There is a reason for the proverb “you have to spend money to make money” – mainly its truthfulness. Business owners especially take it to heart when it comes to marketing strategies. The belief is that if you cover as broad audience as possible you will get the most potential customers or clients. However, a great deal of marketing spending is wasted. Partly it is because the technology behind it changes so rapidly that it soon becomes outdated and partly because businesses cannot decide what their target audience should be. With a narrower and carefully orchestrated marketing campaign businesses could both save much of the wasted money and form a stronger relationship with customers.
Track your spending
The most obvious and often forgotten step toward saving money is tracking how much you spend. In order to have a good grip on the return on your investment create a quarterly report about how much you have spent and how it has affected your business. It’s important to focus on how much actually money the advertising is bringing in and not just how much traction it creates. In the end, it’s about the revenue and not about shares or hashtags.
Understand the audience
Advertising money is mostly wasted on trying to attract the wrong crowd to your business. Before you decide on any strategy or create any content ask yourself who your customers are and why they should choose your brand instead of all the others. It is also common for the clients to change with the business, so review your work periodically. The advertising that used to work now doesn’t because your business has gained a reputation and now it is time to a different (more lucrative) market. The best way to do this is to have test groups from different portions of your clientele and eliminate the content that doesn’t do well.
It’s become clear that print ads, TV ads, and other forms of traditional marketing are no longer useful, but as it turns out the same goes most of online advertising as well. Most of the internet browsing has moved to phone and other mobile devices and every business should have an app. It isn’t enough to just move the content to the new platform before everyone else does – you need to carefully track how successful was the transition, with mobile analytics apps such as Leanplum. Mobile advertising provides the opportunity to personalize the content and make “the call to action” as accessible as you can.
Don’t focus on the community
In the early days of social networks, there was much talk about creating the community around the brand and spending a lot of money on community managers and social media experts. The research shows that young people have started to use social media in a different, less engaging way. The role of your Instragam page or a twitter account is once again to inform and not to pretend to be a friend to the customers. Save your money with this one and focus on getting the message out.
Event based campaigns – don’t bother
There is a belief that building suspense and creating a countdown campaign to a big event (big sale, new venue, etc.) is a must. This can be effective, but it’s no match to the ongoing and subtle marketing efforts. This may cost less, but it has a more lasting impact on the audience, especially on those who have their doubts about making a purchase or deciding on a service provider. With the internet providing everyone the opportunity to research the product endlessly –it is important to be proactive and stay on the minds of your audience.
The success of a marketing campaign doesn’t have to be related to the amount of money you spent on it. Focus your resources on finding the right target audience and keeping them engage. That saves money and creates a loyal customer base.