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4 Marketing Mistakes In Nigeria That Can Send Your Business Into Exile

Gudtalent Chrisent

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4 Marketing Mistakes you must avoid

Many Business owners are seriously making some marketing mistakes that will affect them in a horrible way. The purpose of a marketing plan is to define the necessary steps to achieve your business goals. There’s a big difference between writing out something that sounds good and something that actually works.

Here I have shared four common marketing mistakes and wrong assumptions that could ruin your business.

marketing mistakes you make

Common Marketing Mistakes

  1. Over-dependence on What Worked Before

Just as the popular saying goes and I quote “change is the only thing constant in life” “If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it” isn’t a strategy. That’s not to say that you can’t build on previous successes, but if you simply expect past successes to continue, you may fail to identify new opportunities or address new issues that are now potentially threatening.

I and my team once went for a marketing proposal in Owerri, The moment we brought up the issue of digital marketing, the Manager said he doesn’t know what digital marketing is all about, but after giving him the run-down of what digital marketing is all about, he adopted the idea and in 3 months’ time, the company increased sales by 30%.

Now if they didn’t adopt the new idea about digital marketing and depended only on the traditional/analog means of marketing which is becoming less important because people no longer buy newspapers and magazines the way they use to buy it before, he wouldn’t have made that extra 30% increase in sales.

Many companies try to ignore competitor innovations and focus, incorrectly, on incremental improvements to their existing product lines. Forbes draws lessons from Blackberry’s decline from being the dominant smartphone manufacturer after they sold Blackberry Messenger (BBM) to android producers. Similarly, Sony fell from grace due to their lack of innovation, and plainly, ideas. The inventor of the portable music player terminated production of the iconic Walkman recently, on the anniversary of the day the iPhone was announced.

These companies saw themselves as makers of things; their job was to keep improving those things. But modern marketers think of themselves as customer satisfaction companies and focus on what customers want and what customers are saying about your product.

Related: How Tecno Mobile survived the Nigerian Market

  1. If You Build It, They Will Come

Only in the movies. As Susan Carter, business operations expert and editor of Success Stories points out, “there is a misconception among small business owners that, with the right product or service, your customers will simply ‘find’ you when you open for business.”

Most small business owners are focusing so much on making their product or providing their service and they fail to inform potential customers that the product or service exists, and how it benefits them.

  1. Your Customers Will Want What You Want

I want to ask you, have you ever used your money to buy what you don’t like just because the product owner or service provider tells you to buy it? Of course no, you think your product or service is the coolest thing since the invention of sliced bread. Be careful in assuming that what appeals to you necessarily appeals to your customer base.

Consider the Arch Deluxe burger from McDonald’s. McDonald’s saw a growing trend among consumers for better quality fast food, and the idea was to create a burger with an appeal to more sophisticated diners. The problem is that more sophisticated diners don’t go to McDonald’s.

You need to be in touch with the needs and wants of your customers. Product innovation should flow from the ground up. That means, the source of ideas should come from customer analysis and customer input, then be worked out at headquarters—not cooked up at HQ and then sprung on customers.

Related Article10 Types of people that will ruin your business.

  1. Playing Follow the Leader

When you see a competitor’s success, it’s tempting to want to put your hand up and say, “me, too!” That’s what Microsoft did when it saw the sales for Apple’s iPad. So far, Microsoft has lost $1.7 billion on its Surface tablets. Worse, Microsoft is paying the NFL $400 million in a package that supplies players and coaches with Surface tablets, yet television commentators continue to refer to the devices as iPads.

Think carefully about a me-too strategy. You have to sell at a significantly lower price point to even play catch-up. If you’re not leveraging core competencies, following the leader isn’t likely to get you anywhere. Microsoft is primarily a software company that has been very successful in business sales, not a hardware company making consumer products. They should leverage what they know best by innovating around core business customer needs. When you see your competitor doing better, don’t panic, take your time and analyze their secrets of success and take not of their weakness, and improve on it and watch how you will ride above them.

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I'm that Lazy and controversial entrepreneur, Popularly known for my Quora Secrets. Founder and CEO of SumoTrust, Motute and CrowdFacture. Read about my Bio at personal website. Connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Google, Linkedin and Instagram.

