Let’s Debunk the Most Common Marketing Advice
Written by: Sahil Dhaliwal
Whether you’re an experienced marketer or a newbie, falling victim to marketing myths happens to everyone. The field is constantly transforming and good advice is constantly becoming outdated.
So if you’ve found yourself adhering to some of this widely-accepted advice and you’re still having a hard time increasing your business’s success, read on! We may be able to help.
Let’s nitpick some of these marketing myths and see just where they went wrong:
1. “Good Marketing is All About Captivating Creative and Clever Copy”
Strong creative and copy are very important. They attract your target audience, convert consumers into customers, and more – but your marketing strategy shouldn’t end there. Without solid research and strategy, you could be missing out on a lot of potential gains.
Think of it like this: great creative and copywriting are the ‘icing on the cake’ but quality research and strategy are the main ingredients. No one will buy an ugly cake, so its icing must be presentable and eye-catching, but there’s no cake without its foundational elements. In-depth research informs you about your target audience, what they really want to buy, what the market (and your competition) is like, etc. while great strategy lets you effectively connect with your audience at the optimal time and place in order to make a sale.
Simply put, the competition in a select market is likely very high, but the companies that effectively prioritize analysis and strategy into their marketing tend to sell out at the bake sale.
2. “Don’t Waste Money on the Smaller Marketing Materials — Create Your Dream Website”
First things first: If you’re strategizing how to effectively target your audience, you’re investing in your business’s future. If you’re building fancy websites with no effective consumer outreach — then you’re wasting money.
Millions of websites exist on the internet, let alone within your own market, so it’s likely yours will be overlooked. You must optimize your site and efficiently market your business by getting the word out.
Not sure where to start? Ask your current customers to put in a good word for you (you can even offer a referral discount or other incentive)! If you don’t have many customers, start by creating print ads, email blasts and funnels, social media ads, or other campaigns.
Another option is to work with an experienced marketing team out there to optimize your website’s messaging via SEO (search engine optimization) and strategically attract your target audience. Marketing teams come in many sizes and are often flexible enough to work within your budget. So, consider it an investment in your business’s future success — not a waste of money.
3. “Generating Heavy Traffic to Your Site is a Good Marker of Success.”
So you’ve got a lot of people visiting your site and looking at your products. But how many of them are actually following through with a purchase?
If there’s a large discrepancy between the number of users visiting your site and the number of users purchasing your products, you may have a problem. Traffic isn’t as important as conversions.
Now, you don’t need to worry too much because you’ve already started off on the right foot! The heavy traffic means that your initial marketing efforts are clearly generating interest, but not enough to achieve your intended goal. Well, a little investigation could go a long way. Dig deep into why your leads are backing down, when they’re doing it throughout your marketing process, and how you can effectively alter the issue at its root.
Consider the following:
– Have you identified the right target audience?
– Are you focusing on “what your consumers want to buy” as opposed to “what you’re selling”?
– In which areas of your marketing funnel can you strengthen your pull?
– Is your messaging appropriately succinct? (Not too brief and not too wordy?)
4. “Blogging Is Dead.”
No, Blogging in 2021 is not dead. In fact, it’s an excellent way to draw traffic to your site and earn the trust of your incoming audience! Over 4 billion people throughout the world use the internet, so there’s never been a better opportunity to include blogging in your marketing strategy. A good blog IS good advertising and marketing.
Tip: you can even repurpose your blog content for your social media! It’s a win-win!
Creating fulfilling content informs trust with your consumer that you have experience in your field and, well, that you know what you’re talking about. A good blog also spreads the word about your site throughout the internet, increasing the chances to attract more visitors.
Don’t let anyone convince you that a blog is unnecessary, because the truth is that it’s pretty significant when it comes to brand awareness, cultivating consumer trust and even driving long-term results… (Psst! consistent blogging is key.)
Tip: The types of blog posts you create matter! For example, “How To” blogs are really practical and useful, and consequently are more likely to improve engagement & consumer trust. (Kind of like the blog you’re reading right now… how meta.)
5. “Your Word Count needs to be around 2,000 in order to get on Page 1.”
This may have been the result that a statistical analysis study yielded years ago, but with the rapidly transforming landscape of marketing and SEO, this isn’t really true today.
When it comes down to it, the two main factors that dictate the optimal length for your marketing are the following: Meeting your users’ search intent and creating the best content (with relevant links)!
1. Meet your audience’s search intent by answering their questions right away. Skip the long intros and fluffed up content and get right to the messaging. When in doubt, answer the question first. Then, structure your content efficiently: start by answering the question, conveying the main message, then providing examples, followed by data and analysis.
2. It’s not the larger word count that makes you rank higher on search engines, it’s the number of backlinks. Longer articles and web pages just tend to have more backlinks. “What’s a backlink?” Well, it’s this. Whether you’re backlinking to your own website’s product page/blog or someone else’s – building links helps in ranking your site. Also, creating quality content will increase the likelihood of other websites referencing it and linking to it, furthering your rankability. So prioritize quality over quantity.
There are plenty more marketing myths out there that need debunking, but we figured this is a good start. If some of these caught you off-guard, no need to worry! Some of our best discoveries come from mistakes and we need to harness that power. Approach your learning from a growth mindset rather than a fixed one. No one starts out as an expert.
Best of luck!
Also published on Medium.