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There’s a common theme amongst loved brands; they all have great marketing. It doesn’t matter if it’s Apple, Nike, or Amazon, the story is the same. It isn’t a funny coincidence either. Great marketing makes loved brands. This is because marketing is an open channel of communication between a brand and its customers. It allows brands to build relationships and foster love. So, if marketing is so powerful, what are the most common marketing mistakes to avoid?

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1. Don’t ignore the importance of repeat business

Permanently seeking new customers at the expense of current one is a major mistake. In fact, our Brand Love report found that over half of marketers (58 percent) think that too many businesses are so focused on attracting new customers, that they neglect the ones they already have. It’s easy to see why this is such an expensive mistake too. Although repeat customers only make up an average 8% of a brand’s customer base, they equate to 40% of sales!

Existing customers are also easier to please. That’s because they already know the brand and have a (hopefully) positive opinion of it. What’s more, repeat customers are more likely to recommend your brand to others. This is a powerful sales lever. Especially as personal recommendations can generate up to 30 percent of sales. So, while looking for new fish in the sea, brands shouldn’t neglect those already in their pond.

2. Be consistent with messaging

There’s nothing more annoying than mixed messages. It leaves people confused and not knowing where they stand. More than a third (38 percent) surveyed for our Brand Love report suggested that inconsistent messaging is a common problem area for brands. But it doesn’t need to be like this.

Consistent messaging ensures that customers understand what a brand stands for and what to expect. This could be as simple as delivery times, for example, and ensuring they are clearly communicated in the same way at each point on a brand website. Being consistent makes it easy for a potential customer to make a positive buying decision. But consistency also means your style and tone of communication doesn’t vary wildly.

3. Ensure you understand your customers

Not understanding the target audience, their wants, needs, and bug bears, could be detrimental to a brand. Without truly understanding the target audience, it’s simply impossible to effectively market to them. To ensure marketing campaigns are perfectly aligned to the target audience, get to know them. Carry out market research, survey existing customers, talk to potential new customers. Once a brand knows what makes their audience tick, it becomes 10 times easier to successfully market to them.

4. Be authentic

Being fake isn’t attractive. In fact, trust was identified as the greatest hallmark of a great brand by our report. Being authentic means staying true to the brand’s purpose and using the brand’s values as the guiding principles informing all decisions. Of course, the brand’s purpose and values should also be an honest reflection of the brand.

For example, don’t add CSR values to your brand manifesto because it sounds good and then not follow through. This is the kind of thing that turns customers off and demonstrates that the brand is simply paying lip service to a cause. It isn’t a good look.

In Conclusion

If you think about a business gaining customers like a relationship, it becomes easier to understand what marketing mistakes should be avoided. No one wants to date someone who is constantly running after someone else. Equally, they don’t want to go out with someone who sends mixed messages, doesn’t understand them, and isn’t authentic.

If you treat customers like people, instead of numbers, and stay true to the brand’s guiding principles, it’ll be hard to go wrong.

If your current marketing strategy isn’t working for you and you would like advice on how to resolve it, get in touch.

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