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Digital Marketing 101 for Small and Medium Businesses in Nigeria

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To start with, we have to know what digital marketing is and why it is very important to integrate it into the building of your small scale and medium sized businesses.

Digital marketing is an avenue for promoting products and service through the internet with the use of web-based or web-enabled/enhanced digital technologies such as desktop computers, mobile phones, and other digital media platforms.

Every business whether small-scaled or medium-scaled need digital marketing to grow. The use of digital marketing in business can help to drive brand awareness and tell people more about a business thereby drawing customers’ attention and making sales. Digital or Online marketing can be done through platforms like social media, a business’s (i.e., company’s) own website, search engine rankings, email, display advertising and other kinds of incentivized advertising strategies done with ICT tools or via the internet.

Digital Marketing 101 For Small And Medium Businesses In Nigeria

Digital Marketing 101 For Small And Medium Businesses In Nigeria

The knowledge of Online marketing is vital for businesses and aspiring business owners must make effort to include it right from the kickoff stage of their business. Just like new students offer 101 (i.e., foundation) courses to introduce them to the basics of their course, business startups and startup founders need to get the proper orientation on digital marketing for managing and making good turnaround in their businesses. This is important whether you are a small business, a medium business or a big/large business. The knowledge of digital marketing is one knowledge that can (and will) surely help you to have a successful business.

Below covers some fundamentals of digital marketing and explains the reasons for digital marketing in business:

(1) Digital marketing Helps In Goals and Targets Setting.

Every business has a goal and target it wants to meet in say 5 to 10 years. For instance, as a business owner you might want to reach a million customers in 3 countries in 10 years. This is a big goal and only digital marketing can help you to achieve this.

This may not be your goal but every business has similar goals as this. To meet them, you need to apply several strategies of which digital marketing comes top.

Before now, when we had to send letters to friends and family or business partners and the rest, we used post offices and these letters and messages did not get to them until after days. Also, people only did their businesses within their immediate environments and only few people knew about it which eventually brought very little sales and profits.

Now, you can sit at the comfort of your office or business location and reach customers thousands of miles away from you by the help of social media, emails, search engines and advertorials on blogs, websites, and forums. This is what we call digital marketing. Goals which looked unattainable to people and businesses decades ago can now be achieved through the help of digital marketing with ease.

(2) You Need Digital marketing To Create Awareness and Potential for Your Business.

Digital marketing can help you to discover the potential of your business and how big it can get. It helps you to determine how much your business can generate and how far it can go.

With digital marketing, you can easily know and have a better understanding of your target market, online audience and people who are searching for and need your product(s) or service(s).

Adequate knowledge of online marketing is what businesses that have gone big use in improving and expanding their reach and evaluating their strategies. You simply won’t know your online audience and market place without effective digital marketing.

(3) Digital marketing Assists to Beat the Competition

You can keep up with competition when you apply digital or online marketing to your  business strategy. You will find out that you can reach more customers too and expand just like other businesses can.

(4) It Helps You To Maintain Relevance in the Market

Most contemporary businesses that stay in the market for a long time and become successful used digital marketing to do that. The world is moving very fast and everything is going digital so only businesses that go digital too stay relevant.

A lot of things have gone from manual to automatic. Not many people still go to stores to buy goods or services. Rather, because more people now spend most of their time online, they can easily see product and/or services they need online, order them and get them delivered to their doorsteps.

If your business has an online presence, you can sell to targeted buyers online too and make good profits with less stress. On the contrary, you will keep selling only to the people who can sacrifice their time to come patronize you physically. Of course, the number of people who fall into this category these days is getting fewer.

Now that you know the importance of Internet marketing in businesses growth and success, the question could be, “How Do I Implement This Digital Marketing in My Business to Make It Grow?”

It starts with deciding on the digital marketing strategy or platform that you wish to use. This is essentially choosing the areas of digital marketing that would be best to use for your small-sized business or medium-sized business.

