In an era when technology and marketing trends change on a dime, the kiss of death is looking out of touch.
We might dig vintage design, nostalgic throwback posts and old-timey music but no one digs outdated marketing. At best, it makes you look behind the times and at worst it makes potential customers think you’re not good enough.
No matter how charming you think your old school methods are, you have to face the fact that, with every passing year, these outdated practices are making your company appear more and more irrelevant.
So, it’s time to take a hard look at the way your business is marketed so you can get rid of the old and welcome the new.
When companies first jumped on the social media train, it was common to see nothing but yawn-inducing, self-congratulatory updates that resembled an awkward cross between a newsletter and an ad campaign. But those days are long gone and today’s savvy social media users expect a whole lot more if they’re going to give you their attention or their business.
Your company’s social media pages are not the place for a hard sell to would-be customers nor are they a place to shout your latest accomplishments. Sure, you can pepper a few of those in occasionally, but the bulk of your posts should fall in the realm of entertainment or useful information that your followers will really and truly appreciate.
2. Your Blog is Totally Self-Serving
The same theory that guides your social media should also rule your blogosphere. As you brainstorm topics for content on your own blog or other sites where you contribute, put yourself in the shoes of your customer and cut out anything that they wouldn’t find interesting or beneficial.
A blog that is all about why your company is so awesome is an immediate tip off that it’s actually way behind in the times. If you want to blog about a new change within the company or the industry, include in a list of other exciting changes that will benefit or impact your customer’s experience in the new year. Otherwise, frankly, they just won’t care.
3. You’re Tweeting Just to Tweet
There’s a mistaken (and grossly outdated) belief among some marketers and business owners that the key to social media success is frequent posting. If you Tweet it, they will come, right? Wrong. While consistent posting is important, quality always trumps quantity.
Although each social media platform requires a different posting frequency, keep in mind that your followers are smart enough to recognize when you’re posting for the sheer sake of posting and they’ll roll their collective eyes at your old-school approach. As your teacher used to say, if you don’t have anything nice to say, say nothing at all.
4. Your Website Copy is Awkwardly Keyword-Driven
In the olden days of SEO, the keyword was king and ruled with a powerful and awkward fist, turning all of your website’s copy into garbage. But in today’s SEO landscape, this sort of hardcore keyword optimization is not only ineffective but can actually be harmful to your website in both organic and algorithmic ways.
Obviously no human wants to read copy that’s being driven by your geocentric keywords, so visitors will be clicking the back button before they even get to your pitch. Additionally, Google will actually penalize your site for being stuffed with too many keywords. As with most things that help, keywords need to be doled out in moderation or they begin to hurt.
5. You’re Spending Money on Obsolete Formats
If you haven’t recognized the fact that new forms of communication are not just dominating the old, but making it obsolete, you’re marking yourself as terribly outdated. Still doling out cash for print mailers or newspaper ads? Stop.
Unless you know for damn sure that your customer base still relies heavily on one of these older forms of marketing, you need to pack it in immediately. That money would be much better used on social media advertising, website upgrades or a video marketing campaign. When it comes to marketing, invest in the future, not the past.
6. “Always Be Closing” Is Your Marketing Mantra
The old school of marketing thought told business leaders to “always be closing” but today’s consumers can sniff a sales pitch from a mile away and they know that they don’t have to listen. If the feeling that people get from your marketing is that of a greased-up 70s salesman, you’re doing it wrong.
Instead, take the approach of that rare bird, the cool kid who also happens to be super nice to everyone in school. The cool nice guy doesn’t need to sell himself aggressively, because that’s clearly desperate and off-putting. He knows that what makes people love him is that he’s actually kind and smart and charming. It’s the very same idea with your company – stop talking the talk and start walking the walk when it comes to customer care, killer services or products and genuine value.
If you want your company to stay relevant, it’s critical that the image you portray is just as relevant. And if you don’t feel that you can do that on your own, it’s time to hire an individual or team who can.
Just as it’s always been, the companies who succeed most are those who are best equipped to be agile and forward-thinking in an ever-changing world.Digital & Social Articles on Business 2 Community