6 min read
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Smart brand positioning generates profits for companies from Apple to Zappos, but for companies that are just growing, high-level marketing can be seen as a luxury. The Small Business Association in America suggests that companies spend 7 to 8 percent of profits on business promotion, however the average small business spends only 1 percent.
This is a shame, considering that marketing generates more income than expenses. A Nielsen study revealed an average return of $ 1.09 for every dollar invested in promoting a business, but remember, that's just an average. With a little planning, marketing can bring you pretty good profits, even for the smallest startups.
Getting entrepreneurs to invest in marketing starts with taking down misconceptions. Here are the three most common.
Lie No. 1: I really don't need marketing
It is easy for many small business owners to minimize the need for brand promotion. There is an intuitive logic to this lie that makes it alluring. Growing organizations often cultivate local followers, connect with their customer base in very specific ways, and rely on word of mouth to spread their reputation. And if they have been successful in this way, then it is easy to convince yourself that they do not need marketing efforts to generate income and that it is better to invest in the business to continue generating value.
Can you continue to grow with these types of shortcuts? Occasionally, but not for long. Companies that do not invest in marketing seldom achieve the success they might have had had they invested in promotional channels.
Many entrepreneurs whose startups failed regret not having invested in advertising or brand management and strategic initiatives.
The truth : The numbers don't lie: everyone needs some marketing. The key is to make efforts that fit the needs of your brand and your budget. And getting value out of your money is much easier in this digital age. Buidlfire, an app for small-scale entrepreneurs, suggests starting with these options to generate maximum impact:
-s on Facebook
-Google My Business and AdWords
-Promote free advice and encourage a referral program
Lie No. 2: There is no way of knowing if marketing makes a difference
You hire an agency. You have big plans and even bigger hopes, but what exactly happens to that money? Answering this question is difficult for many growing companies. Sure they suddenly have a customer who mentions seeing an ad on social media or subscribing to their newsletter, but beyond that, who knows?
Part of the reason for this fog that surrounds the performance of marketing campaigns is very simple: many small businesses don't keep score. A recent survey found that nearly 45 percent of its respondents said they did not measure the return on investment of their digital efforts. And those who do tend to miscalculate, spending money on low-performing platforms.
The truth : Success lies in making informed decisions. If a service costs you more than it benefits you, find an alternative. You would not continue using certain material that did not contribute to the positive results of your business. You would not tolerate an employee who did not contribute to the success of the company.
Marketing is the same as any other facet of your business. You can't improve performance if you don't know where it is. Review your return on investment to evaluate and refine your scope. With all the advancements in digital analytics, there is no excuse for not following your marketing metrics. Small business owners have found these automated tools to be particularly helpful in scaling their efforts:
Lie No. 3: I can't afford high-level marketing
Your small business may need marketing, and you may even notice the difference investing in promotion makes. But it would be impossible for you to embark on the kind of marketing campaigns a Fortune 500 company does. s who run smaller companies feel caught between two options they think they can afford.
Do it all themselves . This saves you money, but it takes a lot of time. And if you don't have experience, this may sacrifice some of the growth of your company.
Hire an advertiser or agency . Small businesses prefer to endorse other small businesses, so why not trust a local marketing agency? Depending on where you live you will have better or worse options.
The truth: It does n't all come down to managing all marketing internally or having to outsource everything. Businesses can get expert help with things they don't know how to do with a la carte models. Marketing is a service that you have to contract the whole package or not contract anything.
Shoe brand K-Swiss knows the ins and outs of social media marketing, but since they weren't sure how to expand their audience beyond tennis lovers, they hired Hawke Media. Both in terms of budget and experience, an agency that offered them all the services made no sense, they needed something tailored.
It's easy for startup leaders to lie to themselves about the need for high-quality marketing, the difference it makes, and what they can afford. But with a well-focused investment, any company can benefit from a good promotion. And that's the truth.