Top 4 Digital Marketing Options to Choose From

There are many options that you can deploy in your online marketing endeavor. However, I am of the opinion that the following are the pivot on which the majority of other digital marketing strategies hang:

  1. Social Media Marketing
  2. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  3. Content Marketing
  4. Email Marketing

Let’s see what each of them entail in detail:

(1) Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing is the use if social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Instagram and other social media platforms to connect with your audience to build your business/brand, reach wider audiences and increase sales.

Social media marketing is a great way to start digital marketing as a small business owner. It is easier and mostly free to use. It only comes with charges when you intend to further expand your business by leveraging paid adverts to reach wider audiences.

Let’s take a look at what you can do yourself in social media marketing your business yourself.  Facebook is a very popular social media platform for marketing. First, you open a page that talks about your business. Then, invite your friends to like the page and post your products there for them to see. You can also post in groups you are in and also on your wall and get a team that will help you amplify these posts.

Some groups have been built by social media influencers into potential market places. Some of those groups with over 50,000 members can be good to post about the goods and services you render. What you just do is contact the administrator of the group and negotiate for a front page allowance for a period of time. You can also apply this strategy to other social media platforms and even forums with constant visits. This is a great way to increase sales and traffic for your website.

(3) Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search engines nowadays are almost the number one gateway to many websites because when you search for something online on a search engine like Google, the websites with arguably the most relevant information displays. This is as a result of search engine optimization done by the owners or administrators of such websites. Search engine optimization simply means carefully arranging your site to increase its visibility for relevant searches. This can lead more people to your site and convert this traffic (i.e., visitors) into (repeat) paying customers.

(3) Content Marketing

This is the creating, publishing, and distributing relevant content to help target audiences. You can do this by guest-posting (i.e., guest-blogging) on other blogs/websites, placing valuable contents on forums, sharing contents on social media, advertising on digital magazines, brochures, yellowpages, etc.

(4) Email Marketing

Email marketing is the type that help you keep customers aware of you products and services. You can read more about email marketing strategies for better conversions here. If you are new to email marketing and you wish to know how to go about it, g ahead and read this article. It will surely help you to kick start your email marketing on the right footing.

Conclusion

This article shared the basics of digital marketing. It explained the concept of digital or online marketing and covered the importance of it. Furthermore, it explained the different digital marketing platforms and strategies available and how to choose them for your business. Beside the ones mentioned here, understand that there are other digital media marketing tools out there. This include Voice SEO, video marketing and Pay Per Click (PPC) Adverts. These have their peculiar advantages and I invite you to leverage them also for the success of your business.

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All You Need To Know About Social Media Integration: A Guide

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How To Start Email Marketing in Nigeria – Beginnner’s Guide

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How To Start Email Marketing in Nigeria

Email marketing is a digital marketing strategy through which you communicate with people, present them your offer(s) and make sales or promote your services online.

If you run a business whether online or offline, you should consider this marketing strategy as it is by far cost-effective compared to other forms of marketing like Content marketing. Besides, it is easy to implement especially when you know what to do and how to do it professionally.

Considering that a lot of businesses are looking for cost-effective means to boost their sales and increasing their brand awareness, I decided to write this short beginner’s guide on email marketing. I have made it short and straight to the point.

How To Start Email Marketing in Nigeria

How To Start Email Marketing in Nigeria

N/B: This is not a full course on email marketing but rather a simplified guide on how email marketing works and the basic things that you should know about it.

Let’s go!

Step 1: Choose an Email Marketing Software/Platform

There are  a good deal of software for email-marketing: Getresponse, Aweber, Mailchimp, Convertkit, etc. Some of these are free while some are paid. Among the paid ones, there are free plans to enable users test their platforms and decide whether to do email marketing with them or not.

For example with Mailchimp, you can have up to 2000 email subscribers to which you can send email campaigns to Free of Charge forever. When you exceed this number of contacts, you’d have to pay a monthly fee to have your email contacts on the Mailchimp platform.

Please, note that you may not be able to perform advanced email automations like setting up autoresponders with the free emailing plan on Mailchimp.

On Getresponse, you have access to all the emailing features including advanced automations for one month free. After this time, you’d have to pay a monthly fee if you wish to continue your email marketing business with them.

Other companies have their own terms and conditions.

Step 2: Acquire Your Subscribers

There are 2 ways to get contacts into in your email list.

