2 Marketing Strategies to Abandon in 2018
As times change, so do effective marketing strategies. What used to work in 2017 may no longer do this year. What are some strategies that we need to let go of? And is there an alternative to replace them?
Strategy No. 1: Relying on Facebook Organic Reach Alone
Since the introduction of its “pages” feature, Facebook has been a substantial resource for businesses to market their products for free. It became easy to get your message in front of customers. Anything posted by your page was seen by your fans. This was essentially free marketing and considered organic reach.
Over the last couple of years, Facebook has altered their algorithm and organic reach has been on a steady decline. Now, posts published by Facebook pages don’t reach page fans unless you pay to promote them as ads. It’s understandable that Facebook, as a business, loses money by giving everyone free advertising.
For awhile, the only place your page posts would show up (for free) was through Facebook’s Explore feed, an experiment with an alternative feed launched in October 2017. The feed was designed to help users discover relevant content beyond the posts and pages they already follow. But users also had to consciously choose to view this feed from the main menu.
Following the launch last year, Boosterberg explained how the launch of Facebook’s new Explore feed would be the final nail in the coffin for organic reach. “Facebook has rolled out Explore Feed across the board for all users in 5 countries so far, and according to a spokesperson, a large-scale usability test is being conducted. Nevertheless, it’s better to be prepared, because similar changes will probably follow worldwide.”
Unfortunately, as of March 1, Facebook decided to kill the Explore Feed experiment. According to an article from TechCrunch, response to the two split feeds was lackluster, and many users were frustrated when they were unable to "receive important information that they needed after the change took effect, and that they had no idea what ... was going on with their feeds."
Until another solution comes along, this means marketers will need to consider boosting posts as paid ads if they feel their content isn't reaching their audience of followers.
Strategy No. 2: Untargeted Lead Magnets
When your lead magnet appeals to a general audience, you’ll get a database full of contacts by the thousands, but when you market to them, your efforts will fall flat.
A lead magnet is designed to do more than just capture leads. It’s a strategy for qualifying your leads. For instance, if you’re selling medical equipment in bulk, the general public isn’t your market. If your lead magnet appeals to the end user, you’ll get plenty of leads you can’t market your products to.
Lead magnets should appeal to your target market and be perceived as irrelevant to anyone outside of your market. They should be exclusive, literally excluding people who are outside your market.
The idea that nobody will take the time to fill out a long form just to get the lead magnet is false. This is an advanced marketing strategy. Thousands of businesses fill their databases with relevant leads through web forms asking multiple, qualifying questions.
Direct Mail: A Timeless Strategy
It’s okay to be skeptical about the efficiency of direct marketing, especially if you’ve never used it before. However, the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) discovered that direct mail lays claim to a 4.4% response rate while email marketing lags behind at 0.12%. That’s according to Yory Wurmser, the DMA’s director of marketing and media insights.
The delivery rate for direct mail is nearly 95% compared to email marketing at less than 50%. A higher delivery rate means a better chance to achieve a higher response rate.
People are bombarded with emails from marketers. Direct mail isn’t as cluttered, and even when a person receives multiple marketing pieces in the mail, it’s possible to make the envelope intriguing enough to open. In the digital world, all you have is a subject line.
With digital marketing, you’re relying on ever-evolving algorithms to determine whether your ad even reaches your target market. Direct mail is the only strategy that doesn’t rely on an evolving computer-generated algorithm to get your message in front of your target market.