Marketing campaigns are so essential to brand growth that it’s shocking to see how many errors companies make.
Such a bleak title, believe me, I know. I really tried to change it, but nothing else seemed to fit. Be rest assured, however, that this article doesn’t herald doom.
To start, have you ever made a decision that catalyzed a series of downhill events till you had to scrap whatever it was that you had planned? - I have.
Once, not quite long ago, I had a plan to spend a long-awaited day with a couple of friends, sightseeing and just having fun. However, I disregarded the weather signs and decided to go out dressed for summer in October. (Yeah, I agree with whatever you just thought there.)
Before noon, I already had something like this image flashing in my brain:
Anyways, I had to cut my day short because I definitely wasn’t dressed to be productive or helpful in any way to others.
This might sound pretty mundane and minuscule on the scale of events, but that’s precisely what happens, even in marketing. The littlest things can have the most impact.
The launch of a campaign is quite an exciting moment. Having to make sure all the pieces are in place, ensuring all vendors are up to the task, and that the product is ready for public scrutiny. Riveting stuff, eh?
As such, it can be devastating when a tiny error derails a marketing campaign that has been in the works for weeks, even months.
So, what are those errors to look out for when planning your marketing campaigns?
Disconnection Between Brand and Service Niche
This comes across as a ridiculous error, right?
Now take, for example, Taco Bell’s Make a Run For The Border tagline in their 1988 marketing campaign. On its own, it does not correlate with the brand.
The company thus had to combine it with components of their food and brand, which then made it make sense. If not, the video was a little crazy. A horse, a train, two men, a saloon!
Everyone would have been left wondering just what service, in particular, they had to offer. Now, imagine if this were a new establishment?
The problem with a disconnection between brand name and category is that many people might remember your name but have no idea how your product or service could be helpful to them. This would mean a failed campaign as it did not increase rewarding brand awareness. Your clients are not Sherlock. They won’t find deducing what your product offers as a great use of their time.
All About Vanity Measures
So what? Are your followers your clients, prospects, or otherwise? - Let’s do a little Q&A: How many followers do you have?, How many likes did your company page get as of yesterday?, Did you immediately know all the answers to these questions or have them as a priority?
Then lend your focus to this: It is not necessary. Now, don’t get me wrong, knowing these measures is excellent...for discussions with colleagues or friends, not necessarily for closing a deal. They are cool stuff to know because who isn’t thrilled by these numbers?
The key is not to place emphasis on them or prioritize them as a goal. These measures are what marketers call “Vanity Metrics.” They have no real impact on your business growth or bottom line. If you can’t manage cause and effect in these measures, why concentrate on them? - God forbid you spend marketing resources on such a flimsy goal.
Disregarding A/B Tests
In everything we do, there is always a choice. Why then would you decide not to give your marketing campaign choices?
The A/B test involves you undertaking two strategies for a campaign. If Test A does not perform as well as B, you should continue with B and change test A or put it on the back burner.
Choosing not to conduct this test gives your campaign at least a 50% chance of failing. Why take that risk?
Choose the Right Audience
Have you ever tried to pitch a product or service to prospective clients and, somewhere in the middle of your presentation, you find out you were speaking to the worst possible crowd?
It’s like trying to sell eggs to a poultry farm...an absolute waste of time. And this is a mistake that several brands make. Thus, understanding your target audience and communicating well with them goes a long way to making your campaign successful.
Using The Wrong Trend
Jumping on what’s trending and using it in your campaign has backfired on many companies in the past.
Remember Pepsi and Kendal Jenner in 2017? That fiasco was a PR nightmare.
And they are not the only ones!
An American rapper slammed Heineken for their “Sometimes, Light is Better” campaign.
Kenneth Cole for that horrible tweet during the uprising in Cairo.
Facebook had Zuckerberg smiling over the destruction caused by the flood in Puerto Rico and a host of others. These were big companies who should have known better, but this faux pas did happen. These examples show that marketing teams make specific errors every once in a while that could almost wreck the company as a whole, not just the campaign.
To avoid this, have a sounding board before even going to your supervisor or the board. You are trying to garner the public’s interest, so why not conduct a test to see how they would receive it before going big?
The Final Note
In conclusion, launching a marketing campaign is at the same time scary and exciting. When done right, the impact ripples across all sectors of the company. Looking out for these tiny but fatal errors can save you a lot of headaches and your company.
How about you take just a little time now and evaluate your actions. As they say, a stitch in time saves nine.
Get stitching, people!