Not Knowing Who Your Audience Is and What They Think
Your audience is your public, your prospects, your clients and potential clients. For most businesses, that doesn’t include everyone in the general public. If you are a swimming pool cleaner, you will get the most from your advertising budget by promoting to pool owners. You can get an even better response if you know what concerns pool owners have about the cleanliness of their pools.
The best way to learn more about your prospects, who they are and what they think, is by survey. But if you can’t do a survey, you can learn more just by talking to current customers, looking back through past sales, evaluating trends, and studying what works for your competition. Promote directly to the concerns of prospects rather than just telling them what you offer.
Not Being Consistent
- Message — What is your message? Based on your plan and your knowledge of your prospect (from the work you did above), you should now know what your message is. Don’t mix it up, don’t confuse your prospects. Keep telling your message. Continue to survey and learn more about your audience and change your message only when you find out that your prospects think or want something different.
- Your Look or Identity — It doesn’t have to be award-winning design but it should be consistent. Establish your corporate image through consistent application of color and layout. Always use your company brand consistently. Do not use your logo as a headline or bury it in copy or dilute it in any way. Keep your identity a separate element that is easily distinguished and recognizable.
- Repetition — Keep promoting. If you send out a postcard in January and business doesn’t increase immediately, do not stop. The reason you see McDonald’s ads every day is because it takes that to keep business coming in. It’s better to mail an inexpensive postcard every month than to do a large, expensive, one-time ad. The ad is gone in a day and you are forgotten the next day. Instead send some information every month: new product announcements, successes or testimonials from current clients, etc.