Marketing is a must for any business that cares about increasing revenue and scaling up. However, it’s a complex industry. Marketing practices and tactics are ever-changing, and it can seem like new industry-shattering trends emerge every month. It can be challenging for busy business owners to keep abreast of the latest tactics and to keep their knowledge sharp. Play that game for too long, and you’re bound to make lots of marketing mistakes that you’ll be paying for. 

For example, what worked some years back may be outdated by today’s standards. In this article, we will point out some marketing tactics you should let go of and what you can do instead.

1. Promotion-Centered Social Media Posts

Yes, social media marketing is important for businesses, thanks to the overwhelming number of users on various social platforms. However, you can kiss the benefits of social media marketing goodbye if all your posts are focused on sales and promoting your brand or services.

Social media allows businesses to connect intimately with their audiences for increased engagement, leads, traffic, and sales. Instead of salesy posts that will push your audience away, focus on strengthening your brand visibility and engagement using helpful content that your audience can relate to and engage with.

That’s not to say you shouldn’t use paid ads or incorporate some promotional posts into your social media. Just make sure that you still focus on posts that share helpful resources or showcase your team so your audience can truly get to know the brand behind the business. A great way to maintain some balance with your posts is to create a social media calendar that has all these posts planned out in advance.

2. Focusing on One Audience Base

You’ve probably heard about the dangers of selling to everyone. Irrespective of the products or services your business offers, your business cannot be for everyone. One common marketing mistake is to target everyone when promoting your product while hoping that those interested will be attracted to you and buy from you. Selling to everyone burns through your marketing budget with little to no results.

With that said, it’s okay to sell to more than one segment of your audience base. In fact, we highly recommend it. It’s rare that a brand has only one audience base, so as long as you conduct appropriate research to establish your target audiences and do everything to get to know them and what influences their purchase decisions, there’s nothing that should hold you back from targeting more than one group with your marketing. Where you get into trouble is assuming your product or service is for everyone. And as nice as that sounds, that is never the case. 

3. Focusing on Print Marketing

Brochures and printed newsletters used to be excellent marketing practices. Often these pieces were sent directly to someone’s mailbox, which was a great way to reach prospective customers directly. However, with the development of digital marketing and more buying being done online, businesses have expanded their marketing approaches, meaning print marketing is quickly losing its appeal.

Using print marketing occasionally for specific purposes in your environment may not be a bad idea, but do not rely heavily on this medium for ticking off your marketing goals. It may be a method you’re more familiar with, but that doesn’t mean your consumers are. If needed, take some online courses or webinars that show you the ins and outs of digital marketing. Or build an internal digital marketing team that can focus on these efforts.

4. Not Utilizing Inbound Marketing Tactics 

With digital marketing comes the practice of inbound marketing. Your inbound marketing strategy is comprised of digital marketing tactics, which include:

The beauty of inbound marketing is that when it’s implemented effectively, it brings your audience to you. It leads them back to your website, where you can convert those visitors to leads and engage and nurture them via your email marketing until they’re ready to purchase. 

This approach is effective because modern consumers aren’t huge fans of being pressured into their purchase decisions. They like to search online for solutions, perform their own research before buying, and feel like, ultimately, the decision is in their hands. Inbound marketing caters to that mentality, all while allowing businesses to stay top of mind with their consumers through consistent, permission-based outreach. 

In order to implement inbound marketing, you need the right tools to help you get the job done. Investing in a marketing automation tool like BenchmarkONE will help you convert website visitors to leads, keep track of their actions, and send them drip campaigns that will eventually convert them into customers. 

5. Blogging Without Distributing

Educating your customers with valuable content that answers their burning questions is excellent for building thought leadership, credibility, and engagement with your client base. But it is not enough to create blog posts and leave them sitting pretty on the blog section of your website. 

It is crucial to get the word out and let people see the content you are putting out. You can do this by sharing content on your social media pages, spreading the word via email newsletters, and optimizing your posts so they can be discovered in search engines. Below are some other non-traditional distribution tactics to try for your blog posts:

  • Send them to dormant prospects in an attempt to re-engage
  • Share them with a previous brand partner and ask them to share with their networks
  • Create a social post promoting the content and encourage your internal team to copy and paste it to their social networks
  • Add a link to the content in your email signature
  • Add them to your drip campaigns

6. Creating Generic Content

While we all agree that content is king, generic content won’t do your business any good and may even hurt your brand’s credibility. Ensure that the content you create is suitable for your audience – is it helpful to them in any way? Does it solve a problem? Does it provide any new information?

For best results, create a content library, segment your audience and target them with content that aligns with their position on the buyer’s journey. That way, whenever they come across your content, it strikes the right chord and helps build trust for your brand.

Also, don’t just stick to one kind of content type. Sure, blog posts and guest articles are crucial for your content strategy, but make sure you mix it up with infographics, whitepapers, eBooks, and video tutorials. People like to engage with content in various ways, so by keeping your strategy robust, you’ll create a more enjoyable experience.

You have to market your business to be successful, and not every strategy is going to work for your business. Conversely, mistakes in your marketing strategy can cost you potential customers. Prevent this by staying away from marketing strategies that are no longer effective, and update your marketing plan to what works today.