3 Marketing Mistakes To Stop Making

by | Sep 29, 2019 | Business Building Musts, Marketing Strategies

This week I’ve been having a chat to a client about a marketing proposal that they were sent.

Basically, it was for this amount of money in sponsorship we will give you this as a return on that investment.

And I have to say, it wasn’t necessary a good investment for my client. There were several flaws in the proposals.

It got me to thinking about the mistakes I see with marketing over and over again – so I thought this week I might share 3 of those marketing mistakes I see over and over again in the hope that if you stop doing them, they’ll make your marketing simpler – because, you know, that’s my goal for you!


  1. It’s not about the numbers

It’s just not about the numbers – well some of the social numbers I mean!

I know, I know, you’ve heard it all before, possible quite a few times but I just don’t think some are getting it.

The proposal I talked about a few minutes ago – the one my client was approached with had something similar to “we have 10,000 followers on social and will market to them about you …” you get the picture.

But a quick and I mean really quick look at their social platforms and it was very obvious that less than 1% of the followers were actually engaged with them.

Some posts had 3 likes, maybe a few hearts and the odd posts 1 or 2 comments.

They were hung up on the number – they had a big audience, but that big audience was super unengaged with them.

It wasn’t a selling point to my client at all.

In fact, my client has an audience about half the size and massively engaged.

So, my point is – the numbers of likes or followers don’t matter. You can have 300 and be in a much more engaged with your followers than someone with 2,000.

How engaged is your audience on social? That’s the question we all need to be asking.

If you’re not sure – head back to Episode 3 and have a listen to the discovery of the week – an engagement calculator for Instagram.

There’s possibly 3 reasons why an audience is unengaged with a page that they’ve taken the time to like

  1. they rarely post and therefore you simply aren’t seeing their posts in your feed – solution – be CONSISTENT – that’s the GOLD word when it comes to social media and really any marketing – consistency is key
  2. what they post is all about them, what they do, how they do it and how long they’ve been doing for – you posts need to following both the 80/20 rule (80% about the audience, 20% about you) and the Rule of the 3 E’s – always be educating your audience, entertaining your audience or engaging them with value, and

the third reason why an audience might be unengaged with a page they like,

  1. they’re the wrong audience for that page. They simply aren’t the people you are wanting to attract. No matter how good you are, how awesome value giving your content is, it’s just not for them and that’s ok. Because NOT everyone is your ideal client.
  2. Don’t do something once – repeat and repurpose, repurpose, repurpose

I recently had a messenger from a client asking if the 63 Canva built Social Media Tips she had done would be enough content for the next couple of months.

Now, I must say, I couldn’t type back fast enough to tell her that’s probably enough for the year at least!

I say it so often, consistency is key, absolutely, and original and curated content is definitely a key strategy too – but what we need to remember is that, organically, around only 5-8% (if you’re lucky and have an engaged audience) is seeing your content is their feed.

Therefore, you just can’t post something once and believe it will have an impact and even if it does, it’s always good practice to repurpose your BEST posts a few times too!

I often tell my audiences that if you post on say a Monday at 3pm and a Thursday at 9 am then the chances of you hitting the exact some audience is rare – in fact really rare. And if a person happens to see the same post twice and it’s talking to them, then they’ll possibly appreciate the reminder!

Now just to clarify, repurposing the content perhaps shouldn’t be EXACTLY the same – perhaps it’s got a different photo and same caption or vice versa – but the message can be the exact same – by the message I’m talking what you want to reader to think, do, act after reading it.

The same goes for emails and other forms of marketing.

The proposal I spoke about earlier said “we’ll email our database and tell them about blah blah blah” – what it should have said was we have a 5-email marketing funnel to tell our database about … blah blah blah.

Sending one email – especially if you’re launching something or hosting an event is fools gold if you think that’s all it will take to get traction and have dollars coming through the doors.

Marketing doesn’t require you to reinvent the wheel over and over and over again – but it does require you to look outside the box and get really specific with what the goals are and how you are going to achieve them – not throw mud and see what sticks kind of marketing!

