We often get questions about this popular blog post, originally published in 2015. Here is a new take on marketing myopia for 2017!
What is marketing myopia? Simply put: it's tunnel vision. More specifically, it's what occurs when a business becomes complacent in its marketing efforts, and either focuses too much on the products they sell and not enough on the benefits it provides the user, or focuses far too much on one marketing channel and ignores others.
For a company looking to thrive and grow, as opposed to just keeping the doors open another day, this could be a big mistake.
Evaluating the Risks
Large corporations may be the most susceptible to marketing myopia. However, it’s the small businesses that are most at risk. Larger companies have a higher risk tolerance and can possibly take a hit, adapt to the market and recover. Small-to-medium businesses don’t have this luxury; for them, it’s crucial to foresee new trends, adapt to them, or collapse under the financial burden of miscalculation.
This overarching principle is especially true when applied to web marketing. Practices like search engine optimization, social media marketing and other traffic generation tactics are in a constant state of flux, and it’s up to businesses to adapt to these changes rather than reveling in short term success.
So what can companies do to stay on top of new trends and transformations in the market?
Tips to Avoid Marketing Myopia
Know Your Buyer Personas and Understand the Buyer's Journey
Your customers aren’t just the people who buy your products; they define your market. Pay close attention to their shopping habits and the way they research products. Do they extensively research a product online before making a purchase; do they ask for recommendations on Facebook or consult their friends and followers on other social media platforms? At what point are they ready to start a conversation with a sales person? Most businesses are surprised to learn that, in today's market, most people aren't ready to talk to a sales person until they are more than halfway through the buyer's journey: later in the consideration stage or even the decision stage.
Businesses should never cease to evolve and explore new options. Just because a tactic has worked wonderfully in the past doesn't mean you should assume it will work forever. The rate at which marketing is evolving is the rate at which your company's marketing tactics should evolve, as well. Consider all these influences on your marketing efforts:
Google algorithm changes
Changes in search trends, keyword popularity and competition
Introduction of new social media platforms
Changes to social media algorithms (particularly Facebook)
The number of email subscribers you have the possibilities for segmenting your lists
Evolution in the way people consume content online
Cost of paid reach on search engines and social media
The list truly goes on and on and ON.
Practice Self-Cannibalism (Metaphorically Speaking)
A company should never be afraid to compete with itself for more market share. A great example of this is an automobile company moving horizontally and producing electric vehicles. By doing so, they are stealing market share from themselves in one area but are also gaining it in new markets.
Listen to the Experts
There are entire websites, blogs and industry communities (from online forums to LinkedIn groups) devoted to tracking changes in the marketing world. Although it’s important not to rely too heavily on forecasted data, it is important to realize that professional marketers have taken time (time you don’t necessarily have) to research new trends and changes in marketing across many industries.
Don’t let market myopia prevent you from learning to adapt and change your marketing strategy for the better! Take a closer look at your marketing mix and make sure you aren't a marketing myopia victim by taking our self assessment. By answering our 15 questions, you'll be evaluated on how well you are performing in five key areas of web marketing and get customized recommendations on where you can make improvements.
Lindsey is the director of web strategy at Tribute Media and holds a B.A. in English and Communication with an emphasis in Journalism.
Outside of work, Lindsey participates in a "super-cool-not-at-all-nerdy" writing group. Her favorite writer is Dorothy Parker.