If you ask ten people the definition of marketing, you are sure to get ten different responses. Most people don’t quite understand it or assume that it is only “creating a logo” or “selling your service or a product.” However, marketing encompasses a myriad of topics, ranging from strategy to establishing mission and vision statements, to client experience and service, to branding, to sales. Below are some common myths I frequently encounter when discussing marketing:
- Myth: People assume that if they have “enough” clients – they don’t need marketing.
Truth: A large part of marketing is uncovering needs, interests and the burdens of your current clients in order to get more work or purchases from them. Being too comfortable with your current clients and not actively engaging them and growing them is dangerous to your business growth. What other needs do they have that you are not currently meeting? How can you add more value to your current audience, customers and clients? There is always more…great marketing will always uncover other needs of the client.
- Myth: All my business comes from referrals, I don’t need marketing.
Truth: Yes, most business does come from referrals. Referrals are critical to growing and sustaining any business, which is why client service is very important as part of your marketing and growth plan. Do you have a plan on how to convert a happy customer into a referral? We can’t assume that just because a client/customer likes your work does not mean they are telling others about your work or business. Are you keeping track of your referrals during “down times” so that they will keep referring your business. Don’t ignore your referral network. They are valuable for your continued growth. A great marketing plan will include your referrals.
- Myth: Social Media doesn’t affect my marketing.
Truth: Social media has the power to create or break a brand, depending on well or poorly your social media plan is executed. Admittedly, social media may not always be the determining factor in landing your next customer or client, but it can validate or invalidate you or your company with a potential client who is still deciding whether to hire you. Developing a good social media plan is critical for any brand, organization or business and does not require a large budget, just focused intention and planning.
- Myth: Marketing is simply advertising.
Truth: Advertising is only a slither of what a marketing professional does or may only be a small part of a marketing plan or budget. In fact, most marketing departments work with advertising professionals that are much more talented and focused on the dynamics of advertising. Marketing creates a strategy on what to do with advertising and how to convert advertising into business. Developing a good ad is only one piece of a much larger puzzle.
- Myth: I have a logo and a website. I’m done with marketing.
Truth: I cringe when I hear someone narrow down their marketing efforts to simply a logo and a website, when actually a logo and website is just the beginning. Marketing is about consistently creating and promoting great content and images to engage your target customer. It is creating a story with your logo and website. It is building a brand. This is done through a variety of channels. Is your website designed in a way to increase traffic and the customers you are seeking? Does your logo convey the top 3 words of the brand you wish to create?
- Myth: Marketing is sales.
Truth: Wrong!! I kinda chuckle when I hear sales people assume they are marketers because they know how to sell or when marketers assume they know sales. Different strengths are required for each. It is important for marketing to do its job effectively so that the sales team can come in and close the deal. If you are having a difficult time closing deals, it could be because of a lack of effective marketing.
These are just a few common marketing myths that I encounter regularly. Do you see or hear yourself in any of these myths or assumptions? If so, please contact me so that we can discuss your marketing and brand. I would love to help you “connect the dots.”