This week on the podcast I’m sharing the marketing mistakes that might be slowing down your strategies and making it difficult for customers and clients to find you.
Luckily I’m not going to tell you to ditch your marketing strategies or completely change direction. Whether you’re marketing your business on Instagram or Facebook, hosting a podcast or workshops, running ads or rocking YouTube – all of those, and lots of other strategies have been proven to work.
So if your marketing isn’t working there’s a good chance you’re making at least one of these mistakes. Take a listen to see what you can adjust to make your marketing more effective!
Resources + links
The Essentials – All your marketing essentials in one spot: http://xosarah.com/essentials
How to survey your audience: Episode #44 https://xosarah.com/2020/10/29/how-to-survey-your-audience-and-get-answers-you-can-actually-use/
2021 Goal Setting + Planning Workshop: xosarah.com/newyearworkshop
Marketing Mistake #1 ➜ Not being consistent
I have a feeling you might have guessed this one because it’s something I talk about all the time because no marketing will work without consistency.
In order to grow your audience and get them to respond to you and turn into paying customers and clients you need to be showing up, wherever that is, on a regular basis. Instagram, facebook, YouTube, podcast – if you’re not showing up a few times/week your audience is:
- Going to have a hard time remembering you in the sea of other people sharing similar things
- You aren’t going to be top of mind when they’re ready to pay for help.
- Your audience is going to miss a lot of what you share. Especially on Instagram and Facebook where the algorithm favors those that contribute consistently and help keep users on the app.
Not only does this give your audience more of an opportunity to learn about you + your products or services, but the more you show up the faster you’ll build the trust and connection needed for them to pay you. This takes time which means a few posts each month isn’t going to cut it.
The best way to become consistent at showing up on Instagram, at recording podcast episodes, or emailing your list is to make it a priority in your weekly task list. Fox example: on Mondays I create Instagram content. The only weeks I’m able to be consistent are the ones that I show up and check off that task. If I don’t my posts that week will be sporadic.
This means the things you need to be consistent at must have their own space in your calendar so that you get in the habit of showing up every week.
Remember – Your audience is not going to show up consistently until YOU are showing up consistently. So pick one piece of your marketing puzzle and figure out where it sits in your week and what habits need to go along with it to be consistent.
Marketing Mistake #2 ➜ Not understanding your ideal client/customer
You cannot market successfully if you don’t know who you’re speaking to. You really need to understand what their day-to-day life looks like, their motivations, the thoughts or feelings or experiences that hold them back so you can communicate how you help them.
This is one of the first things I do with students when they dive into The Essentials or my digital product program. We create a detailed document about their ideal client or customer that they can use to create emails, Instagram posts, website copy, sales pages.
Everything you teach, create, share goes back to that one document so it’s easier to create your marketing strategy. You’ll start to feel like you’re repeating yourself (because you are) but only means you’re sharing a consistent message.
When I transitioned into creating products and teaching marketing I had a much easier time marketing my own business because I was getting to know my clients and students a lot better. I was doing coaching calls, I was talking to them one on one, and that helped me understand what their problems look like from their perspective.
Not only does it make my marketing better but it helps me to show up consistently because I know exactly who I’m speaking to. I can picture a specific person who has been in my courses or in my coaching program and I can guess pretty accurately what they’re doing that is helping them or holding them back.
We talked in a previous episode about sending a survey to your audience which is an awesome way to get a bird’s eye view of what most of your audience is focused on so you can use the actual words your audience is saying. You can also ask these questions via direct message, email or on a coaching call.
Or you may already know all of this information you just haven’t taken the time to sit down and write it out. If you do need help with this, the very first module in The Essentials has a template that will walk you through exactly what you need to write down or learn about your audience to create marketing that will connect with them.
You can get access and dive right in at xosarah.com/essentials
Marketing Mistake #3 ➜ Not using video
If you are already on Instagram or Facebook this is the number one thing you need to commit to. Skipping video is holding your business back.
We can already see by Instagram adding the Reels button to the bottom of the app that they are prioritizing video content. Instagram wants people to spend more time on the app and you are helping them make that happen by using Reels, Stories and IGTV.
You don’t have to use all the features, but using any of them consistently will help your content show up for more of your audience.
