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17 Costly Marketing Mistakes
The sooner you, and all of your employees, realize that your only business is capturing and keeping the right customer, the sooner you'll build a profitable, satisfying business.
to capture information about your customers. The sooner
you, and all of your employees, realize that your only business
is capturing and keeping the right customer, the sooner you'll
build a profitable, satisfying business. If you're starting a
business, don't start until you have installed a system to build
a customer database. If you're already in business and you don't
have a customer database, start now!
to profile your customers. If you're satisfied with every
and any customer, and you think all customers bring value to your
business, you're dead wrong. If you're happy just to hear the
phone ring because of your advertisements or marketing programs
you could be attracting the wrong customers. Customers are not
created equal. A wrong customer can never be right! However,
if you don't know the profile of a right customer for your
business, you're building a business that's going to provide fewer
profits and more misery than you ever anticipated. Profile
your customers . . . study them . . . find out which customers
are the most profitable and satisfying for your business . . .
and go get more of them!
the importance of customer contact. Everyone in business
appears to be market driven; that is, they want to capture a larger
share of the marketplace. Why don't you be different? Why don't
you focus on capturing more customer share? Once you capture
the right customer, don't let go of that customer. Get as much
value from that customer as you possibly can. You can't do that
without contacting the customer!
calculating the cost of capturing a customer. When you
realize that customers are your business you then want to put
a price on a customer. You might be surprised to know how much
it costs you to capture a customer. However, once you discover
the cost, and track it, you'll never again squander an opportunity
to keep a customer.
Not calculating the lifetime value of a customer. You
must know how much a customer is worth to you . . . not only for
one transaction, but for a lifetime of transactions.
to the wrong market.If you don't know who your customers
are, and you don't understand the difference between a right
and a wrong customer for your business, how can you
possibly advertise to the right market?
price over value. Businesses that advertise low price
get customers who pay low price. Is that what you want for your
business? As soon as your competitor advertises a lower price,
what do you think your customers will do? Once you understand
how much it costs you to capture a customer, you understand that
you cannot afford to lose customers. But any business that advertises
price over value is setting itself up to lose its customers as
soon as another business offers a lower price. If you want customers
who are willing to pay for value, then advertise value!
percentage off over dollars off. When you advertise price
(not necessarily low price), it's a mistake to advertise a percentage
discount because customers and prospects frequently don't know
the original price. Consequently, it's too difficult for them
to figure out if they're getting a good deal. Always advertise
in dollars. Instead of "15% off our regular price,"
state the offer as follows: $109 . . . You Save $49 Off Our Regular
pointing out your unique benefits. Have you created a
unique selling proposition to describe your business? If not,
then how are you different than your competitors? Maybe you know
how you're different, but how would your customers and prospects
know the difference? You've got to tell them, and the best way
to do so is by developing a unique selling proposition and then
using it with all of your marketing and advertising programs.
the same method of advertising over and over. To build
a business you must rely on advertising, public relations, networking,
and sales. To get specific, you might need to use direct mail,
publicity, door hangers, yellow pages, newspapers, radio, television,
and seminars. Each opportunity works. However, these opportunities
are most effective when they are all part of your marketing mix.
Don't rely on just one method of advertising.
features instead of benefits. Why do you buy products
and services? You buy certain products and services because you
need them, of course. But why do you buy Product A over
Product B? And why do you patronize Business X over Business Y?
You know why. Because you're emotionally involved in the outcome
of your decision. You buy the benefits of Product A and
the benefits of Business X. You may not even care that
Product B is cheaper than Product A. You buy Product A because
someone has convinced you that Product A will give you the emotional
satisfaction that you desire from the product. The message?
Promote benefits over features.
until it's too late to market your business. Why is it
that the first thing a business owner will cut is the marketing
budget? Who ever instituted that habit among business owners?
A sign company uses this slogan: "Business with no sign is
a sign of no business." Take away your sign (your advertising,
promotion, networking and selling) and you take away your business.
Marketing isn't something you do when you can afford it. Marketing
is something you do daily to ensure the ongoing success of your
your customers understand what you sell. Doesn't matter
what business you're in; plumbing, heating, carpet cleaning, remodeling,
accounting, or selling furniture! Unless your prospect or customer
is in your line of work, how could they know what you do and what
you sell? If they do know it, chances are they're not going to
contact you anyway! They contact you because they need your services
and products. However, there's no better customer than an educated
customer! Teach your customers about what you do and they'll become
more loyal to your business.
your customers know your product line. Just because they
come into your store every day, doesn't mean your customers know
everything you sell. Just because they call you for one service,
doesn't mean they know all the services you offer. Educate your
customers about your product line!
to ask for referrals. Who better to promote your business
than a satisfied customer? Who's a prospect going to believe first
-- you? Or a satisfied customer? It's so much less expensive to
rely on your customers to build your business . . . and yet, most
businesses fail to ask their customers for referrals. Shouldn't
you be able to get dozens of customer referrals weekly or monthly?
what you think is best for the customer. Until you ask
your customers what they want and need, and what they will buy,
and then listen to them, you don't really know what's best
for your customers. Make it a point to poll or survey your customers
by phone, mail, or in person. Organize a series of Customer Focus
Groups. Find out what your customers really want from your business
. . . then give it to them.
that your employees know what you know about customers.
Have you ever sat down with your employees and explained to them
the profile of your ideal customer? Have you explained the lifetime
value of a customer to your employees? Do your employees understand
that you're in the business of capturing and keeping customers?
If you want your employees to help you build a more successful
business, you've got to educate them.
Free Report is not intended as business advice. Consult with appropriate
advisors prior to franchising a business. For information about
further assistance from Dr. Hayes, call 972-985-8044.
John Hayes is a prolific writer, popular speaker, seminar leader and consultant to businesses in the United States and internationally. He is an advisor to small business owners, independent distributors, franchisees and franchisors. email@example.com
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