The market over the past 9 months has been up and down, and extremely unpredictable. As we round the corner to 2021, you may be wondering what the appropriate way to market to your audience is. When there is overconfidence & over optimism in the market, value often takes backseat and consumers indulge. As we know, when the time gets tough, consumers often tighten their purse strings and value comes to the driving seat. Especially when the future is bleak and things are uncertain.
A good marketing plan can help launch a new business or grow an existing one. There are, however, numerous common marketing mistakes that happened during “bull” or “bear” markets. One of the biggest mistakes that we have encountered is that numerous business owners concentrate far less on marketing during good times falling into the trap of being in a comfort zone. Accordingly, these same business owners often panic when times begin to get tougher and begin implementing marketing strategies (often for the first time).
Do not wait until the last minute to implement effective communication strategies when economic outlook is bleak, or extremely positive. Finding a balance in your tone and understanding when to encourage spending or investing are pivotal considerations.
At My Social Biz, we have compiled a list of common mistakes in marketing during uncertain times. Be sure to avoid these faux paus when posting to your clientele:
- Not Marketing to a Defined Group: Find your target audience and gear your marketing plan to that audience. Trying to appeal to everyone typically does not work – know how the forecasted market will affect your target customer persona.
- Inconsistency in Your Marketing Efforts: You need to have the same look and feel across all of your ads, promotions, and overall marketing plan. Branding and consistency can be most important – this includes consistency and tonality.
- Lack of Diversification: Marketing on television, in print or on the Internet alone will reach only a portion of your potential customers. Plan to market creatively through a cross-section of media so that customers become familiar with your brand and your products at different times and in different places.
- Not Focusing on Repeat Business: Repeat business typically makes up 80 percent of customers in most businesses. Too often marketing campaigns are heavily focused on bringing in new customers and not building relationships with current ones.
- Starting Too Late: Time your marketing campaigns to coincide with new products, new services, seasonal sales or an upcoming event that will attract business. This typically means preparing well in advance.
- Not Having a Clear Marketing Message: Marketing messages that are contrived, confusing, too subtle or too long can easily miss the target market entirely. The most ingenious marketing plan is wasted if no one gets it.
- Going Overboard: If it sounds too good to be true it probably is. Too much hype will turn people away.
- Forgetting That Slow and Steady Wins the Race: If you blow your entire marketing budget on a Grand Prix ad, then what can you do next? Marketing means building a reputation over time through ongoing exposure.
- Not Getting Feedback: Test your marketing ideas and do focus groups. Don’t launch it without getting some feedback first.
- Making a Change for the Sake of It: Just because you are tired of your marketing plan doesn’t mean it isn’t working. Too many marketers make changes because they think they have too. Often a tried and true formula will keep working.