers lost.Â Over simplifying can be interpreted as dumbing-down to your readers and really may be more offensive than helpful.
Mistake #2:Â The more readers the better
This couldn't be farther from the truth.Â Blast marketing at as many people as possible won't necessarily translate into new customers.Â They key to successful marketing is to find a specific niche market and give them what they want.Â This does sound simple, but it may take a bit of work and research to discover where the niche market truly lies and how to best reach them.Â Once the appropriate market is understood, then the original concept of the more readers the better may actually apply.
Mistake #3:Â Speak to the group
Big mistake.Â Though you are speaking to a wide group of readers, never speak to the reader as if they are part of a faceless group.Â The best marketing plans will make the reader feel as if you're speaking directly to them.Â Using phrases like, "Dear valued clients" or "you all" sets readers in frame of mind that will make them less likely to feel important to you.
Mistake #4:Â The readers need to see the value
Marketing campaigns frequently tend to lose focus on their actual goals; rather they blast what they think people want to hear.Â Showing readers the value of your product or service likely wont convince your readers, demonstrating your value is more impactful.Â Including things like client testimonials or reviews of your product or service is priceless. If costs prohibit you may want to consider actually giving a little to get a lot, as in a free gift or a special discount offer for your readers.
Mistake #5:Â My marketing is about me
This couldn't be farther from the truth.Â Marketing is about the customer and how your unique product or service will suit them.Â It is the job of a successful marketing piece to demonstrate how the prospective customer can't live their lives without you.
Mistake #6:Â People just want the facts
If you're lucky enough to capture the attention of your readers, it is so important to showcase useful information channeled through a unique personality or voice to your business. Sure the readers are there for information purposes, but reading charts, graphs or blocks of numerical information is just plain boring. People inevitably don't just want the facts, they want entertainment or at the very least a captivating flow of language to keep them reading to listen to what you have to say.Â Make an appeal to emotions to involve the reader dimensionally with your words.
Mistake #7:Â The goal of the message should be to get clients
Okay, the goal of marketing is to obtain new clients this is true, but it should not be the message of your marketing plan.Â No one likes being "sold-to."Â Successful marketing should be sharing information, providing value to the prospective customer and building a relationship of some sort with the receiver.Â There are two objectives to focus on if you plan to succeed in your marketing plan:
- What do you want to get out of this particular marketing message?Â Is the goal of this piece to provide information or to build name recognition?Â Are you asking them to come to you when they need you or are you showing them the immediate need for your services? Are you asking them to see you as a source for the solutions to their questions?
- What do you want the audience to get out of this particular marketing message?Â Are you trying to evoke an emotional response prompting them to do what? Do you want them to be informed but concerned so that they contact you for further information?
There are plenty more mistakes to be made in marketing but these seven are some of the most frequented ones out there.Â No need to spend precious time and money on ineffective marketing plans.
Matthew Toren is an Award Winning Author, Serial Entrepreneur, and Investor. He Co-Founded YoungEntrepreneur.com along with his brother Adam. Matthew is co-author of the newly released book: Small Business, Big Vision: “Lessons on How to Dominate Your Market from Self-Made Entrepreneurs Who Did it Right” and also co-author of Kidpreneurs.