  1. Don’t be general with your content – be as succinct and personalised as you can be.

I’m talking about lots of things here but with it all, I’m talking about making your audience feel like they are apart of something bigger than themselves.

It’s what we will want – we all want to belong to something. Belonging is the key ingredient is any following.

So, get to know your audience super super well so you can get as personalised in your content as possible.

Via email – using their name is the very least in personalisation so think about how you get more personal.

For instance, maybe asking direct questions that will encourage an answer and then you can start a conversation – same goes for calls to action in social posts – encourage a DM or message – again so you can have a one to one conversation.

If you’re looking at doing some collaborations with other businesses, write a specific proposal to them (or at a proposal that when they read it, they THINK it’s just for them) because you’ve done your research, you know what would be a win/win for you both.

Don’t send me a general, sent to everyone but I think you’re too stupid to ever work that out, proposal.

Some of the best personalised marketing I’ve seen comes in the form of video.

One retailer I worked with took up the suggestion of being more personalised and started sending quick videos to customers telling them their product that’s been on order has arrived.

Or sent videos out with little tips and tricks on how to get the best out of the product they just purchased.

They were so cool and so engaging and create massive fans of the business.

Another service-based business, who had a membership, sent individual welcome videos when new people came on board. Yes, it took time, but it created such a feeling of love and connection for the new member, that any thoughts of “did I do the right thing joining up to this …” disappeared in a heartbeat – they knew they’d found their tribe.

Personalisation will take time. No bones about it – but what it can do for your business, how it can build your community – your tribe will astonish you. Not to mention how it can help build your business’ profitability – because let’s not by coy here – we are all in business to make money!

So perhaps this week, set a timer for say 5 minutes and completely brain dump all the ways you think you can get more personalised in your business. All the ways you could be ensuring your customers or clients feel like they belong to your tribe and to something bigger than themselves.

Take a photo of your brain dump, post it on your Instagram Story or on your social and tag me @smallbusinessmadesimple so I can share the love with you!

If you’d like to hear this rather than read it – go to wherever you listen to podcasts and search Small Business Made Simple Podcast Episode 8 – or click here to webpage http://smallbusinessmadesimple.libsyn.com/ or here for iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/au/podcast/small-business-made-simple-podcast/id1448007188

How do you go about writing your headlines or captions at the moment? Is it something you labour over or is it a super quick exercise for you?

Headlines (or captions on Instagram) are so very important. Did you know that a reader will read the first 3 and last 3 words of your headline and gauge from them whether they want to click or read on? I guess if it’s shorter than 3 words, they read the first and last and not the middle is the point I’m making – our brains are funny things aren’t they – but it’s true, we don’t really read everything.

So today we are looking at how to write engaging headlines which leads to a click and the reader reading our whole post or article or caption.

Back in the 80’s, David Ogilvy famously wrote, “On the average, five times as many people read the headlines as read the body copy.”

Clearly that was before social media and the internet because today I think, and it’s just my opinion, that saying between 500 and 5000 people would read the headline and not the copy – think about it – how many things have your scroll past just today and haven’t bothered to click or read the rest of the body copy?

Headlines are powerful – when I say headlines, it does include captions also. Because on Instagram we talk in captions.

Instagram is a perfect example of needing to have a great caption or headline. You get less than 2 lines to grab your readers attention, to get them to click and read more.

So how much time and energy do you put into your headlines or captions? Whether you’re writing a blog, a social post, an article, a subject line in an email, powerful headlines are crucial to your success and the success of the piece you’ve written.

Your headline simply allows the reader to make the “to read or not to read” decision.

Marie Forleo famously said on her podcast one day that she writes up to 50 headlines for every piece of content she puts out there – she believes that the gold starts to come around the 30 mark! I remember thinking, oh my gosh, I don’t have that much time to write up to 50 headlines! And I’m guessing I’m not alone there!

As a content marketer, you win the battle for engagement by making your headlines irresistible. So, let’s have a look at some tactics bound to help you improve your headline writing chops!

