Could you sum up your marketing efforts with the common phrase, Keeping Up With The Jones? Do you look at your competition and copy whatever they are doing?
Although it’s vitally important to understand what your competition is doing, mimicking their marketing efforts does nothing but hurt you.
Worrying about keeping up with your competitors actually puts your business farther behind because you’re executing tactics that worked for them months or even years ago. And besides, wouldn’t you rather be on the leading edge of your industry instead of being a company that follows everyone else?
On top of that, copying what another business is doing isn’t a guarantee that those same marketing tactics will work for you. And, you have NO idea whether those tactics even worked for that other company. For instance, it might appear that their Facebook page is successful because it has a ton of “likes”, but it might not be driving any new business. Be careful about determining whether something will work for your business based just on external indicators.
Is what your competition doing increasing their traffic and profits?
Don’t define your activities by what others are doing. That’s a following strategy. Chart your own course. Be the leader. If you are listening to customers and making sure you are satisfying them, then you are the right track.
Who are you trying to reach? In other words, who is your ideal customer? Avoid the temptation to say, “everyone is my ideal customer,” because they’re not. Get really specific and look at your best clients. What do they have in common? What are the characteristics that you look for when talking to prospects? Understanding your target market is critical to effective marketing.
One of the best ways to make this happen is looking at who actually makes or influences the buying decision. From there, you look at what their needs or problems, what they’re trying to achieve, how they can be successful, and their budgets.
Once you understand where your potential customer is spending time, you should also take the time to listen to your customers and target audience to better understand their needs and pain points. This will help you develop proper brand messaging that will strike a chord with your ideal buyer.
The bottom line (and the effect on your bottom line) is that you need to make your marketing decisions based on what makes sense for your brand, product or service .
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