Running a business involves a lot of facets that can overwhelm many newcomers to the business industry. From production to customer service, logistics to product design- there are often too many things that business owners begin to neglect other important aspects. One of the often neglected aspects of business is marketing. Coupled with myths and misconceptions that are common, marketing often becomes the least of a company’s priorities.
Below, we dispel common myths and discuss why even the smallest of businesses need to put effort into their marketing.
Small Business Don’t Need to Invest in Marketing
For small to medium enterprises, much of the resources and efforts are poured onto day-to-day operations and other means to make production efficient. Not every company has an extensive resource pool to pull from, making financial decisions limited to what is perceived as “value-increasing”. However, it’s important to neglect marketing. Small businesses would benefit greatly from a good marketing drive as it will help drive more audience to your product. Not only that, marketing in itself doesn’t have to be a financially laborious effort. Through clever positioning and the right advertising approach, even small businesses can receive considerable returns from the simplest of marketing efforts.
Social Media is for Teenagers
While it may seem like social media websites like Tiktok, Instagram, and others are only for teenagers, this could not be farther from reality. Depending on which platform your business is utilizing, the age demographic can vary widely from 15-year olds to “boomers” in their late 50s or 60s. For marketers, understanding your audience and content is crucial to be able to choose the right platform. Some social media sites have a tendency to lean in certain directions, like Instagram being popular for fashion and fitness, while Facebook has a generally larger market range.
Understand that social media has now replaced many conventional social gathering activities, especially with the recent changes affecting the world. Due to this, the age range of those who use social media has varied ten-fold, similar to the number of people who are using it. Knowing where your audience is is critical, and immediately dismissing social media as a platform for kids and teenagers will severely limit your campaign.
Traditional Marketing is Dead
Many people believe that the future is wholly digital, and while that might not be false, when it comes to marketing, traditional is definitely not dead. Marketing tools such as brochures, flyers, and leaflets still have their uses, especially when localizing your marketing efforts to a specific neighborhood. Other traditional marketing concepts such as word-of-mouth advertising still largely play an important role, though sometimes they take on a different form.
For businesses who would benefit from a localized effort, where their services are limited to a certain area only, traditional marketing is still very much useful. Mom and pop restaurants, cleaning services for drains and plumbing, and even local salons would do well to still maintain a traditional marketing effort for their business.
Targeting the General Audience is the Best Approach
One of the most common misconceptions when it comes to marketing, in general, is that you need to target a wide audience to get the most results. While in some cases this is an effective strategy (especially for businesses that are not particularly niche), the most cost-effective way to advertise is through a target marketing campaign. Of course, performing such an effort requires knowing who your target consumers are, but when that is taken care of, it’s relatively easier to turn more leads into paying customers.
By adjusting your marketing strategies and efforts to appeal to those who are most likely to pay for your services, your initial marketing efforts will essentially pay for themselves. When done consistently enough, this niche effort can bleed into other target segments, and that’s when targeting the general audience works best, when there’s already interest (often generated by a core audience).
A Good Product Will Sell Itself
Here’s a harsh truth for many entrepreneurs: regardless of how unique, special, or life-changing your idea is, it will not sell itself unless you work for it. No matter how effective or efficient your products or services are, it’s pointless if your market isn’t aware of its existence. Simply putting it “out there” would do it a disservice as well.
Equally as important as marketing itself is the advertising of its key features that differentiates it from what’s already available on the market. This is where a good marketing campaign comes into play: it highlights your product or service’s strengths to better convince your target audience. It puts not just your product, but your company as a whole into the market consciousness, and when done well enough, will pay itself forward by establishing your business.