If you've ever found that your marketing just doesn't get off the ground. Or it’s a bit stop-start, or you’ve tried things and they just don’t work, then keep reading!
I'm going to show you why that happens and what you can do to stop it.
Failure To Get Your Marketing Off The Launchpad
If you’re struggling to get going with your marketing you could be facing ‘overwhelm’ This is a well-known effect and has been identified in numerous research papers as one of the principal reasons why business people do not achieve their objectives.
You’ll probably know the feeling if you ever started researching something on Google and read through the first page of results – it’s usually enough to send any sane person into a flat spin). Then if you read Google’s second page you'll most likely find that some of it contradicts the first page resulting in what’s known as a “complete mind-bender of an experience”.
The problem is not that we’re short of information if anything there’s too much. The problem is sifting through it and making judgements on what is or isn’t right for you.
And once you've accumulated all of this information, there's another nasty little thing that can get you and that's perfectionism.
When you invest in your marketing you put money into the process. Naturally, you don’t want to waste the cash so it's easy to spend all your time trying to perfect something before you launch it. The problem with that is it’s easy to never move past the research and development phase because you can’t be certain you’ve got the ‘perfect’ solution. This ends in what I call Perfectionism Paralysis.
The way to overcome this is to use a technique called Minimal Viable Process. Simply, this means, taking the objective that you're trying to achieve and doing the minimum you can to achieve it.
Let’s say you want to do some Facebook Ads marketing. Using Minimum Viable Process you only need one account, one ad, one defined audience of people to see the ad and your credit card!
You don't need to worry about lots of complexity, in fact, strip as much of that out as you can because if it's complex for you, it's going to be complex for your customer. And the more complicated things are for your customer, the less likely they are to buy.
The second reason why you might have a tough time with your marketing is that it becomes stop-start or inconsistent. The reason for this is typically that when you have lots of client work to do you don't have time to do lots of sales and marketing, which causes a dip in the sales funnel but when there's less client work, you're able to return to marketing, filling the funnel back up. Then the cycle repeats causing income to fluctuate in response to how much marketing you’re doing.
However, there’s an easy way to get around this, simply dedicate a certain amount of time each week to sales and marketing and ringfence that time - make sure it's absolutely defended and that you are unavailable to everybody during that time. The effect of this is to keep your marketing consistent and that removes the income peaks and troughs that you get from the stop-start effect. This will keep your income higher and more consistent.
Getting Over The First-Time Marketing Fail!
You’re about to do some marketing! You're excited about it! You put lots of effort in, cross your fingers, put the money down, run it, and then it just dies on you.
That is sooooo disheartening.
In fact, a few days ago I was having a conversation with a company about this very thing. They said, “Facebook ads don't really work for us, unfortunately”, and replied, “Oh really? That's very interesting, why is that then?”.
“Well, we did it once and it just didn't work out.”
And in that sentence really is the explanation as to why they're going to struggle with marketing because they just tried it once, it didn't work, and now they’ve convinced themselves that it will never work.
But let’s apply ‘accurate thinking’ to this. If Facebook advertising didn't work, Facebook, wouldn’t exist because its entire business model, is based on revenue derived from its advertising. If advertisers didn’t get customers from their adverts, Facebook would collapse. The same applies to Google since their business model is also based on providing advertising. Even the multi-million-dollar direct mail industry exists because direct mail works. If these things didn't work, we wouldn't hear about them.
It's not the tools that are the problem it's just the fact that trying it once rarely leads to ‘out-of-the-park’ results! In fact, if it works the first time it’s what I call a “flippin’ miracle”. Even, professional marketers like myself don't expect things to work perfectly the first time - they almost never do.
But the key to this is to keep going, to keep testing, to keep trying. It might be that you hit gold after the 10th, 20th or 30th attempt, but carrying on means that you've got a much better chance of being successful than if you don't do it at all. So, don't worry if your marketing fails; keep ploughing on, keep testing.