Do marketing tools get in the way or help?
The answer is yes…they can do both.
Tools are only as good as the people using them. In my search engine optimization (SEO) background you could have 3 people use the same keyword tool to find popular search terms. The results you got from the keyword tool were 95% dependent on the operator.
That makes it important to not only understand how to use the tool best, but also WHY the tool is being used.
In a popular super hero TV show I watch, The Arrow on CW, Oliver Queen is an arrow carrying vigilante. In several moments on the show he ends up teaching people how to fight and defend themselves – even other super heroes.
Without fail he always tells them that the secret is not in the weapons or technology, but in how you use them.
What are so common examples where marketing tools are misused?
SEO – Keyword search tools are a dime a dozen. Most of them do 1-2 things really well of the 5-6 things you need to be complete. So many marketers rely on 1-2 tools to do all the work for them and miss big opportunities
PPC – Paid advertising dashboards offer a lot of great leverage for looking at campaigns and outcomes. The problem with that is PPC managers spend less time on campaigns because of the short cut very often. They should be spending the same time as before, but be coming up with MORE insights due to the tools!
Content Promotion – finding a great partner to offer a content resource to that will give you links, traffic and promotion is the holy grail. The problem is a lot for content promoters use their tools to find targets, not build relationships. This makes the ones that do it right look like superstars though…
Email – newsletter and autoresponders are among the most abused tools in digital marketing. Much like paid ads the email platforms available should allow you to send much more targeted messaging that resonates with perfect potential clients. Instead it becomes and avenue to send more crummy, un-targeted emails. Blah!
Social Media – Most people don’t realize on a day to day basis that the power in social media is to get people in person or on the phone quicker by building relationships. Providing value and fun for your market should make them want to seek you out, not the opposite.
Another large issue outside the misuse of the tools we all love is the fact that we have a new one available almost every week! That requires us to understand WHY we need to tools. Only then can we make an intelligent decision about whether or not to add an new one, or replace a current one.
Audit Your Marketing Tools
A great exercise to get the wheels turning around your whole marketing system is to audit your current tool sets.
Does your team need an audit of the tools they are using and how they are using them? Are they getting you closer to your ROI goals?