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10 Strategic Marketing Mistakes
By Debra Murphy, Masterful Marketing

Solid marketing efforts take a combination of planning, creativity, and patience.

Although some of these will seem like common sense, I still run across companies that commit these sins. Solid marketing efforts take a combination of planning, creativity, and patience. Keep these in mind when you are assessing your marketing efforts.

1. Not Developing a Marketing Foundation

Many folks want to jump right into marketing programs, not establishing a solid foundation before they do. The result - ineffective programs that waste the marketing budget.

2. Deploying a Marketing Strategy that is Not Focused

A company must pick a marketing strategy and then stay focused. Constant change to compete with the latest fad does not breed success. Figure out who you are and stick with it.

3. Not Clearly Defining Your Target Market

Trying to be everything to everybody means you are nothing to anybody. Choosing a target market enables you to develop marketing messages that hit home with your audience by addressing their specific concerns.

4. Delivering an Inconsistent Marketing Message

If each marketing program delivers your message differently, your prospects get confused and your results are poor. The continuity and consistency of message and brand across all programs will increase your chances of breaking through the marketing clutter to really reach your prospects.

5. Believing a Second Rate Web Site Works

This is one of my biggest issues. So many web sites are just plain horrible. Many companies forget that perception is reality on the web and people are not going to do business with a company that does not have a decent Web site - period.

6. Sticking With An Ineffective Marketing Strategy

Don't get caught up in the idea that 'things will get better' if you're not seeing results with your current marketing strategy. If you do the same things, you can expect the same results.

7. Changing Your Marketing Strategy That Works

On the other hand, if you have a winning marketing strategy that consistently gives results, then why change it? Experiment with small changes that can improve your marketing and keep it fresh and effective.

8. Stopping a Program Too Soon

Easily the most costly mistake is changing your marketing messages or brand midstream. Just about the time you are sick of your marketing, your prospects are just beginning to recognize who you are. Give your marketing time to work. Remember, you are constantly battling to get your prospects attention.

9. Focusing Too Much On You Or Your Company

As a prospect, I probably don't care who you are or how great your company is. I want to know how your product or service is going to benefit ME. Focus on your customer. All the details about you and your company are background information, not the focus of your marketing efforts.

10. Cutting Marketing when the Economy is Bad

Marketing helps your sales people stay productive. Generating leads, creating awareness, building credibility, telling your prospects that you are alive and well. Cutting marketing is the biggest mistake companies

Debra Murphy is founder of Masterful Marketing, a marketing coaching firm that empowers small business owners and independent professionals to take control of their marketing to get better results. She helps you change how you think about your business and put activities into motion that attract your ideal client. She started Masterful Marketing to ensure small business owners had access to the knowledge available to larger companies so they could live their dreams and build a business around their passions. Although her knowledge of marketing covers all the traditional channels, she specializes in online and social media marketing to make sense of it all to those who want to use it to effectively market their businesses.

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