Author: François Reynier
François Reynier is the founder and creative director of Acacia, a specialist branding consultancy working with innovative independent businesses and well-known brands. Throughout a 25 year career, François has notably worked with Deutsche Bank in the UK, Mercedes-Benz in Germany and Smart Cars in Switzerland. Acacia has enabled numerous independent businesses to stand out from competitors and scale up faster. Read this blog from François to learn how to avoid common mistakes and boost your growth.
Avoid these common marketing mistakes and rise above the competition
We often think success is about doing more. But how about doing less of what doesn’t work?
Let’s look at the 3 most common mistakes most businesses make without even realising, and how to fix them.
Stop believing in silver bullets
In an online world where everyone fights for attention, many businesses struggle to connect with their audience. This can become so suffocating that it’s often tempting to look for a quick fix. The latest social media platform or lead generation software everyone is talking about makes alluring promises of easily connecting us with more clients than we dream of. And who wouldn’t be tempted by getting hundreds of leads while you sleep? So many businesses invest in these attractive solutions. Yet, after investing time and resources for months, we realise that we have tons of likes and data, but no sales. Sounds familiar?
You can have a thousand likes, but no sales. Sounds familiar?
Why can’t all these online tools, with their powerful reach, transform followers into buyers? After all, aren’t we living in a world where technology is the ultimate solution to everything? The simple answer is that the software is only the tool, not the solution. When communicating with any audience, technology is only valuable if you have something interesting to say. What matters is how well your message resonates with your target audience. Not the software or social media platform you use to deliver it.
Stop saying the same thing as everyone else
It’s only natural to talk about your expertise when promoting your business and it feels like the right thing to do. However, online this will get you nowhere. Your expertise shouldn’t be your main and only value proposition. It’s not enough to stand out. Of course, expertise is important. But simply pitching our expertise won’t be enough to get ahead of competitors. Firstly, expertise isn’t unique. It is something all well-established businesses can offer. And our screens are full of experts talking about their expertise all the time.
Talking about your expertise is no longer enough to attract clients.
Secondly, global online outsourcing means that finding expertise is easier and cheaper than ever. What was once regarded as high-end specialist expertise can now quickly be accessed and bought online, from accounting to medical tests and video production. So, by making expertise the main selling point of your business, you will gradually turn your business into a commodity. This is the worst that could happen, as you’ll inevitably end up competing against the lower end of the market. Only talking about how well you do what you do won’t effectively differentiate you from the competition. Focus on talking about what makes your business truly different: your unique culture and values, what the whole experience of working with you feels like. This will give you an inspiring value proposition that isn’t the same as everyone else.
Stop adding to the noise
Isn’t it ironic that we live in a world where access to a huge online audience is easy but being visible to clients is harder than ever? We all complain that constant noise makes it hard to stand out when posting online content. But is our content truly valuable or simply adding to the noise?
All too often, most businesses’ content fails to connect with their audience. Unless your message is truly captivating, your audience will just ignore it. Yet so many businesses don’t pay enough attention to the quality of their content before posting it online. This is because they often think that since anything posted online will be seen by a huge audience, it will somehow pay off. The belief is that because technology gives us such a powerful microphone to engage with online audiences, simply using it will get us results. But by doing this we’re just manufacturing expensive noise. If your message is irrelevant, your audience will instantly discard it as noise. That’s the harsh truth.
Pause for a moment and think of your all-time favourite song. Try to remember some lyrics. Now answer this: what microphone did they use to record it? You don’t know, and why should you care? The reality is that it’s the beauty of the song that makes you like it, not the microphone used to record it. It’s the same when communicating with your online audience. The quality of the message is what truly matters. To avoid blending into the white noise, focus on creating content that is truly captivating to your audience before putting it in front of them.
Unless your message truly captivates your audience, you’re just manufacturing noise.
Stop doing what 99% of businesses do
The majority of businesses do these 3 mistakes without even realising. Being seduced by silver bullets, only talking about your expertise, and posting irrelevant content are expensive mistakes. Fixing them isn’t expensive and doing it will get you miles ahead of the competition.
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