Top Tips For Terrible Marketing (And How To Avoid Them)

Every business wants more customers. No Sh*t. Far too often, when businesses actually try to get more customers, they do the opposite. They completely miss the mark of what Marketing actually is, and end up leaving a bad taste in their customer's mouth.

Instead of earning their customer's attention, customers see more noise. Instead of adding value, customers feel cheapend. Instead of differentiating from their competition, businesses blend in. All of these are the EXACT OPPOSITES of the fundamental aims of their efforts, and I hope this list helps you avoid these tempting mistakes.

This is by no means the extensive list. I mean, every day businesses are thinking of new and innovative ways to repulse paying customers. But these are the top 3 mistakes to avoid (or implement if you really want to).

1) Spamming Your Fans: We often hurt the ones closest to us.

Customers who opt-in to emails are obviously interested in your business. They engaged with you because they liked you, but that doesn't mean they want to open their inbox to a dozen half-baked offers all trying to get them to fork over their cash. This will only hurt your reputation with them, and cause them to ignore you.

The purpose of reaching out isn't to bombard them with meaningless sales, it's to make customers emotionally involved with your business, and help them until they're ready to buy. When advertising to customers, put their wants and needs first and they'll eventually thank you for it. By buying from you instead of the dude sending a dozen desperate pleas a day.

2) Copying Competitors: Well if they're doing it, it must be working.

There are lots of reasons not to copy your competition.

Besides the fact that you're able to offer value to your customers in a way that the competition can't, imitating them cuts the market in half to where both you and your competitor aren't making as much as you should be. Even though you may want your competitors to lose, the best long-term strategy is to capitalize on what makes your business unique and better. Develop your own tribe of enthusiasts. Stand out from the sameness. Don't let it be apples to apples.

From a marketing standpoint, there are three reasons you don't want to copy competitors.

First, if you do whatever your competitors are doing, you might end up marketing on your competitors behalf. Second, doing the same thing as them turns what you're offering into a commodity. This will make your customers choose based on the lowest price, and in a price war, no one wins. And third, they may have a different marketing strategy than you, if they have a higher budget than you you'll just be wasting money. Marketing strategies change with scale.

3) Filler Content: Blah, Blah.

If you're putting in the effort to create something for your customer to see, you want it to actually do something. To mean something. Don't just do it because you think it's required. When other humans actually go to read that content, because they will, you don't want your feed or your blog to be the reason customers choose to ignore your business.

There's a lot of reasons to get in front of customers, but ultimately, you want to give them things they want to see. Instead of constantly asking for a sale, let them know what your business is up to. Show them the journey. Tell them a story. Give them something to laugh at. Seth Godin describes it at "courting your customers".

If you have any questions, or have any other terrible marketing tips, comment below!

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