5 Common Marketing Blind Spots & How to Fix Them
So, what is a marketing blindspot? It's a wide term I use to identify those areas that a business might be missing out on or under-optimising for that they could often either save or earn money through. They're a common oversight, which arguably happens even within the largest most successful companies. However, honing down on these blind spots and putting plans in place to capitalise on them can really turn around fortunes.
From the many (perhaps too many!) years experience I've had in reviewing marketing management for a variety of companies, there are some blind spots which tend to come up more often than others. Take a look at our top 5 below and see if any ring true for your business, plus the steps you can take to resolve them and keep cash more efficient in your business.
1. "We've always done...."
It's the number one most common blind spot and one we see time and time again. If your company is spending time or money on a marketing activity simply because it's always been done that way (and there are limited ways to track its' effectiveness or it is underperforming), it's time for a re-think. Sometimes these activities take place routinely and almost subconsciously and it's only when questioned (often by an external consultant such as myself!) you may ask why such an activity continues without question. Not to say that the regular marketing activity you conduct, such as display ads on partner websites or sponsoring an annual conference, can't be a successful strategy for your business. However the inherent problem tends to come from lack of tracking / trackability or a lack of awareness that historic activities should be identified and critiqued with the same brush as all other marketing activities.
2. Offline activities
Similarly, all offline activities need to be reviewed as part of your marketing strategy and brought into the same loop. For example, does your team attend a calendar of events and exhibitions throughout the year, and the results of the spend get lost rather than being captured into your wider business processes? How entrenched are your sales people with tools that your marketing team will share for information, such as the CRM system? This is often a huge grey area, for B2B organisations in particular, making it difficult to quantify leads and create visibility of ROI, which would help to inform strategic and budgetary decisions. This can often lead to over or under-investment in such areas and poor marketing spend.
3. Spray and pray
With development over the last decade into improved marketing tracking technologies, there is now little reason why the dated 'spray and pray' approach is an acceptable strategy. Aiming your marketing budget and message thinly at the entire audience, or indeed not even identifying and targeting a particular audience at all, is unlikely to be the best use of the critical marketing budget. Digital marketing in particular allows for precise and specific targeting to reach your identified audience at the time and place of your choosing, with the tailored message based on specifics you identify. Combining this with effective planning and testing will help to convert your customers at the lowest possible spend.
4. Silent silos
Sometimes it's only when you undertake an audit of activity and spend throughout a business that 'silent silos' can be identified. Have any individuals within the company developed their own seperate relationship, communications or activity with a partner or customer for example, which are not captured within the wider marketing strategy? Are these likely to be beneficial to the wider business when information is shared, whether it be positive or negative in outcome? Too often a loop of communication is not closed, for example to inform marketing of the final outcome of a lead generated when passed to the sales team to follow up. Successful marketing strategies require the whole company to work together in a joined-up fashion, and silos directly work against this.
5. Targeting & understanding
Finally, marketing is a very different tool to what it was 10-20 years ago. The marketing discipline has evolved from what used to be seen as a fluffy nice-to-have to a fully-fledged seat on the board. The changes and the speed that the industry has evolved however has meant that marketing teams now need to be multidisciplinary, with skills ranging from creative to technical and analytical on a regular basis. Our experience shows that such a mix of skills are unlikely to be found within one individual. For those with small teams or with little external support this can mean that some areas of marketing can be under-utilised through poorer planning, creativity or technical setup, for example. This can effect up to 75% of businesses through poor performance, especially across newer areas in digital marketing such as social media advertising.
Your business will benefit from our marketing audit and strategic recommendations
An effective way to review your marketing blind spots and put plans in place to address them is a thorough audit via an external body, who should review your activity (online and offline) with a fresh and impartial viewpoint.
One of our most popular services is our marketing audit and strategic recommendations package, which can save you thousands of pounds through uncovered opportunities.
Contact us today to find out how we can help you.