So many people create lists of marketing trends in the new year, that I’d thought I’d try taking the angle of what not to do. Each of these have an implied suggestion for what to do as well – but allow me an article to a debbie downer and rain on your proverbial marketing parade.
1. Stop creating content that you’re not going to promote the hell out of
I strongly suggest cutting the amount of content you’re creating by half, and spending the other half on content promotion. If you’re not going to do big things around content promotion, than expect to see a somewhat lackluster return. Yes content is king – but if a king has no crown, no one cares. In this modern arena of pay-to-play social, yes I’m talking about promoted posts and occasionally other ways of paying to get the word out. If you can’t promote the hell out of every single piece of content you’re creating – maybe you’re making too much.
2. Stop having unskilled people create your content like it’s really going to drive traffic and conversion.
Yes, I get it. You have someone in the office who needs something to do while they wait for more work. But taking someone who is unskilled to create content isn’t likely going to drive crazy numbers on your blog, isn’t going to earn you links from around the web, and isn’t going to convince anyone to buy from your company. So why are you doing this again? To fill someone’s time? Utilize them to procure or create imagery, to help promote other posts or outreach instead.
3. Stop worrying about follower counts and get focused on engagement.
You could 100,000 followers on Twitter and get 3 retweets on every post and I’d say you failed even harder. Think of your job on social to create a small rabid following and expand from there.
4. Stop being romantic about where you’re getting the eyes on your content and message.
If you were killing it on Twitter 5 years ago, but now you know the attention is shifting to Instagram and Snapchat, I’d say don’t wait – bridge the gap to get people following you on the other two platforms – and figure out which one you’re getting the most views and likes on your stuff. Then go all in one one or two platforms with feverish intensity. Depending on your niche, attention and intention matter – you really just want to get as many people knowing about you and helping or entertaining them en masse.
5. Stop negating the power of attention and only giving a fuck about pure metrics.
Being a C-level executive with an accounting or management background doesn’t give you an excuse to not recognize the basic fact that when people in your core demographic are constantly exposed to your brand and your key value proposition – they are much more likely to buy from you.
When you tell your creative team – or your ad agency, that you only care about the bottom line… You better be talking about the bottom line of sales, and not the bottom line of pageviews or link clicks or whatever other vanity metric you’re obsessed with. And that leads to my next point…
6. Stop making ‘success’ in your marketing complicated – make it about gut and growth.
When I say don’t just give a fuck about pure metrics, I’m not saying don’t consider them. The biggest one being – customer acquisition. As a marketer, or as part of marketing team – that’s pretty key on the list of things that will get your promoted or fired.
Improve it – the company wins, you can hire more people – people make money. Fail to improve it, and you get fired, the company dies. Yeah these are the extreme ends of the spectrum, but the fact is people’s families depend on this.
Now yes – if customer retention is messed up, and ‘churn rate’ is knocking of customers or clients at an alarming rate that’s not technically your fault. But ‘not your fault’ doesn’t keep a company alive, so maybe help with product development and creating a better product or service at that time!
7. Stop neglecting remarketing
Remarketing is when you serve up ads to people that already visited your site. When it’s done on a product to product basis it’s a little creepy and a lot effective.
8. Stop Failing to segment your audiences for their interests in your different offerings.
When someone wants a specific service and you keep remarketing to them the general ad for your website – you’re only doing half the work. Creating segments in Google analytics and Facebook’s Ad platform allow you to target people who visited any page with ‘cakes’ in the url for instance, and serve up ads of mouth-watering cakes – instead of your main ‘Pattie’s bakery’ ad.
9. Stop creating content without targeting it to a keyword/topic that has real opportunity in search or social
I am alarming hypocritical on some of these – and none more than this. But that doesn’t stop this from being extremely true. If you can’t find the demand for a piece of content – either from a search on ‘Buzz Sumo’ indicating a ton of other content like it’s shareability on social, or by doing good old fashioned keyword research and determining theres a high amount of traffic and a relatively low amount of keyword difficulty – than you are creating a dud.
And you’re responsible for putting a dud out into the world. You wasted 4 hours – you wasted your companies, or your own time. You are not a content marketing hero – do not pass go, do not collect 200 visitors.
10. Stop being scared of influencer marketing, snapchat, instagram stories, [insert new marketing trend here] and just experiment with them for fun!
I read on a similar blog post to this that you’re not suppose to get into fledgling social media apps because you know, you might waste your time. Isn’t all of this a little bit of wasting our time if you look at it that way? Whatever happened to discovering new stuff? Whatever happened to being the first one in the door and doing a write up on what’s cool about it – and how to use it for business, if you’re a B2B company.
If you can’t spend 60 minutes fucking around with ‘Peach’, ‘Ello’ or whatever the next social media darling that goes belly up quick – then you’re probably not actually passionate about marketing in the first place. You get a bonus #11 – Stop working in marketing if you’re not passionate about it.
Myself, on the other hand – I think I can spare an hour while I watch Storage Wars to play with a new app and try to determine if it’s going to addict the masses. And you best believe, if I think there’s a serious chance that it will, try to take some of the clout I’ve been privelaged to receive on other social media platforms and try to connect with those people on the new app. Because I’m 70% certain Twitter will be dead or halfway to MySpace status in a couple years, and Instagram and Snapchat will die too if they don’t evolve. Don’t you fail to evolve either.