Inbound marketing is too often approached with a ‘grab and run’ approach. This is where you try and hit up every person on your database and drag them into a marketing campaign that is poorly thought out, planned and executed.
The result is that you fail to connect with the niche number of customers you may actually have been trying to target and – at worst – alienate your broader customer or prospect base to the extent that they leave you behind.
These are the five biggest mistakes we see businesses make with inbound marketing campaigns and a short tip for how to turn each mistake around.
No set goals for the campaign
Your inbound campaign must be part of your overall marketing plan. It should have clear goals and the means to measure those goals. It is a waste of time, effort and money to create campaigns that are too broad.
Your campaign doesn’t always have to relate to selling a product. It can be to increase numbers to your database, launch a new arm of your business or be part of an overall branding strategy about establishing your reputation and expertise within a specific field.
Set up tracking and metrics to monitor who clicks through to your site and how they behave. This gives you valuable data you can use for future campaigns.
Tip: You don’t need to reinvent the wheel. Use SMART goals to help you identify the results you want and create specific benchmarks by which you can measure the success of the campaign.
What are you giving your customers in return for their click? It must be valuable. It must be useful to them – so you need to know your buyers extremely well. Can you match the offer to a particular need or time of year (e.g. tax return checklist, quick and easy web design tips for small businesses, annual property value overview)?
If you are driving people to your website you must ensure they will have a good experience when they get there. Don’t just send them to an existing page on your site that clearly has not had content refreshed in five years.
Tip: Take care when setting up your landing page. Take the time to optimise for SEO, include a clear CTA (call to action) and a form that is fast and easy to complete.
Too Much Information. Don’t blast your email database with so many messages that they switch off or unsubscribe. Start with a drip feed and build up to a greater sense of urgency as a campaign reaches its climax.
This is the same for social media and other channels. Mix up your messaging so that not every post is about the same campaign with the same link to the same content. It’s an overload. Seed it among other regular activities so the campaign ‘pops’ rather than ‘smothers’.
Tip: Each time you send an email or an update, try to introduce a new snippet of information to draw people in. Always keep it relevant and customer focused.
Too narrow an approach
This is the opposite problem and can be common in businesses that are more traditional or old-fashioned in their approach. They haven’t caught up with the plethora of platforms that can help promote a campaign.
If you have a blog, use that to generate interest about different aspects of the campaign. Come up with more than one angle and stagger the publication of your blog posts so the information is fresh and new each time. Remember to optimise blog posts with short and long-tail keywords for SEO.
Get the word out via social media and encourage others (staff, stakeholders, friends, followers) to do the same. Genuine enthusiasm and pithy messaging goes a long way on social media.
Tip: Paid advertising can be highly effective online. Choose one or two platforms such as AdWords or LinkedIn, set a budget and test how much extra traffic and clicks this generates.
The campaign is not designed for actual humans
“We are awesome, visit our website”. This level of generic messaging will not connect with actual people who are busy, stressed and seeking useful information.
Put yourself in the skin of your ideal prospect. What is making their life difficult? What are their pains and challenges? How does your campaign offer them genuine assistance? How much time do they have? Two minutes? Make a positive difference to their day.
Bear in mind your perfect prospect might not be ready to buy from you today. Have lead nurturing flow planning in place. If someone gifts you with their contact details don’t waste it! Make sure you have a strategy for staying connected with them and selling to them when they are ready to buy.
Tip: Part of the actual human guideline is NOT to buy lists. You will not get valuable prospects that way and it can be very costly. Take the time to nurture and build your own list of actual humans who want to engage with you.
We hope you’ve found these common mistakes and tips to combat them useful. If you have any questions at all about how to create the most effective inbound marketing campaigns, as part of a broader marketing strategy, please get in touch with Mogrify today.