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BusinessWhy Most Marketing Fails?

Marketing horror stories. I have heard some of them myself. There are stories about how someone tried a marketing technique, sent out a press release, or ran an ad, and “nothing happened”, “it didn’t work”.

In my 30 years of working in a manufacturing environment, I have heard many of these stories. As with most urban legends, there is usually more to the story than meets the eye.

Take heart because marketing isn’t all mysterious and once you understand how to put the pieces together, you’ll be in a better position to market your products or to oversee someone to handle the marketing for you.

Let’s begin by looking at the seven most common reasons that marketing fails:

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Lack Of Planning or No Planning

Most marketing efforts fail because there is no link between the marketing actions and the bottom-line business plan that drives revenue. This usually happens because those who are making decisions get caught up with a creative idea that isn’t doing much to the bottom line. They may be spending too much on driving the wrong customers to their stores or websites resulting in poor conversion rates. Marketing without a thoroughly thought-out plan is a disaster waiting to happen.

Inappropriate Actions

If there is no plan, then whatever marketing actions that are taken may conflict with each other. It’s unlikely they’ll reinforce each other or support a business plan goal. You will get disappointing results because of a “ready, fire, aim” approach where actions aren’t anchored to business objectives and targeted audiences. Attempting to copy a successful competitor’s marketing plan without understanding why it is working is also a dangerous approach.

Lack Of Clarity About The Market

In the current situation, mass marketing is dead. Blasting out marketing ads without a clear target is wasteful and unsuccessful. You cannot hit a target if you have not identified it. There is always a segment of potential customers who could become your ideal clients. You just need to get to know them and win them over.

Lack Of Clear Goals

If you do not have an upfront understanding of what your goals are or what you want to achieve, you won’t know when you will achieve them. Not only do your marketing actions need to be linked to specific goals, but each marketing action should be measurable. You cannot control what you cannot measure. Build in measurable goals upfront so that expectations are clear.

Unreasonable Expectations

Many become disappointed with marketing because they don’t understand the benchmarks for successful programs. For example, most direct-mail professionals are thrilled to get a one percent response rate. Yes, one percent!

But many small businesses send out direct mail and quit in disgust, expecting a response of 20 percent to 30 percent or more. It’s important to understand the benchmarks and to have realistic expectations so that you recognize your success once you have done it.

Unclear of How Marketing Works

Your chances of creating a successful marketing campaign are slim without some knowledge of how the pieces function and the process required to pull the pieces together. With the internet, new tools are emerging almost daily. You need to blend New Media and Web tools with traditional marketing to succeed in today’s marketplace. Understanding what makes marketing tick is essential whether you’re doing it yourself or delegating it to someone else.

Lack Of Clarity About The Market

In the current situation, mass marketing is dead. Blasting out marketing ads without a clear target is wasteful and unsuccessful. You cannot hit a target if you have not identified it. There is always a segment of potential customers who could become your ideal clients. You just need to get to know them and win them over.

Lack Of Clear Goals

If you do not have an upfront understanding of what your goals are or what you want to achieve, you won’t know when you will achieve them. Not only do your marketing actions need to be linked to specific goals, but each marketing action should be measurable. You cannot control what you cannot measure. Build in measurable goals upfront so that expectations are clear.

No Patience

“We ran an ad and nothing happened”. I am you have heard this before somewhere or have experienced it yourself.

Marketing research shows that it takes between seven to 30 views to make a sale. Customers will not buy until they have an urgent need. Until then, all you can do is create name recognition and a good reputation. That’s the value you are getting. Marketing has a lot in common with farming. You wouldn’t plant seeds one day, then go out the next day expecting to see full-grown plants. Seeds take time to grow and you cannot speed up the process. In the same light, marketing ‘seeds’ also take time to grow.

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