#1: Expecting Overnight Success
One of the biggest mistakes small business owners are making is expecting a loyal fan base and high search engine results over night. Organic content strategies, takes hard work and persistence, like many self sustaining efforts.
"Depending on the amount of effort you put into your inbound marketing efforts, you should begin to see real business results within six to twelve months." - Social Media Today
The difference between Inbound Marketing and Traditional Marketing is that you aren't buying an audience with advertising dollars, your leading them to your business with your knowledge and content.
#2: Not Setting SMART Goals
Setting goals is the most important part of growing a business.
SMART goals are essential to the growth of your Inbound Marketing strategy and your small business. Remember it takes time to build organic and loyal customers, so start somewhere realistic. These goals are essential to the tweaking of your strategy and better understanding your audiences pain points.
"A dream is just a dream. A goal is a dream with a plan and a deadline."
#3: Establishing and Tracking Metrics
As common sense as this sounds, many business owners forget to track and measure their results on a consistent basis. The best way to do this, is by measuring your weekly, monthly, semi-annual, and yearly results. Why? They show you the growth your efforts are creating and the struggles you are potentially not seeing on a daily basis.
This is also true for setting unrealistic or unattainable goals.
"Instead of saying "I'll just write more blog posts a week," you should be saying this: "I'll write X number of blog posts a week to increase monthly visits by X amount."
The more specific and goal oriented your plan is, the easier it will be to measure its success.
#4: Not Developing a Content Strategy
This also ties in to setting goals. When you consult with an Inbound Marketing Agency, part of the strategy will be creating content for each part of the buyers journey and narrowing down your target persona.
An editorial calendar lets you stay on top of priorities, but it also allows your team to look at blogging and campaigns with a more critical eye. What works well and what doesn’t? Content planning helps you analyze hard numbers, detect problems and create solutions to the problems at hand.
#5: Not Utilizing Social Media
Social media is the best way to push your content. Platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn allow you to publish to specific groups which means your content has a higher chance of being viewed by someone who has an interest in it. But did you know there's another content opportunity on these social media platforms?
Social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, and now Instagram allow marketers and business owners to create ads withing their platform. Social media ads allow you to narrow your target group and give you a wide range of price options to start with. However, so many business owners aren't utilizing this tool properly or at all. Tsk-tsk.
Inbound marketing provides a solution that, over time and hard work, will keep your leads generating organically. Setting goals, creating a strategy, and using social media platforms for distribution are primary steps for your success. Having a plan and executing it is essential, but you can't make a plan until you learn what you need. Which is why we've created a fail-proof marketing plan to start you off in the right direction.