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Business marketing myths debunked

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by Candice Sealey Tue, Sep 23, 2014

We are said to be experiencing tough economic times. Business is slow, but a consultant, such as myself, suggests that you need to step up your marketing to exploit opportunities that may have been created by your competitors’ inaction; you look at me as if I just landed from Mars. Why? Because it’s hard to make good decisions when you have bad information. Unfortunately, there are many business marketing myths that are holding back business owners and marketers.{{more}}

Myth: I have a business idea, I got the capital and products, found a location, opened my doors, so now I need ads.

Reality – Question: What’s your selling proposition? How are you different from the competition? What’s the company’s mission and vision? Not sure? You want to advertise, but you can’t answer these questions? Before you air adverts, devise a marketing plan – it’s the heart of the business, the basis from which all other operational and management plans are derived. An effective marketing plan will boost your sales and increase your profit margins. Your vision and mission stipulates where the business is heading and its key purpose.

Myth: Advertising and marketing are the same Reality: Absolutely not! Advertising, which is just one type of promotional activity, is only a small part of the whole marketing picture. Advertising means buying space or time to relay a message. Planning and research are needed to make sure your business gets the best bang for your marketing buck.

Myth: Social media is not for Business to Business Marketing

Reality: Some businesses are hesitant to use social media, because they see it only as a place for business-free downtime. Whilst this may be the case, be reminded that social media is all about people and behind every business is a group of people; if a CEO is on Twitter/FB to take a break and he comes across a company he likes, he’ll remember it. Most importantly, social media presents an opportunity to put a face on a business and connect on a personal, deeper level.

Myth: Having a logo means branding

Reality: Branding is more about what people feel when they think of your business. A brand is everything you are, the value you deliver and the total client experience – what they’re feeling when they see your logo, what the image stands for, more so than the image itself; e.g. if you give clients a great customer experience and really look after them, they will have a positive association with your business. It works the other way as well. Every image you project needs to consistently reflect the personality of your business.

Myth : My nephew/son/friend can build my website for almost nothing

Reality: Unless they are a professional in the field, absolutely not! Your website is the foundation for all of your inbound marketing activities and it needs to be created as a marketing tool and not a technology project. Understanding best practices around content organization and user experience is critical to making sure your visitors find what they are looking for. If you can technically create your own website, do so, but invest in a marketing person to critique the site layout, content organization, on-page optimization, your call to action and landing pages.

Myth : Great marketing works instantly

Reality: Although marketing creates visibility and some tactics can produce instant results, marketing is about sustained contact with your target audience to ensure they know who you are when they are ready to buy. Marketing is an investment and like all good investments, it takes time to achieve the greatest gains.

Myth: What you think is important

Reality: This might sound harsh, but the fact is, it’s the opinion of your customers that really matters. If you think you treat them well, is that what really counts? Do your customers think you treat them well? You’ve got a new website and it looks great, or does it? Your customers might not agree. You may only listen, read or watch a particular station, but what about your audience? Try to see things from the other side. Get someone outside your business who can be objective.

Myth: A mobile website isn’t necessary for small businesses

Reality: If your website doesn’t support a mobile visitor, you will lose many opportunities to be seen by your ideal

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