Common Marketing Mistakes that Should Be Avoided (at almost all costs)

By Herman Pool
In Marketing
August 28, 2012
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Kat / Vertical Axion

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Marketing. It’s one of the buzz words of today. There are so many ways to market your company that it can be a little overwhelming for the average business owner. The one thing that everyone who owns a company needs to know, however, is that the majority of marketing techniques are junk. Here are a couple of them that you should be aware of in hopes that you can avoid them.

Know Your Product, No Idea about Your Customer

Your product is amazing. You’ve tested it, spent thousands advertising for it, and you have memorized the entire booklet of information about it. You live, eat, and breathe your product – your world has become product-centric.

This is a huge, costly mistake. You need more than just a vague idea of who may use your product. If your target audience is “teenagers,” you’re not thinking deep enough. Not only do you need to know your audience, you need to know how they’re going to use your products practically in their lives. “But my product is revolutionary!” you say. “Everyone will buy it.” As wonderful as that would be, it’s not usually the case. Know your product – but know your audience even better.

Along with knowing your audience comes listening and understanding that audience’s desires. You need more than just numbers and so-called “market research”. You need to sit down, in a room, and listen to your target audience’s commentary. Have you already done that? Acquired a good number of opinions on your new product? Good. But are you really listening for the right things? Chances are you’ve pitched to the people you want to sell your product to – your FIRST customer – and haven’t thought much about who’s going to buy it from them – your SECOND customer. Your customer’s customer is the driving force for the success of your product. If they buy, your first customer will buy. Listen to them, too.

Formulating Good Value Propositions

A value proposition is basically a marketing message that not only sells your product to your customer, but their customer, too. They are tricky and can be difficult to formulate without years of marketing practice. However, let’s say you’ve got those years of practice and have come up with something that’s good. Many companies, small and big, tend to “group-write” the message after it’s been formulated. It’s rare that a group of individuals can write and construct a message that is appealing to a lone customer`. A crisp, specialized message can only be written by an individual who has experience and in-born talent.

Even if you don’t have an expert and can’t avoid this mistake completely, you can still give it a try. Keep your message under twenty-five words, don’t overuse commas, and make it so easy to understand that a third grader can read it to his or her mom while they sit in a waiting room. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at the outcome.

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