3 Common Marketing Mistakes that Sabotage Your Progress

by | Jul 6, 2019

When you’re growing a social enterprise, or any business, there are a few common mistakes you might be making. These mistakes can cost you a lot of time and money in the long run. The good news is, it’s never too late to make corrections.

Marketing Mistake #1: No Focus

It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day business operations and let your marketing slide. This is especially true for social entrepreneurs. Not only are you running your business, but you’re working towards creating an impact at the same time. You’re likely juggling too many balls, and marketing is one that gets set aside first.

Marketing can feel overwhelming, but if you have a plan in place, it becomes much easier. It’s OK to start small and build up your marketing plan over time. If you’re not sure where to start, determine who your audience is and where to find them. This will help narrow down which channels to focus on and which ones you can ignore.

Once you know who your audience is and where to find them, check out our Visibility Trifecta. It gives you an overview of the 3 main online marketing areas: Brand message, Outreach, and Inbound Marketing.

Set aside some time to create a simple action plan that you can stick to. Think about which marketing activities give you the best ROI and only focus on those.

Marketing Mistake #2: Paying for Advertising Too Soon

At first it seems like a straightforward concept: pay for ads and traffic will flow to your website. In theory that’s correct, but in reality it’s potentially a huge waste of money. Throwing money at advertising won’t solve your visibility problems.

Paying for advertising is only a good idea once your marketing systems are in place and working organically. This means refining your brand message, creating effective calls-to-action, and defining clear goals for your advertisements.

Too many small businesses justify running ads based on “brand awareness.” Don’t fall for this trap, unless you have a large national brand, like Coke or Nike. Before buying advertising, define tangible goals. Decide which metrics to track to know if your advertising is effective or not. This could be an increase in sales, phone calls, email sign-ups, etc.

Marketing Mistake #3: Not Asking for Feedback

As a founder or business owner, you can become too close to your business and lose sight of what matters to your customers. No matter what stage of business you’re in, it’s important to listen to your customers.

Actively asking for feedback can provide valuable insights and shows that you care. This can be done through surveys or 1-on-1 conversations. The responses you receive can help you craft your marketing messages or even give you new product ideas and improvements.

Final Thoughts: All of these mistakes are easily corrected. It comes down to spending time getting to know your customers, and letting that knowledge inform your marketing plan.

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Go deeper into the Visibility Trifecta to give your social enterprise a quick boost in visibility. Each day covers one specific area and includes action items, so you'll know exactly what you need to do.

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