What To Do When Marketing Efforts Fall Flat?

By Chris Keenan on September 21, 2017

You spent the time creating a marketing campaign, you spent hours getting everything right on Adwords or Bing, and now it seems like it did not work out.

What went wrong? Well, first off, don’t panic because many marketers deal with failed marketing plans on a regular basis, but is it fair to call it a failed marketing plan?

Perhaps, this was the first marketing plan you did for a client and it did not work out and customers weren’t engaged. Does that mean it was a failure or simply that you needed to gather more data to understand their needs? The way to look at it is that you did not have this wealth of analytics prior, so how could you make a marketing campaign that took into account your customer demographics without it? You probably couldn’t, so any marketing plan that falls flat is never a failure, it just needs to be re-worked with the data you have now.

Below are suggestions on how to turn a bad marketing effort into a successful one:

Look at the data from Google Analytics or other platforms

Google Ads has analytics and Google Analytics is made specifically for analytics, so why not make that your first step to a marketing revamp? Analytics are a treasure trove of information as to why digital marketing may not have gone as planned and are a way to revamp your marketing plan without scrapping it all together.

Perhaps you gave too much of an area to target without a big enough budget and simply the money ran out. The next step may be looking at what areas the most customers were looking for and making your targeting more concise. Or, maybe you had ads running 24/7 and your most valuable clicks only happened from 8 am to 4 pm. Your next step may be to decrease your ad schedule to conserve money to when you are getting the best results.

These are just simple examples, but the idea is that those analytics are key to understanding why a marketing campaign did not pan out and ways to fix it.

Revamp the marketing campaign

A marketing plan does not need to get thrown out immediately. Taking the steps above to look at analytics will be the first stop before a revamp. Now that you revamped ad schedules, targeting, etc. You may want to look at the ads and marketing tactics to see if they fit the geography, time of day, etc. that you are now targeting.

Having an ad that speaks about being a night owl when it is three in the afternoon or having an ad talk about a local Kansas City business when you are no longer targeting there will not serve you well. Google is on the lookout for quality content and if it no longer relates to what your revamp wants to look like then it is better to pause (not delete) until a later time.

A/B Test ads and other analytics

A great way to figure out what works and what doesn’t without creating a whole new campaign just yet is A/B testing. A/B testing basically means having two ads with almost all the same information except for one instance where it is different to see what people engage with more. A common pest control A/B test may be seeing if people engage with Free Inspection versus Same Day Service, but leaving the rest of the ad the same. Another example could be if you own a fashion company and seeing if Free Shipping entices people more than a 20% off coupon.

This will then show you what pieces of information you need to ensure are in your marketing material and then revamp the marketing campaign accordingly to what your customers in your industry engage with.

Assess and alter the marketing campaign again, if needed.

So, marketing campaigns are about trial and error and then some more trial and error after that. You may have to re-do your marketing campaign multiple times before it sticks, but that’s okay! Assess the analytics after each campaign ends, seeing what you can fix and what works, and then revamping the marketing campaign to fit the needs of the customers is the name of the game. You are here as a business because you want to serve them in some fashion so making the ads reflect them and want to engage with your business is the key to success.