Avoid these 8 deadly marketing mistakes, says SCORE Counselor Elliot Shear. If you make them, “it’s a short and costly road to failure.” Shear also admits candidly that “I’ve made them all at least once.” They are:
1. Not identifying the “unique selling proposition” (benefits) for the product or service being offered. What makes it different from, and more desirable than, competitive offerings?
2. Not specifying numbers, specific names and demographics of potential buyers (both middlemen and end users) and their criteria for purchase.
3. Not facing the strength of competitors’ resources to combat the new product’s or service’s entry.
4. Not testing the product or service among potential buyers to validate performance and purchase intent.
5. Not putting a realistic probability on potential buyers’ purchase levels and purchase frequency.
6. Not developing specifications and costs for the product being offered.
7. Not assessing the avenues and costs for creating awareness of both middleman and end users (from packaging to web site reach to mass media advertising.)
8. Not doing a back-of-a-napkin assessment of profit and risk.
Elliot Shear has been around the marketing block a few times. He was a partner in an advertising /promotion/ marketing services agency, retained by clients such as AT&T, Kellogg’s, Quaker Oats, Binney and Smith, Brown & Forman and Ocean Spray. Prior to being in his own business, he held various executive marketing positions at Gillette, Alberto Culver and Swift & Company.
He’s now a volunteer counselor for SCORE Chicago, working out of the Barrington Office.
SCORE Chicago is a nonprofit organization of more than 100 volunteer business counselors who provide free, confidential business counseling and training workshops to entrepreneurs and small business owners. You can set up an appointment at one of our 15 locations by clicking this link. Check our website www.scorechicago.org for details on our workshops or resources on topics of interest. Call 312-353-7724 for further information.
What questions do you have for Elliot about these marketing mistakes? Ask them in a comment.