Those who’ve been keeping an eye on marketing trends over the past few years have probably seen significant shifts that’ll shape how businesses market their products and services. Some say that email marketing is on the decline (naysayers) while SEO, PPC, and content marketing get more and more headway every year.

With so many predictions and an uncertain business climate, it’s easy to feel jittery about marketing. And when you’re unsure, it’s easier to make mistakes. If you want to avoid being in the annals of marketing fails of the year, here are 4 outbound marketing mistakes to look out for and avoid at all costs.

Mistake #1: ‘Let’s target everybody…’

Here’s an interesting paradox (or is it irony? we’re not sure): by targeting everybody you end up targeting no one at all. 

Many marketers think that casting a wide net with a fine mesh solves their targeting problems. No. For one, targeting everybody will waste your time and resources no matter how vast. Even the most renowned brands in the world know they can’t talk to everyone at once. If you’re on a tight marketing budget, you’re out of luck. 

Targeting everyone also makes your brand vague and confusing. Who are you for? What do you stand for? 

Boosting sales and reaching conversion goals demand a good understanding of your target audience. You need to identify, hone in, and hit your mark. Know who your target audience is and what their needs are. That way, you can focus your marketing mojos on people who matter. 

Mistake #2: ‘…and show them the same thing!’ 

Different audience segments need different message strategies. Just because one message does it for one group doesn’t mean it’ll do the same for the other. 

What about the brand’s consistency? 

You can still be consistent in your brand voice even as you try different messaging strategies (that’s what tonal variations are for!). Just remember to stay true to your brand’s core values and essence and you’ll be fine.

Mistake #3: Personalisation that doesn’t feel personal

Hi Charlie! Or Hello, James! Or is it Nick? Beth? Lola?

We’ve all seen this trend of addressing customers by their first name to make things more personal. But do you really feel like your Tesco’s friend every time it calls you by your first name? Probably not.

Autofill doesn’t turn a generic email into a special, customised mail for a specific person. Instead of wasting time playing the name game with autofill, use tools and strategies to create personalised experiences that make people interested and rewarded for their interest. Some strategies include making compelling offers, creating content based on what they like to see, and giving recommendations based on their purchase history.

Mistake #4: Testimonials with no proof

Say something nice about the product or service and plaster some made-up name on it — easy right? But that’s not how things work.

Yes, people trust other people’s claims posted on reviews and testimonial pages — even those they’ve never met, but sometimes it comes across as inauthentic especially when there’s no proof to back it up.

Positive comments about you, your business, product or service only work when there’s evidence to prove glowing claims. One way to get around this is by using case studies. Case studies are excellent marketing tools that can help you showcase your capabilities to your prospective clients.

Outbound marketing isn’t easy, plus it can be a hit or miss. Sometimes you kill it, sometimes you get killed with a blunder. While success isn’t always guaranteed, you can always make sure you don’t make costly mistakes that’ll ruin your business.

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