3 Things Small Business & Startups Get Wrong with Digital Marketing

3 Things Small Business & Startups Get Wrong with Digital Marketing

Are you a start up? A small business? Well chances are that you've left your digital marketing down the list a bit while you get your supply chain sorted out, your staff trained and your sales team prepped to start writing invoices.


We can do the "Google stuff" bit closer to time, because after all - it's really simple right? What could be simpler than sending out an email that shows off our goods or services to 1000 names we found online? And GoDaddy will get us a website done for $99, hosted for the next 2 years. And even you could manage to add a page on Facebook for our business. What else is there?


Well, a lot more actually. When you were doing your branding (I really, really hope you did a better job on your branding than simply designing a logo), your branding agency should have included all your digital marketing needs (yes, including a logo) as part of their package... only part of which was when and where could your logo and strap-line be used.


3 Things you get wrong with Digital Marketing


#1  Staying True to Your Brand


So number one on the list of things that go wrong is that your marketing activity begins to creep away from your branding. If the branding has been done properly, you should have a guide for things such as tone of voice, image style, key messaging, short, medium and long descriptions prepared for your business, along with your goods and services. All the features and benefits of what you do and how your goods and services can benefit potential clients will have been worked out in advance....right? Oh, and those potential clients....you've worked out who they are, where and why they buy, what turns them on, what turns them off? If this is all in your head, it might be an idea to write it down so that you can hand off campaigning to other staff members.


Once you have an overarching guide to your brand, campaigning becomes much more consistent and measurable.


#2 Consistency


When you are trying to build a presence online, consistency is key. Regular updates to a growing audience will build confidence in your brand and allow your business to be top of mind when someone is looking for a particular item or service you supply. Look to establish a program of news releasees - at least monthly, if not weekly. Each release will need to focus on one or two of the things you sell. Decide which one it is, reach into your branding backpack and work out the sort of person who might like to buy it and decide how you are going to reach them.


An ideal way to get into the discipline of doing this is by establishing a campaign program. Think about all the marketing activities you do and wrap them up in a campaign. Got a 1300 or 1800 number? That's a perpetual campaign right there. Got a price rise coming up? Better let everyone know so they can buy at the old price (a discrete campaign that wraps bad news in good news).


Here's a list of campaigns everyone needs:

  • Phone number - perpetual
  • Website contact forms - perpetual and discrete (see previous article)
  • News Releases/Blog - perpetually discrete

#3 Measurement


So your brand is all set, you've got all your campaign ducks lined up in a row and you're ready to commence live firing...how will you know if it's working?


Every campaign you run can have success/failure criteria applied to it. If you have sent an email out to those 1000 people mentioned earlier, what are you going to use to find out if they opened it or clicked on the offer? Outlook? Gmail?


If there is an offer to purchase on your website, will it be enough to know that 1000 emails went out and $10,000 came in? Who bought? Did that particular sale come from a click on your email or a click on your Facebook page? I am pretty sure you would want to know where your campaigning is effective? Often attributed to Henry Ford (but actually said by John Wanamaker), the phrase:


"Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don't know which half." John Wanamaker, 1838-1922


is now completely wrong. You can know where your advertising effort is being wasted - and then lose the bad stuff and concentrate on what works.




Getting this stuff done is really simple...seriously! You just need to have a long hard think about what your business is really about, what you're selling, who your selling it to and then schedule your list of campaigns. Of course, if you need help, we are right here. We would be delighted to hear from you.


About the Author


Mark Buckingham is a partner with Mark 2 Creative; a dynamic Sydney based integrated marketing agency. They are experts in branding and digital delivery and are able to seamlessly merge the two disciplines together to deliver cutting edge solutions that set them apart from the competition. their imaginative and innovative approach provides clients with a real presence in their marketplace that gives them exactly what they need from their marketing – more business.

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