Marketing can help build your business, but it can’t solve all your problems. Here are five things marketing can’t do for you.
I thought I’d clear up some marketing misconceptions in this two-part series. This post is about what marketing can’t do.
While there’s no doubt that a solid marketing program can grow your business, it can’t fix everything. Below are five things marketing can’t do for you.
1. Marketing cannot make you an overnight success. Just because you start a marketing program doesn’t mean you’ll immediately see your business explode. Marketing is about getting your name in front of your target market on a regular basis until they finally decide to give you a try.
With this in mind, if you are in trouble right now. sales are down, new business isn’t taking off as you planned, depending on how bad the trouble is, the marketing program may not be enough to save you. A successful marketing program takes time to work and most likely some money as well. If you’re panicking about one (or more likely, both), you may need to start looking for other options.
2. Marketing is not about doing something once and forgetting about it. The test of the best marketers. And testing. And testing.
For example, maybe your website isn’t converting visitors into customers as well as it should. You can hire a copywriter to tweak it for you. You can experiment with different elements to see what increases your conversion rate. This is one way to use testing. You can also test different titles, different offers, etc.
3. Marketing can’t fix a bad experience. This is big. If your customers have a bad experience with your products or services or your customer service representatives or salespeople, etc., then so be it. Worse yet, not only have you lost the customer for good, but that customer will likely tell others about their bad experience. So now you’ve lost more potential customers too.
Marketing can get people going, but it can’t ensure they’ll have an experience they’ll want to repeat. Before you assume more marketing is what you need, take a moment and make sure your current customers are truly happy with your business.
4. Marketing can’t fix a broken business. Like #3, marketing can’t fix cash flow or staffing problems.
Okay, I can hear you all saying. “Of course, marketing can’t fix cash flow problems. Do you think we are stupid?’ My answer is no, I don’t think you are stupid at all. I think what happens is that sometimes you get so caught up in the day-to-day challenges of running a business that you can’t see the forest for the trees.
Let me explain. Let’s say you have a business that is struggling with cash flow. The first thing that comes to mind can be to boost marketing. After all, the idea behind marketing is to increase revenue. On the surface that makes sense. However, if you look a little closer, what you may find are expenses that are unpredictable or not receiving invoices on time. So what you need to fix are your accounting problems, not change your marketing.
5. Marketing can’t get people to buy things they either don’t want or can’t afford. It doesn’t matter how great your product or service is; if you’re selling to people who either don’t have the interest or the means to buy it, your marketing will fail, no matter how brilliant it is.
So basically it all comes down to this. before you decide you need more marketing, take a few moments to make sure marketing is really the right solution for your business.
Creative Exercise — Reality Check
Before launching a new marketing program, take some time to analyze what’s really going on in your business. Do you really need a marketing program or is it your problem?
- You cannot close the connections you have.
- You don’t submit invoices on time or follow up on unpaid bills.
- Your customers are not satisfied with the product or service.
- Your customers have a bad experience with technical support, or something else in the process isn’t working.
- Your target market is incorrect.
- You are no longer passionate about what you do.
- Your business has too many expenses.
And so on. Basically, I just want you to make sure that marketing is really your thing before you start doing it.
If you want to grow your business, you need to consistently market your business. But if you’re using marketing as a communication tool for some other issue, you may be in trouble.
Disclaimer. The content on this page is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, tax or accounting advice. If you have specific questions about any of these topics, seek the advice of a licensed professional.