Want to generate more new customers from a business website? Would generating more leads and sales help your business? Then stop doing the following 4 things to improve small business marketing results:
- Stop obsessing over Google rankings and search engine positions! Focus on achieving business goals of new customers and sales. Instead of asking your marketing team about where your website is ranked in Google or being satisfied with an SEO marketing company telling you they did their job because your website is achieving high rankings, ask how many new customers leads were generated. Rather than obsessing over search engine ranking positions and chasing the latest effects of search engine algorithm changes, focus on achieving measurable business goals! The best goals are based on revenue. Determine the amount of business you want to generate or the monthly number of leads you want to increase. Then, rather than measuring success by search engine ranking position, measure progress and success based on whether the strategies and tactics generated the amount of revenue being sought compared to the amount being invested. Verify enough quality leads are being obtained and converting into customers and ensure enough quality leads are arriving from the traffic. Correct what is not working and do more of what works!
- Stop wasting money on outdated print advertising that doesn’t work, is not measurable or is not producing as much revenue as investing in digital marketing opportunities. Not sure how to find out how much revenue your print advertising produces? Then start by including a means to track every print ad. If you can’t track it, don’t do it! Tracking from print ads can be accomplished by including a unique code on coupons and then keeping track of the redemption rate or by using other measurable offers. If number of redemptions does not generate more customers needed to recoup the cost of the ad and reach revenue goals then it is not working. An example of an easy way to track print ads for restaurant marketing is to include a QR code on printed coupons and then craft a unique landing page for each channel the ad is appearing in. Add a valuable offer to the landing page and you’ll not only know how many people found the ad enticing enough to click through the QR code itself, but you’ll also be able to measure how effective the offer converts visitors into customers or leads. I like this model because even if the print ad does not change for a period of time (often a year or at least a quarter for print publications on Maui) the business owner has the opportunity to adjust the offer displayed on the landing page. Of course, you’ll need to think through the Call to Action associated with the QR code to ensure flexibility, but that is easier than being stuck for 6 to 12 months with wasted marketing budget invested on an under performing print advertisement!
- Stop chasing 'shiny objects' or the latest deal of the day. Don’t change direction every time a competitor does something different or whenever a new sales rep walks into your business or calls to tell you (sell you!) the latest shiny new marketing tool or process. If you didn’t have it in your business marketing budget and it doesn’t fit into an existing strategy to reach your business goals, just say NO. Yes, it is important to stay on top of trends and utilize the latest technologies and tactics that may be working for other businesses or to pursue time sensitive offers. Unfortunately, far too often, small business owners simply chase these tactics because it is easier, seems like less work and is less time consuming than investing real effort toward establishing goals, a strategy to reach the goals and then staying on point with the agreed upon tactics or tasks. Compare the long term benefits from time spent creating quality content in the form of an ebook or list of the top 10 questions answered and place on a website with landing page and calls to action promoted on numerous social channels versus creating a one shot print ad or granting interviews for articles about you in a single publication with a short run duration.
- Stop obsessing over Social Media Friend, Follower and Fan Counts - Facebook Friend or Fan Counts, Twitter Follower Counts mean little in terms of real business value or success. Do you think a business investor will consider your Facebook Friends or Twitter Followers as an asset with increasing value? Instead of getting caught up in meaningless ego metrics widely hyped measurement metrics, implement a business model that leverages social media marketing to achieve specific business goals and ROI! Stop getting caught up in the tactics and terms being bantered about by so many so called social media consultants dependent on the silly model of increasing friend and follower counts! Considering Facebook Friends and Twitter Followers can be easily purchased for pennies on the dollar, those metrics are not meaningful for business and agencies promoting their value or suggesting as a measurement metric should be avoided. Fact is those counts and numbers are not worthwhile as business metrics alone and are usually only simple metrics used by Social Media consultants to fool their prospect by claiming they can show growth to prove they are doing their job. Before you sign up for an outsourced social media management contract, make sure the performance will be measured by the number of leads and sales are being generated or other meaningful business metrics ideally tied to revenue growth. Even claiming brand exposure is measurable by social media counts is misleading and most often presents a false sense of success. Focus on attracting prospects and advocates for your business and then communicate with the audience acquired by keeping them engaged with thoughtful relevant content that addresses their questions, helps them solve business problems, lets them do something faster or better or provides answers to business questions they have.
Based on your goals, create a marketing and advertising budget based on business goals. Use the budget with goals to track and drive everything you do with advertising and marketing. If an opportunity is not within the budget and isn’t going to be purposeful in reaching a goal, then just say NO and don’t do it. Download a FREE eBook to Learn How Closed-Loop could increase your business ROI: