You are meeting with a client. You have finished delivering a data-supported pitch for your 2017 digital marketing initiative when the client turns to you, pauses, and declares none of this is needed because people don’t research their product online.
Or , you are in an internal meeting with your boss. You are mid-sentence pitching her on the need for a new hire in your department when she stops you, smiles, and says you have a tool for that. You don’t need a human.
Whether you work in-house or at an agency, these are soul-crushing times. You know in your gut that something is correct, but you have been smacked in the face with a digital marketing myth. We’ve been there. And we share your pain.
To help, today we outline five digital marketing myths and how to get around them. Let’s start with an oldie but goodie.
“Our Product Is So Good, We Don’t NEED Marketing!”
We also should not forget variations of this myth, including:
Our content is so good, we don’t need promotion.
Our social media game is so strong, we don’t need sponsored posts.
Our value proposition is so unique, we don’t need links.
Don’t get us wrong. We believe having a great product or service is the foundation of any marketing. It’s why we pour so much blood, sweat and tears into improving Megalytic. However, once the product or service is ready for an audience, it’s up to you to find it. It doesn’t matter if you write the best song if you only play it for five people.
If your executive team doesn’t believe in the power of marketing, show them what competitors are doing. Where are they being placed? What are they investing in? Nothing lights a fire under someone like seeing someone else’s success. Help them understand how Google Analytics can provide insight into the demographics, interests, and behavior of their customers to better get in front of them. Show them where traffic is coming from, what marketing is working, and where they can improve to increase sales and make more money.
“Our Customers Aren’t Online!”
Bless your heart.
Consumer buying habits have changed. Customers are using search to discover, research, evaluate, and do their homework before they ever interact with a member of your team. Here’s proof:
- 81% of B2C shoppers conduct online research before making a purchase . 60% begin by using a search engine to find the product they want, and 67% say online reviews impact purchasing decisions .
- 89% of B2B customers use the Internet during the research process , performing an average of 12 searches before they visit a specific brand’s website.
If your brand isn’t findable during that all-important, self-guided research phase, you won’t get the sale. To reach them, you need to understand your audience and position yourself as being able to solve their problem or to meet their needs.
The best way to debunk this myth? Show your executive team the number of visitors accessing your website every day, week, and month. Show them what your web visitors are looking at, what they are doing, and where they converted or abandoned the process. Present their search habits and create buyer personas around your targets. B2B customers are online and they are searching for what you offer. Optimizing the right channels to pave the way to your brand is how you’ll grab them… or not.
“We Need to Invest In [Latest Buzzword]!”
You don’t have to be in digital marketing long to notice digital marketing trends come around as frequently as the next bus. If you miss one, another will be around in 10 minutes. Hopping on to what is shiny and new is exciting and it’s easy… but it’s not often effective.
If you want to build a revenue-generating business, stop blindly following the trends. While there can be benefits to riding the latest and greatest, more often it will distract you from your task at hand. It will ensure no one thing is ever vetted fully, that you’re not learning from what you’ve done, and that you chase the popular instead of the tried-and-true. Great brands become great by evaluating what they are doing, and advancing. You can’t do that if you never do one thing long enough.
Let’s be honest, who can even remember what bandwagon we are supposed to be hopping on now anyway? Virtual reality? Mobile-first? Who knows.
“We Need MORE Traffic!”
Everyone wants more traffic to their website; however, traffic alone is a poor metric. You don’t want numbers, you want traffic that will increase revenue – you want qualified traffic. Visitors who will convert or engage with your brand (especially if you are paying for that traffic via online advertising).
You could buy millions of eyes with a pricey Super Bowl ad, but if you don’t make a single sale, was it worth it?
Help others understand that driving traffic and generating revenue are two different concepts by identifying the audience segments most likely to convert. Isolate your “best customers” from the rest of your traffic to show the difference in engagement and conversion. You don’t want to pay for all the eyes, you want to attract the ones most likely to do business with you.
“Reporting Is [Insert Single Person]’s Job!”
Joe writes content.
Lauren does design.
Todd does search engine optimization.
Kelly handles the reporting that puts it all together.
Whether you work in-house or agency-side, it’s easy for tasks to get silo’d. For people to become “experts” at what they do and to lose sight of the bigger picture. This is a mistake. The best way to empower others to be better at their job, to be more aware of the business’ bottom line, and to see the fruits of their labor, is to bring them into the reporting process. Not everyone will need to play with the raw data, but everyone should have a basic understanding of web analytics to make them more skilled at their job.
Debunk this myth internally by acting as an analytics evangelist for your agency . Sit with your team, or with your client, and help them see the effects of their work. Show your content strategist how visitors are responding to his messaging. Help your designer see whether her ads are converting users, and which designs get the best results. By tying analytics to performance, you’ll get your whole team invested in the reporting process and start breaking down those walls.
To create successful digital marketing campaigns, everyone must be on the same page and working in sync. Sometimes that means debunking lingering digital marketing myths to make it happen. Thankfully, by tapping into the power of Google Analytics and using data to make your case, you can help others see the truth behind what they may have heard or read elsewhere.