Method 1 is to strategically place an opt-in form on your website/blog/landing page. This form could be in the header, footer, sidebar of your website. You could also configure your opt-in form -with an offer to automatically show within your blog posts/articles.

Another strategy is to configure an exit-intent popup to show a form luring visitors who want to exit/leave your website to subscribe to newsletters, sign-up for an event or get a gift (i.e., an e-book or a free course). If they agree, they would give-in and in the process subscribe to your email list.

Outside your site, you can link to this form when running an ad online either on a social media platform or on a third party website.

This way, you give people the liberty to subscribe to your email list or forgo it. It is the best way to grow an email list as people who subscribe do so at their own volition and give you the consent to email them.

Method 2 is to buy an email list from a vendor and manually add or upload to your email contacts list. This is not recommended although people do it at times.

Chances are that many of the contacts could unsubscribe from your list since they don’t know you and did not give you the permission to email them.

On noticing the massive unsubscribes, your email marketing company could penalize you or disable your account. So, I do not recommend this approach unless you know what to do.

Step 3: Stop Spam: Configure Double Opt-in.

The idea of activating double opt-in in email marketing is to keep off spammers from your email list.

You want only serious people to subscribe to your list. So, you ask every user to login to his/her email and click a link from you in their email to confirm that they give you consent to email them.

That way, people who came with the intent of supplying a fake email address or a dysfunctional email address or an email address that is not working would be kept off.

There are settings within every email marketing software to activate double opt-ins. Check the one you use and configure. However, you may want to be lenient and allow users to opt-in to your email list without activating a double opt-in.

Step 4: Create Your Campaign & Send, Setup Automations

After someone opts-in to your email list, what follows is to send them email campaigns. An email campaign is simply the message that you send to your subscriber. This could be a simple plain text message, a video, a picture, an infographic or a combination of all of these.

The email that you send to your email subscriber is simply the email campaign.

Now, you should configure your email such immediately someone subscribes to your list he/she gets an email from you such like a “Welcome Email” or “Thank You”.

You should have programmed your email system to be sending him/her emails in sequences so that your business stays afloat on auto-pilot without you writing and sending emails every time.

This is what is known as email automation and this is configured in your email autoresponder.

Of course, you have to write these emails and schedule them to auto-send themselves to contacts on your email list. Where you can’t write the emails yourself, you can simply hire someone to write them for you. All you do is take them and schedule in your email autoresponder to send when you set them to send.

This does not mean that you’d not be sending occasional fresh emails to your contacts. No sir! From time to time you would have new offers, new launches, new products and/services which your subscribers may be interested in. So, you’d write them emails on these offers.

You can see from this that email automation is a basic part of email marketing while sending of fresh, occasional emails is equally important.

Rounding Off…

Dear reader, the idea behind email marketing is to make sales. So, whatever you’re doing should be targeted towards this whether its is obvious or not.

This means you should get your copywriting skills up to standard.

You should know how to customize your messages in your email text editor

You must know how and where to place links to your offer to attract more conversions

You must know how to configure the autoresponder in your email marketing software

You must know how to segment, tag, and categorize your subscribers and track their activities within your emails.

And many more!!!

It is not a less than 30-minutes lesson like this guide. You need to learn and practice email marketing like a course. This could take weeks or months.

This brief article cannot teach you everything on email marketing no matter how hard I try. If you need such training, go on YouTube and stream/download courses on email marketing and learn from basic to advance.

As I step aside, I leave you with some tips which will help you on this journey of email marketing.

See a few tested strategies that can help you to have better conversions with your email marketing efforts in Nigeria today below:

  1. Use simple, attractive yet powerful subject lines
  2. Use appropriate graphics in your email body
  3. Create Value Using Your Emails
  4. Write Mobile-friendly Emails
  5. Optimize Your Links Placement
  6. Track your subscriber’s activities and use this to optimize your marketing
  7. Encourage Email Sharing
  8. Respond/Reply emails
  9. Personalize Your Emails
  10. Test emails before sending

That’s all for now on email marketing. Meanwhile, you may want to see how to make passive income with email marketing. Till next time, bye.

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