Another trend we’re seeing is that consumers want to know who is behind the company they are buying from whether that’s a company of 500 employees or a company of just one. And video is the fastest way to create a connection with your audience, share your values and your mission, and give them an idea of your personality and your vibe.
Especially if someone is paying to work with you directly they’ll want to know what kind of human you are. Video can help make that decision to purchase happen much faster.
And reminder – you don’t have to create videos the way other people are doing it. Just because everyone is dancing and pointing on Reels doesn’t mean that’s the only thing you can do on that app. Be creative, test things out, save videos that catch your eye for inspiration.
Or if you don’t have any ideas, then scroll through the popular page and create something similar. When one person did the shoe throwing video, tons of other people recreated that video and they all became popular.
If you’re intimidated or feeling awkward just do the thing you already see working (giving credit to the original creator of course) and then once you get comfortable with the platform you’ll find new ways to use it.
Marketing Mistake #4 ➜ Not including yourself in your marketing
Sometimes it feels like nobody gives a shit about us, the person behind the business. We tend to tell ourselves our audience is just after the info. But if that was the case they wouldn’t be following you on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, etc and joining your email list.
They’re not following because they want the information, but because they want the information from YOU.
This is why there are so many business coaches, so many health coaches, so many travel bloggers, and mommy bloggers, and all of them can have a massive following and build a business. Because they aren’t just sharing the information they’re sharing the information in their own way.
So if you think you can get away with being an anonymous, behind the scenes CEO or just having your face on your about page, I’m here to tell you that if you’re growing a business online and especially if you are creating courses or services were someone will work directly with you, then YOU need to be a huge part of your marketing.
People don’t just want to know what to do, they want to know how YOU did it. The emotions you experienced, what you did when things got tough, how to make things easier. They want your opinion on the best practices. They want to know how you fit it in your day-to-day life. They don’t just want some Ikea instructions, they want you there to talk them through it.
And if you are hiding behind stock photos and graphics and memes you are holding your business back.
Three ways to start showing up and including yourself in your marketing:
1 – Start taking selfies: get used to taking photos of yourself and being the face of your business
2 – Hop on stories: it’s the least painful way I’ve found to start testing video and if it’s awkward it will be gone in 24 hours.
3 – Share pieces of your story: Write a bulleted list of where you started to where you are now (in relation to your niche) and then start sharing pieces of that story. The funny, the embarrassing, the wins, the fails, the lessons you’ve learned.
Still to this day I still have moments where I think – Will they really care about this? Will they be interested? But there’s no way to find out whether they care without posting and then looking at the numbers. So get uncomfortable and start stepping out in front of your business!
Marketing Mistake #5 ➜ Not giving things time to work
This is something I did myself for years and surprise surprise…it slowed the growth of my business. I can see the exact years where I switch my marketing strategies too often or added too many tactics and it kept those things from working.
And this is really challenging because we’re constantly told about the next best strategy and the new thing we should be doing, the new platform, the new app. We’re adding so many strategies that it leads to us spending less time on each thing and then getting so overwhelmed we don’t want to do any of it.
We might implement the strategy but then we don’t go back and check the data and improve the process. Instead we’re off to the next thing on our list. The problem with this is that a lot of strategies take iteration and need time to work.
One of my favorites list-builder and course-seller is the free webinar – but you can’t just create a webinar and write some emails and call it done.
You need to run that webinar live, you need to go back through your slides and make changes to make sure your audience understands what you’re teaching. You need to look at open and click rates on all of your emails and improve the ones that aren’t creating action. Once your webinar is converting, THEN can create a final product, set it up and (mostly) forget it.
Too many business and marketing coaches talk about strategies without the reminder to check the data to go back and edit, to try different things within that strategy. Don’t keep adding things to your marketing if the stuff you started with isn’t working.
Webinars, ads, challenges, freebies, going live – all of them can work. It just depends on your audience and your commitment to showing up and putting the habits in place that will make that strategy consistent.
So what makes a marketing plan work?
- Being consistent
- Understanding your audience
- Using video
- Including yourself in your marketing
- And giving your strategies time to work
If you want help to figure out a marketing plan for 2021 join me for my annual Goal Setting + Planning Workshop on Tuesday, December 15 at 10 AM Pacific. It’s $49 bucks or if you are an Essentials member it’s free. And yes, you’ll get access to the replay if you can’t make live.
You can read more about it at xosarah.com/newyearworkshop