Why Small Business Marketing Fails

Marketing is complicated and resource intensive.

Which is why big companies, with big resources, tend to excel at it and smaller businesses, with fewer resources, often fail.

While failures range from underperformance to complete disasters, small businesses that want to better market themselves—in other words, cost effectively increase their leads and sales—face some fundamental challenges:

Lack of Coordinated, Integrated Marketing Plan

Many businesses unfortunately don’t have the time, marketing expertise or analytic skills needed to develop an integrated marketing plan for growth. So they often pick a single marketing tactic based on “their gut”, or pick the same tactic that worked for a colleague in a different industry with the end result too often being expensive disappointment (e.g., a new website that doesn’t help as much as your gut “thought”, a direct mail campaign less successful at generating qualified leads than your colleague’s, etc.).

Besides the obvious downsides of picking a single marketing tactic to grow your business based on your digestive tract, or what worked in a completely different industry, there’s a more fundamental problem: depending on any one single marketing tactic for growth is a recipe for failure. This is because each marketing tactic has its own strengths, weaknesses, costs and benefits and it’s only when they’re deployed as part of an intelligent, coordinated, integrated strategy will cost effective, sustainable growth be possible.

Unfortunately, buyers can’t rely on outside marketing agencies to be honest about their tactic because they’re trying to win your business. If you ask an ad agency or web developer what’s the best way to generate leads, they will undoubtedly say advertising or a new web site respectively. The truth, however, is that advertising and websites have to be integrated and work together: ads have to bring qualified traffic to a website and the site’s messages and content have to motivate those visitors to become leads by calling or submitting a form. Unfortunately, both vendors will pretend their tactic stands alone and are not dependent on any other tactic because the ad agency can’t improve your website and web developers can’t create ad campaigns.

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Lack of In-House Expertise

Even if you had a coordinated, integrated marketing plan, marketing today is so multi-disciplinary and complex it is not possible nor affordable for a small to mid-sized business to have all the marketing, technology and analytics expertise they might need in-house:
Marketing Expertise Needed In-House

This gap is typically filled by freelancers and outside agencies. Unfortunately, finding, hiring and managing these folks and their many projects is quite time consuming and challenging.

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Contact us to Help Prevent Marketing Failures

“Unfortunately, most marketing problems are multidisciplinary yet most marketing agencies are specialists, solely focusing on one marketing silo: advertising, PR, trade shows, SEO, websites, direct mail, telemarketing, social media, etc.”

3 Steps to Marketing Success

1. Develop a Marketing Blueprint – a comprehensive look at the strategies, marketing programs, sales-enabling technology and budget your business needs to cost effectively grow its leads & sales.

2. Build out your Blueprint – Set up all the people, expertise, technology and tools needed to successfully implement your marketing plan.

3. Run your Marketing Program – Put your plan into action, focusing on the day-to-day marketing and technology work and monitoring progress for continuous improvement. At the beginning of every quarter, review all marketing activities ROI’s during the previous quarter and make adjustments.


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