9 Old School Marketing Tactics That Aren't Working for You

By the small business content developers at  BizLaunch.com.

As the use of search engines on mobile devices continues to grow and even surpass searches conducted on desktop computers, the marketing landscape is undergoing continuous evolution and changes. It’s important that your tactics develop and advance along with these changes or you risk getting left behind. Just as you wouldn’t use a handheld fan to cool your house if you have central air, you need to update your marketing plan in the same way. Here are 9 outdated marketing strategies that you should stop using.

1. Behaving as if the Internet doesn't exist.

The days when you could get away with not having a website are gone. With over 3.2 billion Internet users in the world, the best way to provide customers with information on your company and help them connect with you is to have an updated website that looks beautiful, loads quickly, and is mobile-friendly. While many businesses think that a Facebook page is good enough, placing too much power in another company’s hands can put your business in a challenging position when social media practices inevitably change.

2. Depending only on telephone directory listings.

In the last century, a fledgling company could purchase a listing in a telephone directory and have confidence that potential customers could find their company when and if they needed it. The days of directory assistance are long gone, and marketing plans have gotten a bit more detailed and refined. Now businesses need to have a solid digital marketing strategy in place from the outset.

3. Holding press conferences.

When every moderately large city had a newspaper or two and reporters were feverish for stories, an ambitious press conference could garner a mention or two in the dailies. However the consolidation of print media has left dwindling numbers of eager reporters. Today paid advertorials or sponsored content are the more likely way to get a prominent mention.

4. Cold calling potential customers.

Travelling salespeople have largely gone the way of the dodo because cold-calling is an arduous and low payoff activity. Telemarketing, its distant cousin, is on the way out too. Changes in how customers find goods and services have largely eroded any of the benefits of the hard sell. Today most customers and clients prefer to do research online before making a purchase or signing a contract.

5. Over-aggressive selling.

If you have gizmos to sell, you definitely want to make it easy for customers to make a purchase, but, in many cases, the road to a sale is not straight. Retailers and service providers also need a place on their websites to connect with customers. Engaging customers and clients is about telling stories that build trust and demonstrate the appeal of your product or service.

6. Keyword stuffing.

In the early days of SEO, many websites just repeated a few keywords with mountains of gibberish and saw their traffic increase overnight. Today, building your website’s search engine ranking (SER) takes dedication and high quality content. In addition, consumers are more sophisticated and your content must reflect that if you want to improve site’s prominence.

7. Using a purchased list.

If you’re using a purchased list to connect with potential customers, you might as well put your missives into bottles and drop them in the ocean where you might get better results and get some viral marketing buzz or maybe just a fine for littering. With all the technology available today, it’s relatively easy to collect potential buyers’ information. A pop-up or slide-in on your website will quickly help you collect contact information from people who are actually interested in your company — just remember to make unsubscribing easy.

8. Relying on banner ads.

While vintage fashion has been a strong trend for a while, there’s no similar nostalgia for marketing tactics from the ‘90s. Today’s tech has moved way past the banner ad with bumper ads and dynamic search ads playing just a small part in today’s immense advertising ecosystem. There are many ways to artfully deploy advertising and ensure that your marketing campaigns use tactics that consumers trust.

9. Counting on an overnight hit.

With slightly less than 1 billion websites currently in existence, the chances of your website gaining instant popularity are very, very low, and in many instances a significant surge in visitors might even take your website down, depending on your hosting plan. Many Internet success stories are not overnight successes. They are often the result of continual effort, strategic decisions, and excellent timing. Dedicated daily effort with an eye on long-term goals will help your business mature and develop in a significant way, bringing you the success you desire.

By Andrew Patricio

June 29, 2016