These days, many ambitious young students use their college years to implement their personal projects. Some start personal blogs hoping to gain popularity and recognition. Others launch student startups in pursuit of success and financial freedom. And, there is always one thing everyone engaged in such projects has in common – lacking funding and human resources, they often have to deal with the marketing part on their own, and they make plenty of mistakes on their path.
Trying to master the art of digital marketing without any hands-on experience and the support of an established professional is sure tough. Not only do students not have enough free time to handle this effectively, but they also often leverage ineffective channels and strategies that don’t bring them any closer to their goals.
If that’s your case, don’t freak out just yet. As a student marketing a personal blog or startup, you will definitely face plenty of issues. But, there is always a way to mitigate risks and get on the right track. Right now, delegate your college tasks to any paper writing service to get support from professional writers and save enough time for your marketing efforts. And read this article to learn about the top ineffective channels and strategies that you should avoid.
Not Using a Buyer Persona
Many beginner entrepreneurs and bloggers start promoting their resources, leaving a lot of guesswork. This is natural, especially if you are not very experienced in online advertising. But, this approach won’t take you anywhere. In fact, this is the biggest mistake you want to avoid.
Without having a clear vision of your ideal buyer persona or target audience, you can’t identify their interests and pain points. As a result, you can’t cater to their needs effectively and make them want to read/buy from you.
According to experts, getting to know your audience is the key to success. So, here is how you can do this:
- Think about the groups of people who will be interested in your blog or product;
- Conduct market and competitor research;
- Talk to your prospects directly to define their needs and expectations.
These three simple tricks will help you get on the right track in your marketing strategy and ensure the best outcomes.
Marketing Through All Social Media Channels
Now, don’t get this one wrong. Social media IS effective for digital advertising. Moreover, social media can offer you some of the highest ROIs for your campaigns, but only if you use it right.
With such a wide variety of platforms, it can be hard for inexperienced users to identify the best channels for their campaigns. Namely, there is Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, LinkedIn, and many other opportunities that work well for specific types of products and audiences. But, if you feel like leveraging them all at once is a great idea, that’s not true.
To give you an example, Facebook and Instagram can provide good results for many different groups of consumers and business types, whereas LinkedIn is mostly good for marketing B2B goods. Your task is to define what kind of social media is right for you and the type of audience you are trying to reach.
Engaging in Affiliate/Referral Marketing Too Early
Affiliate and referral programs are very similar. They imply asking existing clients and other outside individuals to promote your goods in exchange for a commission from every sale attributed to their efforts. This means of advertising can’t really be called ineffective. But, it’s not right for everyone.
A student blog or startup that is still relatively young and doesn’t have a solid number of devoted clients or readers yet will not likely benefit from this approach. First of all, it would be hard to attract affiliates or referrals.
On top of that, it’s worth mentioning that this type of marketing puts your personal brand’s reputation in someone else’s hands. So, when your reputation isn’t firm yet, it might not be the best decision to rely on such advertising too much. Besides, this type of advertising often requires more careful tracking and measuring, so it can be hard to keep up with if you are a busy student.
Not Keeping an Eye on Your Competitors
When you are just getting started with your startup or blog, it can be easy to overlook the competition and start promoting without looking back at someone. But, the truth is that whatever the topic of your source is or whatever product or service you offer – there is always someone who has already done that. And looking at them can give you plenty of insights on what you should and shouldn’t do.
Keeping an eye on your competitors can bring many benefits. It will help you see what audiences they target, what kind of content they create, and what other tricks they use to achieve results. Also, it will help you see how your blog or brand can differentiate from your competitors.
Most importantly, by analyzing the competition, you can get an idea of what mistakes your competitors have made on their path and avoid making them yourself. So, if you are currently marketing without looking back at the competition, that’s ineffective, and you should change it ASAP.
PPC Without Proper Targeting
Hoping to get the desired results fast and save time, many young marketers decide to leverage the power of PPC (pay-per-click) advertising and get cruelly disappointed in this marketing means. And the issue is almost always a lack of proper targeting.
Here is a thing – PPC can be incredibly effective and bring stunning results. Yet, there are two main components of success that you must keep in mind – you have to reach the right people and do this with the right message. That’s the formula for success.
If you lack one or both of these components, you will likely waste plenty of time and money on PPC and won’t receive any tangible results. So, this is one more thing to avoid. But, if you carefully target the right people and craft the right message that addresses their pain points and needs, you will succeed.
Content Marketing Without SEO
Whether it is content for your social media, blog, or startup website, if there is no SEO, you are losing plenty of opportunities. Long gone are the days when you could benefit from content marketing without adding some SEO magic to it.
So, if you are still there, be sure to change this as soon as possible. Study the specs of SEO, find tactics that work for your competitors, identify the strongest keywords, and start using SEO to your benefit.
The Bottom Line
These days, there are plenty of channels, tactics, and strategies for digital marketing. So getting lost among them is easy, especially when you are just getting started and lack experience.
Luckily, now you know about some of the most ineffective means of marketing that should be avoided. Each of these mistakes could make you waste lots of time and money without any tangible results. But, knowing about them, you should be able to create a winning digital marketing strategy that will help you attain your objectives. Good luck!