Crossing the finish line doesn’t mean you won the race. Learn how to strengthen your marketing efforts.
Know Your Ranking
How are your marketing efforts currently performing? If you aren’t already, you should be looking closely at a detailed report of your website analytics and sales reports on a monthly, if not weekly, basis.
Quantitative Measurements to Consider:
- How many of your marketing channels are bringing in leads and sales? i.e. Print ads, Google search, referrals, newsletters, TV commercials, coupons.
- How many leads come through your website? How many convert into sales?
- What is the average page rank of your website?
- How many search terms does your website appear on page one of search results for (if any)?
- What is your return on investment (ROI) for your traditional marketing tactics? for internet marketing tactics?
If you’re marketing results are weak, you might be focusing on the wrong tactics.
Choose Your Sport
Watch the Olympics and you’ll see athletes participating in sports that complement their natural abilities. Yes, they’ve also trained extremely hard, but most people will gravitate towards an activity because they have characteristics which make them excel at it. The same can be said with marketing.
Some business owners or marketing professionals prefer focusing their efforts toward the development of content like blogs, press releases, and infographs. Others who might be more sociable in nature, prefer spending time building relationships via in-person networking or social media like Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Instagram.
Understanding your marketing strengths is the fastest way to improve performance.
Assess Your Competition
Anyone that has ever been involved in a competitive sport understands the importance research plays in winning. Coaches are always pushing their athletes to watch hours of video of their competitors and themselves as a way to identify strengths, weaknesses, and most importantly: tactics used.
Tackle those tactics (if you aren’t doing them already) and do them better.
SEO Obstacles to Overcome
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a key part of any well-rounded marketing endeavor but there can be roadblocks in the way to the finish line. These are a few to consider.
- Finding a balance between content for people readers and content for search engine spiders.
- Using the wrong keywords. Keep in mind that your audience isn’t necessarily using the same lingo as those in your industry. Think about the keywords they would really use to find your product/service.
- Finding and fixing broken links. Broken links (or 404 pages) deter website viewers and look bad in the eye of a search bot. Find them and fix them to avoid long term damage.
- Google algorithm updates. Anyone heard of Penguin for example?
Never Stop Training
Just 10 minutes a day is all it takes.
When it comes to marketing, especially online marketing, consistent monitoring and improving is important in keeping your competitive edge. Even if you squeeze in just 10 minutes into your daily routine to check on your marketing performance, you will be able to spot issues before they turn into problems that could hurt your ROI.
For more long-term strength training, invest time and money in updating ALL of your marketing tactics on a consistent basis. Blog writing for example, is a great SEO tool when used correctly because the search engines see that you are updating your site with fresh content that is relevant to people’s present-day search queries. Search engines don’t want to promote or encourage websites that have outdated information or news stories that are no longer current.
Great athletes are always testing their strength and abilities. Marathon runners for example, regularly run 15-20 miles per day to stay in peak shape for the next big race. Business owners and marketing professionals need to push their limits regularly as well. This includes testing messaging with test groups, checking on the speed of the website, training sales teams how to better communicate marketing messages, and asking customers how their experience can be improved. Without training, it is impossible to realize a marketing campaign’s full potential.
Training is also important because the field of marketing is constantly evolving. New opportunities can pop-up overnight and if you’ve kept up your A-game you’ll have the chance to be one of the first critical adopters and influencers.
Go for the Gold
You never hear Olympic athletes say they are hoping to get a bronze or silver medal. They compete for one ultimate goal: to earn a gold medal. Of course not everyone succeeds, and I’m sure they are still incredibly proud to come in second or third place, but the drive to be #1 is what got them that far to begin with.
So aim for that top spot on Google search results, or seemingly impossible 5000% marketing ROI. You might be pleasantly surprised.