As a business owner, if someone asked you what marketing was all about, what would you say? Here are some of the most common marketing misconceptions that even you may have fallen victim to.
- “Marketing is an expense.” Marketing is viewed by a lot of people as being just an expense. Of all the marketing misconceptions, I put this one at the top of my list because viewing marketing as an expense can lead business owners to cut it out of the budget. Instead, it needs to be viewed as an investment that can bring good returns. Until recent years, it has been hard to quantify the return on investment that you gain from spending precious dollars on marketing. Fortunately, there are a lot more tools available now that allow for good metrics to be derived from marketing plans. The fact is, to maintain sustainable, profitable growth, a company large or small, needs to make a consistent investment in marketing in order to make long term gains.
- “Marketing is for the marketing department.” Ever work for a large company? I have. This common marketing misconception was never thoroughly communicated and I fell victim to it at one time early on in my career. “Why would I need to be involved with marketing when there is a department for that?,” I asked myself years ago. The fact is, marketing is important to everyone. Justin Burnash, co-owner of PrimeMR2 has always said to me, “Perception is reality.” Time and time again this proves to be true. You are marketing yourself daily and the success of your business will depend on how well you do it. If you are running a small business with several employees, make sure everyone knows the importance of marketing.
- “My marketing only needs to cater to current customers.” WRONG. This is a surefire way to limit growth and profitability in the long term. Although your current customers are important, you need to make sure you are not closing the door on any potential clients that do not know your service or product even exists yet.
- “We’re too small. We don’t need a marketing plan.” This one i took straight from Gianfagnamarketing. Jean Gianfagna describes it perfectly, “A marketing plan is the blueprint for how you present your organization to the market. IT outlines your target audience, messages, channels, tactics, offers, and budget. Without an integrated, cohesive plan, you could be confusing your prospects and wasting money. Every business – even a one-person business – needs to plan their marketing to get the best return on their marketing investment.”
- “Marketing is all about major sponsorship deals.” Just a few days ago, Stephen Curry signed on for a sponsorship deal with Under-Armour through the 2024 season. Big news and big deals like this have a lot of publicity and can really help a company’s profitability and stock price. However, marketing is not just about big sponsorship deals. It also includes tons of research, analysis, decision making and data driven strategies and plans.
- “Marketing is advertising.” While advertisements are certainly a part of marketing, this is only one small facet of what marketing really is. Reason that it is a common misconception? Advertisements are EVERYWHERE. You can’t go a day without seeing or hearing some form of advertisement. Some people pay to remove them and companies have made a large profit knowing this. Regardless, since we see advertisements so often, it comes to mind when we think of marketing.
Although this article is about the most common misconceptions of marketing, the only idea I want you, the reader, to walk away with, is that a thorough and well thought out marketing strategy is critical to the long term success of your business.
Interested in reading more? This article has more misconceptions about marketing, but I feel like this list also has the worst excuses for NOT having a marketing plan. Enjoy!
Anyone agree, disagree, or think of any additional marketing misconceptions? Comment below!