We’re in an era where many people want to start a business. It’s a great idea until they realize the time, effort, and money that goes into entrepreneurship. If everyone created a business plan and raised enough capital to keep their doors open for two to five years, the failure rate would decline.
One of the most overlooked parts of running a business is having a professional marketing team. Marketing is vital to the success of your business because people need to know it exists.
Marketing strategies are not for amateurs if you’re trying to take your business to the next level. In the digital era, the playing field is leveled. Mom and pop stores can compete with large companies with the right marketing strategy.
Do your research before handing your marketing over to someone with little to no experience. Professional Marketing has its benefits. Keep reading to learn ten differences between professional and amateur marketing.
1. Hitting the Mark with Professional Marketing
If you spend a lot of time on social media, you’ve seen numerous posts and advertisements from people claiming to have marketing experience. They make promises of helping you grow your following from ten to ten thousand in a matter of weeks.
As soon as you register, you get bombarded with opportunities to learn more about digital marketing for a small fee. Amateur marketers offer an eBook on marketing in exchange for joining their email list. Or they run ads hoping someone will take the bait.
Success isn’t gimmicks or hitting the mark once. It’s about building momentum and creating new opportunities. Each success becomes a stepping stone to the next great moment.
It’s essential to have a marketing plan that outlines multiple outcomes. A professional agency will create a path to ensuring you reach your target. They may also offer key performance indicators (KPIs).
On the flip side, an amateur marketer may see success as reaching one specific goal. There is no follow-up or initiative to go beyond the one thing they do well.
2. Goal Setters vs. Process Makers
Both amateur and professional marketing providers have the ultimate goal of making money. However, before their payday arrives, they should have goals outlined. These goals are specific to your company and have proven to succeed within the industry.
Before taking on the project, your marketing person should outline how they plan to get from point A to B.
Let’s use digital advertising as an example. The way to get your company’s information before the intended audience, marketing strategies will include some form of paid advertising. The advertising can take place on Google, social platforms, or email marketing.
Digital ads are typically cost per click (CPC) or pay per click (PPC).
Creating digital display ads is more than reaching a goal with a business marketing professional. The amateur marketer will set a goal of getting 100 people to interact with the ad. Once they reach 100 people, they’re done.
Professional marketers see the opportunity as a process. They will set a budget, create multiple ad versions, and monitor the analytical data. They are always looking for ways to improve and strengthen the strategy.
3. Processing Feedback
How a person processes feedback is always a good indicator of the type of service, they’ll provide. Expect the average amateur to only process positive feedback in a professional manner. If you provide a critique about their work, they become defensive.
With a company marketing your business, their agents see constructive criticism as a chance to improve on their techniques. These professionals take pride in what they do, and if the client isn’t happy, they haven’t succeeded.
Processing feedback where creativity meets technique is vital to business relationships.
4. Seeing the Bigger Picture
In professional marketing, you must see the bigger picture. A huge benefit of going with a marketing agency is having multiple people working on marketing strategies for your company.
An amateur is usually a one-man show. If things get difficult and they don’t see immediate results, they’ll be more apt to throw in the towel.
The professional marketer will see obstacles as a challenge to find new avenues to reach the target audience. They understand that no company is the same, and a cookie-cutter approach won’t always work.
By seeing the bigger picture, they have the opportunity to create new avenues to reach their target.
5. Building on Outcomes
Professional marketers come with extensive training and knowledge. They know the practices and principles required to get a business in front of their target audience. Plus, you can review their work and speak to satisfied customers.
Professionals invest in marketing tools that help measure the client’s return on investment. Going back to having a marketing plan, a professional marketing agency is laser-focused on outcomes. They are viewing every metric and analyzing every piece of data.
Professionals want the client to stay with their firm. They take the results of every outcome and look for ways to build on them in future projects.
Another trait of an amateur marketer is seeing an outcome as a success and wanting to repeat it over and over and over again. They don’t have the insights of knowing how to branch out and try new or multiple marketing strategies.
6. Knowing When to Throw-in the Towel
Failure is what often separates amateurs from professionals. It’s easy to throw in the towel when you only have a single strategy and your marketing plan doesn’t produce results.
Failures don’t mean an amateur can’t provide a successful marketing plan. Everyone starts somewhere. However, you don’t want to use your business as a test subject when trying to navigate a competitive market.
The amateur may know the basics. They may also have good concepts. The problem often occurs with their ability to implement the plan and strategize long-term.
A professional knows there are multiple ways to reach an objective. They believe in the motto: if you don’t succeed at first, try, try, and try again. A failure is rarely an option because they’ve already determined if the strategy is a good fit for the client before trying a marketing technique.
7. Short-term vs. Long-term
Amateur marketers have short-term goals. They cannot afford to spend too much time on one client. Their goal is to make money and gain experience in the process. Too often, managing multiple clients at once isn’t doable because there is no team supporting them.
Professional business marketing is long-term. Marketing agencies have the manpower and the talent to handle multiple accounts simultaneously. Their goal is to grow accounts that will use their services for all of their marketing needs.
8. Being Present in the Moment and After
If an amateur marketer is worried about paying the bills, they are not present in the moment. Distractions can lead to costly mistakes. It will ultimately impact their ability to gain new clients.
Professional marketing people understand they must stay in the moment before, during, and after the contract is signed. They show up every day with fresh ideas to please the client and present them to the world in exciting ways.
9. The Value of Teamwork
Professionals at a marketing agency value teamwork. These individuals understand they don’t always have the perfect plan for their clients. Having colleagues to bounce ideas off at critical moments is valuable.
Team members can see things objectively because they aren’t as close to the project. Whereas someone working solo with limited experience doesn’t have the benefit of extra eyes and ears.
The amateur is forced to figure things out alone and hope they make the right decision. Asking for input from others means accepting they aren’t as knowledgeable as they should be about company marketing.
10. It’s Business’s Time to Shine
Last but not least is moving your ego out of the way.
Amateurs and amateurs because they haven’t reached the pinnacle of their profession. They are still trying to prove themselves in an industry dominated by individuals with extensive marketing expertise. Therefore, the spotlight is on them and not the business being marketed.
The opposite is true of the professional. The agency’s ultimate goal is to spotlight the client’s business because they understand that when the client wins, their marketing agency wins.
The client’s successes get celebrated, and then it’s time to take their marketing to the next level.
Give Your Business the Level of Professionalism it Deserves
Understanding the signs between amateur and professional marketing can mean the difference between success and failure. Don’t place your future in the hands of someone who’s just starting. Please leave it to the pros and give your business the spotlight it deserves.
To find the right marketing agency do your research and interview a minimum of three agencies. Check references and read online reviews.
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