‘Tis the season to be merry.
86% of retailers expect growth this holiday season, despite most having no plans to increase their digital marketing budgets (Source).
And it’s not just retailers.
As KPIs and targets are being set for 2015, lots of businesses will be on the lookout for products, tools, and services that can help their companies start the new year off with a bang.
But with all the money that will be made this holiday season, there will also be a lot of money lost.
Here’s my top five ways to waste your marketing budget:
1. Mismanaging Pay Per Click Campaigns
Wasted Pay Per Click ad spend: we see it all the time. Whether it’s Google AdWords, Bing Ads, display, video, or whatever, you need to make sure you’re not throwing away your budget. Here are just some of the most common mistakes we see:
- Bidding on very broad keywords that can have a high cost per click (CPC) and don’t necessarily match the user’s search intent to your product or service.
- Failing to add keyword modifiers and/or negative keywords to ensure your ad doesn’t appear for irrelevant searches.
- Forgetting to structure your campaigns in a way that can help you manage them better and lower costs, such as leveraging keyword match-types, geo-locating, and/or mobile or device.
- After someone clicks on your ad, sending them to your homepage instead of a landing page that is relevant to the users search intent and is designed for conversion.
- Not implementing the proper tracking and technologies that can help you track back clicks, conversions, and phone calls to help calculate your ROI.
2. Not Remembering to Retarget
This holiday season people will be browsing, researching, and conducting comparison shopping to help find what their looking for, at the price they’re looking for.
In other words, don’t expect people to stay on your site.
But retargeting can help recapture those who click away by continuing to marketing to them when they leave your site in the form of display or search ads.
Vendors such as AdRoll, Perfect Audience, and even Google have platforms that will show relevant ads to your visitors after the leave your site to visit Facebook, The New York Times, or any other website participating in an ad network.
Retargeting can help bring window-shoppers back to your site and get you the lead, conversion, or sale.
3. Overlooking Website Optimization and Conversion
It’s a stat I tell clients about all the time: $92 is spent on attracting clients to your website for every $1 spent converting them.
If your website is not designed for conversion, you’re wasting money.
- Does your site have primary conversion goals (quote, sale, etc.) and secondary conversion goals (email signup, Facebook like, etc.). And are you tracking them?
- Most visitors don’t land on your site from the homepage. On all other pages is it clear who you are, what you do, who your product is for, and what the user can do (e.g. free trial, get quote, subscribe, etc.)?
- In your sign-up or contact forms, are you asking users questions that will reduce the likelihood of them completion your form, such as their title, annual revenue, and/or when they expect to buy?
- Are you implementing split and multivariate tests on your website to increase conversions, leads, and sales?
- Do you have an irresistible offer on your website that will ensure people take action “now” as opposed to clicking away, and potentially losing the lead forever?
If your answer is “no” to all of the above, you may want to think about adding some Website Optimization services to your marketing strategy.
4. Neglecting Channel and Device Integration
90% of US consumers expect the customer experience to be consistent across channels and devices used to interact with brands during the 2014 holiday shopping season (Source).
Whether it’s in-store, online, on mobile, or even on Facebook, more and more customers are demanding a consistent, integrated customer experience (and even willing to pay more for it).
If your customers have a different in-store, mobile, or online experience – whether it’s price, quantities, lack of info, non mobile-friendly website – they are going to be frustrated.
This holiday season, focus on a consistent, seamless customer experience and your customers will thank you for it, by coming back next year.
5. Not Planning for Post Holiday Engagement
Your business may get lots of traffic, leads, and even sales this holiday season, but you need to be thinking long-term.
Here’s a few tips to keep customers engaged into 2015 and beyond:
- For prospects, create an email drip campaign, or a series of emails that highlight your value, how you’re different, and why your prospect should do business with you.
- Implement a referral marketing campaign that leverages your current customers to encourage referrals of their friends, family, and followers to your business.
- Develop a content strategy that provides value to prospects and customers: tips, tricks, stats, how-tos,ebooks, white papers, infographics, news, or anything that helps make the lives of your customers easier.
- Similarly, develop a Social Media strategy that makes sense for your business. Do you want to use SM to get more traffic? More leads? Deliver better service? All of the above? Start by aligning your SM strategy to your business goals.
- Get feedback. Whether it’s in the form of a survey, review, phone call, or face-to-face meeting, make a plan to garner more feedback from your customers and turn that insight into action.
Good luck this holiday season and beyond. And if you ever need any Digital Marketing help, please don’t hesitate to give us a call.