Marketing plan mistakes you can avoid, and how. Posted on April 7, 2017 (April 6, 2018) by Hannah Ditto Effective sales and marketing plan has both short AND long-term strategies in place. Short-term marketing efforts can help give your business the infusions of cash it needs to run. But to be truly successful, you also need to start sowing the seeds of your long-term marketing plan. A quality website is a key part of that long term plan. Here are some of the top mistakes we see when it comes to your long-term marketing strategy. #1 | “What longterm marketing plan?” Seems fairly obvious that we should all have one, right? But we’re humans and we often make decisions that aren’t based on logic. Why yes, I will have that third doughnut. No, it’s fine. I can start my exercise plan tomorrow. Usually, these decisions aren’t intentioned. We plan to be strategic someday. But we don’t sit down and make that strategic plan. And that lack of plan can be ultimately fatal for our marketing efforts. “The world is becoming more inbound. It’s growing more authentic, less interruptive.” Hubspot’s State of Inbound, 2016 Think about it from your own experience. Why did you make your last major purchase? Was it because someone called you during dinner and finally convinced you that today was the day you needed to buy that thing? Or was it brand loyalty? Was it that you’d been looking for a while, and you were finally ready? The landscape of reaching your customer is always changing. But one of the biggest changes in a decade is the rise of inbound marketing. Moving from a mentality of cold calling and paid advertising to an approach where you develop a position of expertise to attract an audience. Then you stay in touch with that audience. Then you’ve already got their loyalty by the time they are ready to buy. We build the website foundation for your inbound marketing efforts. In that process, we help you clarify your vision – whether that’s drilling down on your target audience or clarifying the way you communicate your product message. #2 | Efforts without strategy “I have been doing things for well over a year and I haven’t seen any return. Marketing must be a waste of time/money/both.” Making an effort without putting a strategy behind it is arguably just as bad as making no effort. Your time is valuable. From the get-go, we ask questions to start honing your strategy. We put data tracking in place to help you learn more about how that strategy is working on your site. We help you analyze that data to identify the right fit for your specific situation. #3 | Making big efforts instead of small, consistent ones. This is an easy trap to fall into. Everyone starts January with high expectations, right? But consistency is what helps you stay in front of your customers, so you’re ready when they are. Just because it looks consistent on the outside doesn’t mean it has to be consistent on the inside. Especially if you are a small business, it can be a struggle to do something on a regular basis. We can help set up automation and schedules on your site. What looks like regular TLC is actually a single, focused effort that set you up for months to come. Or we can apply regular content TLC to your site for you. We offer blog management content that’s engaging and original. #4 | Expecting results without time or effort Lots of people expect that one minute they’re launching their site, and the next minute the lead harvest is rolling in! Or, they plant that site, and never do anything to it ever again and – voila, it’s producing something useful. No. In the real world, if you do that, you’re growing compost & disappointment. That’s it. Mistaking your website for a short term strategy means that you’re definitely going to get discouraged and give up before you see results. We help you set realistic site expectations & goals, based on experience working with a variety of business owners. We can save you time and money by steering you away from ineffective or misleading promotion strategies. #5 | Not diversifying “The only marketing that works is (word of mouth/networking groups/pay-per-click/etc.)” It doesn’t feel like a mistake. You’re probably partially right. But how many people do you know that are still saying: the only marketing that works is the Town Crier? Or even: placing a newspaper ad? Especially when it comes to your long-term strategy, it’s important not to put all your eggs in one basket. These strategies take time, and it only takes one disruptive event to render some strategies completely useless. When we build a site, we invest in quality infrastructure. We don’t cut corners where you’ll never know any better. We consider marketing strategy, digital strategy, business goals, design, and technology infrastructure. So that when the time comes to change directions, your site is ready to handle that. Feeling lost? Marketing isn’t your thing anyway? Contact us today. We can help you lay the foundation for your future success.