For my first blog, I thought I’d ask the question I’ve heard most often during my 25+ year marketing career … Why isn’t my marketing working? Is that a question you’ve asked recently?

Yes? OK the scenario is not enough traffic to your website, the phone isn’t ringing and no one is buying … now I’ll use that great phrase on the front of the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy … DON’T PANIC!

There could be some easy solutions by checking through some common things you may have overlooked that you can do to help put your marketing back on track, leading to increased website traffic, get that phone ringing and customers buying again.

This does require taking a little time out and doing some thinking about you and your business … and most importantly what you ‘know’! Here’s my questions to you:

Do you know your ‘why’?

This might seem a bit of a strange question to start with, but many people go into business and don’t really understand all the reasons why – what their motivation is, what gets them up in the morning … this underpins you and your business. If you don’t know your ‘why’ and what makes you tick, no one else will. When you know and understand your values and your ‘why’, your genuineness will will glow like a warm fire and customers will understand you, your business and want to buy from you.

Do you know your audience?

I always ask new and existing clients ‘who are your customers?’ Sometimes I’m told ‘I don’t know’ or they say ‘everyone’ … but that’s not right is it? Understanding who your clients are is a basic aspect of successful marketing for your business. By looking at your customer profiles in some detail and at least have some sort of pen portrait to understand their lifestyles, what they enjoy, their media consumption (TV, print or online, etc), brands they aspire to and so on. This will help formulate the marketing message and product positioning much more clearly by showing how the product or service helps them in their daily lives.

Do you know your USP (unique selling proposition)?

So what’s unique? There are loads of other people offering the same service as you. Simple … the unique thing is YOU, whether unique on price, experience, service, speed … and so on. So what’s your USP?

What makes your product or service Better (different) from the others and how do you communicate this? Be specific about the benefits … what the product or service advantages are and how it will make the customer’s life easier. What makes you different and what value are you offering them to buy from you?

Do you know your story?

Your marketing should ‘tell a story’ … after all stories trigger emotion and emotion triggers action. Think about books you’ve read or movies you’ve seen when you were growing up – you probably still remember them, right? So think about what you do and put together your ‘brand’ story with messages that grab the attention which will help increase your customers, encourage loyalty, so you and your brand can grow. Don’t dismiss the importance of this … consider what makes your customers feel good about their purchase from you?

Do you know your customer journey?

You need to look at your business from the point of view of a customer … would you be happy with everything in that respect? How often do you ‘speak’ to your customers? What do you say to them (message) and how do you say it (tone)? How well do you follow up queries and information requests? Can a customer find how to contact you easily? If you’re thinking ‘how can I remember all this every time I communicate with a customer’, you don’t have to as, depending on the size and nature of your business, there are many technological solutions to help you improve the experience your customer has with you.

Do you know your marketing objectives?

Have you set your marketing objectives? Where are you and your business heading? If you don’t know now, how will you know when you get there? Are you are doing the right marketing? Is helping you and moving your business forward? Do you have a marketing plan (quarterly and annual) and do you check against it regularly? There are simple ways to help you plan for marketing success without taking up all your time.

Do you know it’s not all about ‘me’!

Let’s be honest … we know you can talk about you and your business, it’s exciting and it’s yours! But shouldn’t you find out about what the customer needs as they will help you achieve that success we all want? Find out their goals, add some value by talking about the benefits to them. This has a link back to the ‘customer journey’.

OK I hope this has given you a little ‘food for thought’ … naturally we at APS can help you thought some or all of the above. Give us a call on 07773 366393 or drop us a line Click here to get in touch.