I want you to think about the marketing channels you employ as an ecosystem.
I know that sounds cliche.
That’s because it probably is, but trust me, it’s helpful.
As is the case with any ecosystem (probably, I’m a marketer not a scientist), a vast amount of parts interconnect and rely on one another to create a complex infrastructure. When everything is working together properly, you reach homeostasis. When there’s something missing or something isn’t working properly, you have a problem. Everything will just be out of whack and when one marketing channel isn’t performing properly, others will suffer, too.
You end up grasping at straws. Looking for quick fixes. The ever elusive “silver bullet”.
Other than a can of Coors Light, the silver bullet doesn’t exist. Trust me, I wish it did.
There’s no shortage of people who will sell you on solutions.
Email marketing, content marketing, social media marketing, inbound marketing, outbound marketing, influencer marketing, account based marketing, marketing automation, search engine marketing, search engine optimization, direct mail, conversational marketing, guerrilla marketing, geofencing, retargeting, Facebook ads, Twitter Ads, LinkedIn Ads, native ads, all the ads, all the marketing.
They offer straws for you to grasp at. They will pitch their solution as if it’s a silver bullet. They’re obviously trying to selling you something, and if you’re anything like me, you can’t help but occasionally wonder if this could be the thing that works for your business.
Maybe this one thing could be the straw you needed.
Maybe they’re selling copy writing for the perfect Facebook Ad, or an incredible email marketing tool that delivers incredible ROI. Some have a livechat integration for your website that’s guaranteed to turn you into conversational marketing experts. Others have the SEO experience or tool that’s going to boost your rankings to success. Sometimes you’re not even sure what they’re trying to sell you because it’s just so chock full of marketing speak and industry jargon, that you just assume it might be great.
I’ve got good news and bad news. The good news is it’s likely that most of these solutions could work. The bad news is that any number of these solutions could work. And any number of these channels should be working for you.
If this doesn’t seem ultra clear, that’s okay.
Most companies that sell marketing solutions are really good at marketing their solutions, because, well, they’re marketers.
As is the case with most businesses, becoming successful usually means finding one or two things you do really well and focusing on those. It’s no different for companies that sell marketing solutions. And they know you’ve got a budget, so they want to be a part of that budget. If that means pushing out another effective marketing channel in order to make room for themselves, you can bet the farm they’ll do it — even if that’s not in your best interest.
The reality is this: theres only one thing you need to be sold on and that’s a marketing strategy. And maybe “sold on” isn’t the right way to put it. The only thing you need to work on identifying is a marketing strategy. If that includes working with an agency partner, great. If you can figure it out internally, also great. The fact is that everything else is filling in the proper tools and channels.
Anyone who tries to sell you on one channel vs. another channel is a liar. They don’t care about growing your business, they care about selling their product.
I recently read an ad for SMS Text marketing. They used cherry picked metrics to “show” how much more effective text marketing was compared to email. And sure, a 98% open rate seems more effective than 22% for email (those were the exact metrics they used). But how many of those texts turned into a purchase? What were they even selling? Would it work for MY business? Those are some of the many questions you should be asking.
Shouldn’t you be doing both if both would work for your business? Of course. Would both work for your business? I don’t know — and neither does the vendor selling you on text marketing. If you can’t answer that question yourself, you should employ someone to help you figure that out — someone who isn’t selling you a product, but a strategy. Then make sure everything is working together — cohesively. This is homeostasis for your marketing ecosystem.