Growing a small business is not that easy. We start a business because we may be a good accountant, lawyer, website designer, business consultant, lawyer or other professional service providers, but that does not mean that we are experts at growing and marketing our own small business. As we are not business marketing experts, we tend to follow what others do. And most of the time, it does not work at all. Here are the most common mistakes that small business owners make when it comes to spending money and how they can turn those losses into gains.
Building a social media following
It may sound good, but building a following on sites such as Facebook can actually cause more harm than good for your small business, in that it can be a waste of time and therefore money. As the algorithm of Facebook is always changing, it has made it harder for marketers to reach their clients organically. Based on 500,000 likes per year, only around 2% of your followers actually, see your posts. The good news is that now you can buy Facebook ads so that you can boost the number of users who see your posts.
Solution: Try to get your client’s email addresses and send them weekly newsletters with updates about your services. Also, you can offer incentives to those who recommend your products or services to their friends or family.
Not Understanding What Your Customers Want
Marketing is all about knowing the needs and wants of your audience, but small businesses tend to lack this information. You will be wasting your time as well as money if you do not understand the demographics of your target market.
Solution: The first thing that you need to do is to identify who your customer is and determine what their needs are, where they reside and what they can afford to purchase. In defining who your primary customer is, you learn how to meet their needs and have a happy clientele.
Being Impatient and Giving up Too Soon
Marketing needs a lot of time as well as effort when growing a business. If you expect to get hundreds and thousands of followers in just one week, then this will seriously upset you. And as a result, small businesses give up, in spite of starting strong.
Solution: The solution to this is quite simple. First of all, do not raise your expectations too high. Give your small business a year or two to ramp up. Once you start getting followers, you can engage them with as much interesting content as possible.
Trying to do Too Much
Creating an account on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and a lot of other social networking sites is highly ineffective for a small business. As a small business owner, you have fewer employees. So don’t try to be online everywhere at the same time, all at once.
Solution: You can’t do it all – accept it. Choose one or two social media sites that your customers use the most and devote a few hours per week in promoting your products and services.
You Are Not Tracking Your Marketing Results
You may have Google Analytics set up, but do you really use it at all? Many small businesses aren’t aware how this tool works. They have a lot of questions and confusion regarding Google’s PPC and AdWords. As it is an effective marketing tool, business owners simply buy ad space without fully understanding how those ads work. This is one way that you could unwittingly be wasting a lot of money.
Solution: You can set up conversion tracking for your ad campaigns. This way you will get to know how effective your ads are at attracting your customers.
You Have Not Changed Your Marketing Strategy in Years
Times change, and so should your marketing strategy. If you have a marketing strategy that you have not changed in years and are still investing in it, this is simply a phenomenal waste of money.
Solution: It is suggested that you try new things every year. As marketing is always evolving, you need to evolve too.
Huge One-Time Ad Campaign
There are a number of cool marketing tactics that you can try. While some of them work great, others do not. This is especially true if you only have one shot to make them work. Diving into marketing campaigns that require a lot of money is a waste of money for small businesses.
Solution: You need to first test the ad campaign with a modest budget. If you see that this new tactic is not working even with a smaller budget, it is likely that it will not work with a large budget.
Are these the areas in which your business is wasting money? If so, then it’s time that you make some changes in your marketing plan and grow your business.