Some of our most exquisite murders have been domestic, performed with tenderness in simple, homey places like the kitchen table.
- Alfred Hitchcock
And, we would add, on the desks of marketers who are trying to attract leads with outdated strategies.
Alfred Hitchcock always had a way with suspense. Often his murder scenes occurred in mundane, simple ways that the audience would never have guessed in the beginning.
In your effort to convert contacts to leads to buyers, are you inadvertently killing your chances at a smooth flow from stranger to delighted customer? Wondering why you can’t seem to generate the leads you need to succeed?
We’ll make an attempt to alleviate the suspense by sharing four common hazards to your best efforts to cultivate and convert potential customers.
You’re already wearing more than one hat running your business. Crunched for time is an understatement. You’re overwhelmed by your to-do list and by the daunting task of keeping up with best-practice marketing techniques that could grow your business.
Your business needs to be promoted, so you've rolled up your sleeves and worked on strategies you hoped will work... but you aren’t’ seeing a good return on investment.
Related: Get a Free Internet Marketing Audit
Are You on the Wrong Track?
New idea number one that marketers often try first is social media, because your instincts tell you it looks like a good opportunity, and you’re somewhat familiar with it. However, putting in the effort to gain a boatload of followers won’t do you any good if there’s no engagement or conversion of followers to customers. Who cares if you have 10,000 followers if none of them buy from you?
You may have tried blogging because you read that it's a great way to rank your site higher on Google and boost your traffic. You've written posts loaded with value, but your effort is not paying off. Blogging can feel like giving an impressive presentation to a theater of empty seats. Oh, except for that one seat in the front row. Your mother reads your blogs and even leaves an occasional comment...
Your sales aren’t what they could be because your marketing isn’t what it could be. An intractable problem? The good news is that it is indeed tractable if you follow some market-tested words of advice.
Shifting your budget to engage in more internet marketing does take a bit of savvy and know-how, so listen up!
1. Marketing With Yourself in Mind.
The last person to whom you want to appeal is YOU. It’s about the LEAD, not you.
Trade in your Me-focused content for rigorously lead-focused content.
And yet, many businesses still insist on talking about themselves. They pack their website with their mission statements, their staff bios, their history, and their news updates, blog they think are interesting. That’s not all bad, but save it for later in the story.
Most people aren't interested in the things that you find fascinating. When they visit your website, the only thing on their mind is finding out if your solution is right for their problem.
Tip: When you write, concentrate on showing benefits. Design and write with a firm image of a viewer incessantly asking, “What’s in it for me?” Speak to him the same way you’d speak to your hot prospect over lunch. Try coming up with a fictional person who represents your ideal loyal customer and seat them in the audience.
Related: 4 Simple Steps to Content Marketing
2. Wasting Time on Strategies That Don’t Fit Your Company’s Growth Stage
In your research to find ways to market online, you probably read somewhere that you should use blogging as a way to increase traffic to your site. It’s a good way to showcase your expertise, and when your target audience Googles their questions, they land on your site, right?
Well, it’s not that simple. Just because you write about something germane to your product or service doesn’t mean people are going to automatically find your blog posts. It takes awhile to build credibility and authority, two of the many criteria Google and other search engines use to decide if your site should come in as number 1 or number 328.
Blogging on your own site should be part of a long term plan to increase your online presence and visibility. By all means, start blogging and pay attention to optimization. Just don’t expect it to give you an instant bang for your buck. The payoff from regular blogging will come much later. The same goes with social media. Your time and energy might be better spent working on other marketing strategies first, rather than spending to offer tons of valuable information for an audience who isn't there.
Tip: Don’t obssess on social media, and don’t feel pressured to blog frequently if your subscriber base isn’t large enough yet.You may first want to build a bigger foundation by growing your email list. Try guest blogging on sites you know your audience reads, and include a link to a customized page that leads a visitor in further.
3. Neglecting or Underestimating Email Marketing
The average person checks their email 30 times a day. Email remains more effective at measurably increasing sales than all of the social media channels combined.
And yet, many companies still only use email to let their subscribers know every 3 months when a sale is going on. Sometimes all you’ll see is an image with a clothes rack that says, “Dresses 30% off.” You can bet their emails are being filtered through straight to the junk folder.
Tip: If you can only master one thing when it comes to marketing, then you should master how to craft sharp and engaging emails that sell. Every email should be valuable for a reader who opens it. Email frequently so your audience can build a relationship with you. Also, give your contacts an easy out if they don’t want your emails.
4. Trying to Grow Your Email List by Asking People to “Sign up for Updates.”
This goes back to not marketing with your audience in mind. Nobody cares about being notified when there’s a sale or when you are having an event. They care about finding information they need. People want stuff, so give them some of your goodies!
Tip: Make each email unique and specialized. Offer a lead magnet in exchange for visitors’ email addresses. Create a piece of downloadable content, such as an e-book or a template, and offer it for free on your site. Study your audience by reading their comments on social media and on blogs, and figure out what information or what tool would interest them. What problem could you solve? What would delight them? Then send an email with a link where they can go get it.
Stop giving those leads the heave-ho. Be a gracious, welcoming host instead of a serial lead-killer. Whether you like it or not, internet marketing is only increasing in influence and importance, and will stay that way for the foreseeable future.
Oh, there’s more… much more to internet marketing than what we’ve discussed here. Now you know a couple of strategies to focus on and what to save for later. Internet marketing does take work, but it’s far better to explore in the right direction rather than spinning your wheels for too long.
Get a Free Internet Marketing Assessment Today!
We will help you troubleshoot everything that's holding you back from generating more traffic, leads, and customers through your website.