  1. Ask

Posing a question, one of the oldest tricks in the book, remains one of the best ways to engage a reader.

  1. Talk about benefits not features.

Features tend to bore readers. Always go the benefits – how will your product or service benefit the reader? (This is where knowing your audience and who you want to attract comes into play, yet again!).

  1. Use specific data or numbers in your headline

Integrating specific numbers and data into your headline is an effective way to make your headlines more enticing to readers. Several research studies have shown that headlines with numbers tend to generate 73% more social shares and engagement.

Numbers not only stand out in a headline, but our brain is more respective to them. Just a pro-tip – when using numbers, make them unusual – so they really stand out. So, instance, 1917 stands out more than 1900 – it’s just how we see it. Unusual numbers are easier to capture readers attention. Sometimes, odd numbers make it more believable too. If my subject line was “how to increase your Instagram following by 2000 people in 7 days, it’s less believable than 1678 in 7 days.

  1. Use Rationales

Use rationales to engage with readers – rationales such as tips, reasons, lessons, tricks, ideas, ways, principles, facts, secrets, strategies etc etc.

Here’s some example::

5 Tips to Write Blog Introductions Like a Pro

15 Lessons I Learned the Hard Way as a marketer

3 Secrets to Make Your List Love your More

If you want people to read your content, do you have a good reason that they should?

  1. Follow the rule of the 4 U’s of writing attention-driven headlines:

The four U’s are:

  • Make the headline unique

o          Unique means one of a kind – different to others. Not sure if your headline is unique – google it! Type it into the search bar but make sure you use “ “ – quotation marks or talking marks as I was taught in school!

  • Be ultra-specific

o          E.g./ According to The New York Times, lack of focus, vision and planning is one of the reasons why 33% of small businesses fail.

  • It should convey a sense of urgency

o          Think FOMO – fear of missing out. Only 2 left, ends in 3 hours, or 5 Steps I took to do x, but you can do it in 4.

  • Your headline has to be useful

o          This encompasses all 3 above. If your headline and content isn’t useful, no matter how much urgency you employ, it’ll fail. In fact, there is no way to write a specific and unique piece of content, without it being useful at the same time.

o          Make it practical, helpful, valuable, informative, worthwhile, beneficial, advantageous and so on. The bottom line is to help the readers experience hope, knowing that their problem can still be solved.

  1. KISS – keep it simple super star!

Finally, in the words of Albert Einstein – If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough!

Write for your audience – don’t make the reader feel undervalued or dump because the words you’ve used are beyond them.

Don’t use: 12 Meticulous Savings Tips For The Financial Amateur

Instead use: 12 Effective Saving Tips For Those Who Want Extra Cash

Never ever use: Top 10 Omnipresent Places to Find Ravishing Blog Post Theses

Feel free to use: Top 10 Places to Find Useful Blog Post Ideas

You get the idea!

at the end of the day, it’s not enough that they click your headline. They need to read the information you’ve provided them in the body of your content, as well.

Getting the headline right is just the first stage!

Hopefully these tips will lead you to better headlines and thus better engagement and heavenly click through rates!

If you have any comments or questions, let’s get social on social and continue this conversation in my Facebook Group – Like Minded Business Owners. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Stay on your game peeps and keep going for your dreams because the world needs that special gift that only you have. Thanks so much for lending me your ears.

…….. and remember small business peeps, as my opening song says, there’s no point in dreaming small! XO Jenn

If you love podcasts – then think about subscribing to mine – Small Business Made Simple Podcast. That way you can listen in rather than read! This was Episode 23 of the Podcast – so to revisit what you’ve just read – head there! There’s the links – For Apple Podcasts click here http://bit.ly/podcastjenn for webpage click herehttp://bit.ly/podje


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Brilliant – it’s on its way – thanks!


Brilliant – it’s on its way – thanks!


Brilliant – it’s on its way – thanks!


Brilliant – it’s on its way – thanks!

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