4 Common Mistakes When Starting a Marketing Campaign

May 18, 2015

Throughout life we are often told, “if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” However, when it comes to marketing, often times you only have one chance to impress your prospective customers and C-level executives. With this in mind, it is crucial that you give yourself a fighting chance prior to starting your marketing campaign.

4 Mistakes to Avoid Before Starting a New Marketing Campaign

To help you get the most out of your marketing campaign, we have gathered together the top four most common pre-campaign marketing mistakes.

Mistake #1 – Failure to Establish KPIs (Goals)

Before your marketing campaign can begin you must first establish realistic goals. To do this, ask yourself the following types of questions:

  • Who is my target audience?
  • What should this marketing campaign achieve?
    • More social media reaches?
    • Generate new leads?
    • Re-connect with past audiences?
    • Establish new B2B relationships?
    • Strengthen brand image?
    • Nurture existing leads?
  • Does the success of this marketing campaign rely on additional efforts?
  • Will this be a one-time or solo campaign?
  • Can I track, measure, and analyze campaign results?

Failing to set timelines and achievable goals will sink your marketing campaign before it launches. As you establish goals, keep in mind that smart marketing goals will be: specific, measurable, attainable, and rely on a set timeline.

Mistake #2 – Not Identifying the Proper Target Audience

Marketing campaigns are only as successful as their ability to identify and target the appropriate audience. You must familiarize yourself with your intended audience before you can begin a marketing campaign. The following types of questions will help you to identify and speak-to any target audience:

  • What is my target demographic?
  • Does my marketing campaign speak to a certain geographic area?
  • What words are used most often by my chosen audience?
    • Does my marketing campaign “speak their language?”
  • Will my audience be responsive to my marketing campaign?
    • Does my marketing campaign “speak to” something that is important to my intended audience?

Why should my audience pay any attention? (This last question is designed to help you understand the mind-set of your audience. If you don’t know why your audience will listen or pay attention, then you won’t be able to design a marketing campaign that speaks to their unique set of needs.)

Mistake #3 – Not Effectively Measuring Your Campaign Results

If you’re not tracking your marketing campaign, then you are making a terrible mistake. Failure to track your marketing campaigns, from start to finish, is a failure to not only your company, but also to your customers. By tracking your campaigns you can answer valuable customer questions and further understand the mindset of your intended audience. For example, you can best determine how your customers respond to different marketing media. Tracking also helps you to establish a marketing environment of continuous improvements. In short, tracking lets you learn from your current campaign, so that you can improve results during future campaigns.

Your tracking methods need to answer the following important questions:

  • What parts of the campaign were most successful?
  • How did this campaign compare to other campaigns?
  • Once you have answered the latter questions, you will be able to more readily avoid mistake number four.

Mistake #4 – Failure to Assign a Value to Customer Conversion

When it comes to assigning a value to customer conversion, there are three main metrics that you will need to track. Together, the following metrics will help you to assign an accurate value to customer conversion. Failure to use these metrics will make it incredibly hard for you to determine if your campaign was an ROI-enhancing success.

1. Customer Acquisition Cost
Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) can be calculated by dividing the total costs associated with an acquisition by total new customers over a specific time period. Knowing and understanding the CAC timeline can help you answer what campaigns have consistently delivered the best results.

2. Lifetime Value of a Customer
The lifetime value of your customer is the numeric value that should be assigned to each customer over your company’s lifetime. It can be calculated in two ways:

  • Historic Lifetime Value of a Customer — the sum of the gross profit from all historic purchase for an individual customer.
  • Predictive Analysis of a Customer — predictive analysis of previous transaction history, combined with behavioral indicators to forecast the lifetime value of a customer.

3. Cost Per Lead
Cost per lead is the average amount of money that you have to spend on one marketing channel to attract a new lead (who spends a specific amount). It can be calculated as ad spend / lead = cost per lead. Cost per lead can be used to help you to better determine where to spend your marketing budget to receive the highest ROI.

By avoiding the aforementioned four mistakes, you will give yourself the foundation needed to create a successful marketing campaign. Remember, you might only have one try to “get it right,” so, give yourself a fighting chance by avoiding these mistakes, and, instead choosing to focus on producing a brilliant marketing campaign that connects with your intended audience.