Are You Committed to Your Marketing?
You’ve dabbled with content, you’ve mused over campaigns, you’ve posted a little on social media, and you’ve handed a small portion of your budget to someone in marketing…but maybe you aren’t seeing the return you wanted.
The truth is there’s a big difference between trying out different marketing activities and cold, hard commitment to the marketing cause.
The best marketing results aren’t going to come from dipping your toes in. Marketing can make all the difference between whether your company succeeds and thrives and whether it fights and struggles to survive.
There are plenty of reasons to rear back and not actually commit, from budgets and time to a lack of resources or expertise, but there’s one real reason to say “yes” — marketing works.
It’s important to remember that marketing is rarely a flash fire success, but rather a slow burn. It works through steady commitment, belief in the system, and the knowledge that you are building for a sustainable future for your business.
How committed are you to your marketing really?
Of all the moving parts of business, marketing methods don’t really get a fair trial. It’s natural to invest in something and then feel frustrated when you don’t see a return right away. It’s like ordering a package and waiting months for it to show up. You’re going to wonder if you wasted your money, and you are going to lose faith that your package will ever arrive.
But marketing doesn’t work like that.
Marketing is not a package that arrives at your door, but a foundation that you build from the ground up. A better metaphor would be that perhaps you have put a few beams up and added a brick or a window, but you don’t understand why your house isn’t keeping you warm and dry. Random acts of marketing will peter out, whereas a solid long-term marketing plan is a systemic approach that will eventually lead to success.
It’s important to take a good look at your company and question whether you are really committing to marketing or whether you are cutting corners, trying to take the quick path, or shuffling marketing to the bottom of your pile. Marketing works best when it’s run consistently and when it has a clear objective. Look at these stats from the National Sales Executive Association to illustrate a point:
- 2% of sales are made on first contact.
- 3% of sales are made on second contact.
- 5% of sales are made on third contact.
- 10% of sales are made on fourth contact.
- 80% of sales are made between the fifth to the twelfth contact.
Those figures say a lot about the power of continuous communication with potential customers, and this is what marketing is. It’s a way of engaging, connecting, communicating and building trust with your target market.
Marketing can become a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you build it, they will come. The more you keep growing your marketing efforts, the more your business will grow with time. Remember, this means you need a solid and structured marketing plan.
What’s stopping you from being truly committed?
Businesses who know deep down that they aren’t fully committing to their marketing efforts may find it helpful to question why. What is it about marketing that makes you pull back? Is it a bad previous experience? A lack of understanding of how marketing successfully works? Feeling like you don’t have the budget? Or not trusting in the ROI?
Not trusting in the system
For those who feel like marketing hasn’t worked for them before and therefore isn’t worth the money, time and effort, it’s worth knowing that practice truly does make perfect when dealing with marketing. There will be setbacks, there will be bumps in the road, and there might even be disasters. This is all just a part of the journey. Google algorithms change, campaigns can fall flat, and progress can be slow.
However, staying committed and continuing to contribute to your marketing efforts will work like a numbers game — the more you hit, the higher the chance you have of scoring. The more you keep feeding into your marketing, the more adept you get at understanding what works for you (and what doesn’t), and the more you can tweak your plan to improve those leads and conversions.
Marketing is a mixture of art, science, statistics and psychology, so it’s not surprising that you would feel overwhelmed going into it as a business. Fortunately, help is out there. There are tons of truly great marketing tools and marketing agencies who can guide you through the maze of marketing.
Whether you’re looking to learn or looking for someone to take it off your hands altogether, you can go for a full marketing service, or you can just get help with the more technical aspects. SEO (search engine optimization), content creation, social media, link building, email marketing, outreach — these are all moving parts that make up your marketing plan.
By outsourcing and automating wherever you can, you will reduce the overwhelm and stop your business from being in a freeze state when it comes to moving forward with marketing.
Not having the budget
This is a common one, especially for new or struggling businesses. Maybe you understand the importance of marketing but just don’t feel like you have the capital to put behind it. This can be frustrating, as investing in marketing when business is slow is paramount for turning the trend upwards.
The truth is, if you want your business to grow, you’ll need to set aside time and money for marketing. Knowing how much you should be allocating to marketing and having a priority plan can help you to achieve base goals rather than squandering your marketing budget.
Remember, content marketing costs around 62% less than traditional marketing activity. There’s also marketing you can do yourself if you truly don’t have the financial capacity to bring in the experts. Being active on social media, collaborating with other businesses, repurposing old content and applying for business awards — all of these ideas will take time but won’t drain your bank account.
The benefits of doubling down on marketing
There are lots of benefits that come with doubling down on your marketing efforts. For a start, it’s the commitment you need to take to ensure long-term success. Take a look at these benefits you get from turning up the dial on marketing.
Start getting answers
Marketing is data rich. There’s always something to learn. Whether your campaign was a rip-roaring success or whether your social media outreach fell flat, they all add up to a learning curve that can be applied to all future efforts.
When you double down on marketing and start to track everything, you learn so much about your target audience and their behavior. 72% of marketers improve engagement with content marketing.
This is all essential information to collect so you can start figuring out what methods work best for your business and where your future efforts should go. Focus on a few strategies at once so you can see the clear results.
Reduce wasted efforts
Once you know what’s working and what isn’t, you can reduce wasted efforts and start investing more heavily in those marketing techniques that are giving you good growth.
For example, SEO has a 14.6% conversion rate compared to 1.7% for traditional outbound marketing methods like direct mail. This is a much better plan than throwing everything at the wall sporadically and seeing what sticks. Learn what works, skip what doesn’t and learn how to stream your marketing efforts in the right direction.
More growth, more customers
At the end of the day, no business can survive without marketing, so you either put your all into it now and start making those results work for you, or you putter along, risk losses and wind up having to do it later. Grow your marketing, grow your name and grow your sales. This is the award-winning formula for those who commit to marketing.
Brandee Johnson is the owner and CEO of LimeLight Marketing. After a 15 year run in corporate America, working for leading brands Deluxe Corporation and LEGO, Johnson followed her long-time dream of starting her own company and founded LimeLight Marketing, a brand, digital marketing and development agency that helps brands foster customer trust and grow market share. Since then, the agency has grown rapidly to serve companies across the US.