Lessons from a marketing strategy gone wrong (mine!)

The theme for the blog this week is “strategy” and the first thing I needed to do is turn the microscope on myself.
It’s ugly. I have not been following my own rules … but let’s see what you might learn from my mistakes.
Something I have preached relentlessly: When you start a social media strategy, it needs to be integrated into your overall business objectives … which hopefully are aligned with customer wants and needs. Remember, social marketing is still MARKETING. Same fundamental rules apply.
My traditional core business is providing low-cost marketing services to businesses in the Southeast U.S. When I started this blog a few months ago, I had that objective and those customers firmly in mind. But then it all went wrong.
Here’s what’s happened:
  1. Over time I have been writing less about small business marketing fundamentals, and more about B2B and social media. It’s what’s interesting to me right now, so I went with it!
  2. The people who read my blog and follow my tweets now come from all over the world — relatively few from my core market.
  3. Based on my social media presence, including the blog, Twitter, and my web page, I am getting new customers from California, Switzerland and Australia — not what I originally had in mind.

In a matter of weeks, my core business competency and customer base changed dramatically, because my message and audience changed dramatically. Isn’t that interesting? I wasn’t consistent and now I’m challenged to match my STRATEGY to my inconsistent MESSAGE!!

How did this happen? I lost sight of my core mission because writing the blog became so much fun. I wasn’t “marketing.” I was being me. And it worked out fine. I didn’t choose my audience. My audience chose me.

What did I learn? Perhaps in social media, “being me” IS the strategy.

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