If you invested money into creating an exceptional advertising campaign and pushing it out into the world, you want your campaign to be successful. In fact, you hope that your income from the campaign is much higher than the investment you made.
Yet spending money on a fancy ad agency and having a large bank roll to fund ad placements doesn’t guarantee success. Many business owners put all of their thought and effort into getting the message out, and then they forget about the essentials of what makes people want to do business with their company.
No matter what type of advertising campaign you run, the most important part is to provide exceptional service for your leads. These are some of the major mistakes that we see business owners make that cause great advertising campaigns to turn little or no profit.
Mistake #1: Not Answering The Phone
It’s sad that we even have to mention this one, but it’s extremely common. If you’re running ads and you’ve set the call to action as calling your business, you must have someone there to answer the phones.
Similarly, don’t run ads outside of your business hours if you’re encouraging a call. This is a very common mistake we see in PPC ad campaigns. Instead of setting the hours to run the ad, the business owner lets it run all day and night. A potential customer calls, only to get your voicemail. Guess what? They won’t call back. You’ve just paid for that call, and the person on the other end was ready to buy, but because your phones were unmanned, their money went to your competitor instead.
Want proof? About 85% of people who make an unanswered call to a business will not call back. Letting your phone ring too many times without picking up, or not having anyone available to take calls, could result in you losing 85% of the business you paid for. Losing that much potential business is a hallmark of unsuccessful advertising campaigns.
Mistake #2: Bad Customer Service
Maybe you read the above mistake and thought to yourself, “Ha! At least I don’t do that! I always have someone answering the phones. It’s either Tracey or Bob, who covers for her during her lunch hour.”
The problem is that Bob is cranky. He has some skills you find valuable at your company, but Bob couldn’t sell a bottle of ice-cold water in the middle of summer. He has no idea how to follow up, he can’t identify when someone is a hot lead, and he really doesn’t care if you get new customers or not. It’s all the same to him.
This can be more detrimental to your business than you think. Over half of Americans have decided not to make a purchase after a bad customer service experience. That means letting Bob answer your phones could be costing you 50% of your business, resulting in extremely unsuccessful advertising campaigns.
If you’re running ads to get more calls to your business, you should have your best people answering the line. They should be trained to answer the phone professionally. Their voice should be welcoming and friendly. They shouldn’t sound annoyed because the phone rang or because they were interrupted by it. They should know how to close callers, how to upsell, and when to offer discounts. The people who answers your phone should be an extension of your sales force, not just the employee who’s available to take it.
People who have a bad experience on their first phone call with your business will assume their entire experience will be the same. Nothing kills an ad campaign that’s otherwise perfect like having bad customer service.
Mistake #3: Asking Potential Customers To Do Your Work
If you provide a service for your customers, you probably need information from them. You might need their name and phone number, their address, or other details to give them a quote. On the call, when the customer is giving you their information, you should write this information down for them.
Don’t make them do your work. When they come in to your store or are ready to contract your services, they shouldn’t have to repeat this process. They also shouldn’t have to give their info over the phone, then have to fill out a form with the same information you just asked.
People don’t like having to repeat themselves. People don’t like to fill out forms. That’s why removing even one form field from a sign-up form can boost conversions by 26%. Don’t we all dread the new patient experience where we have to show up to our doctor’s office 20 minutes early just to write our name, address, phone number, and emergency contact on five different forms?
A frustrated customer is not a customer who will willingly part with their cash. Don’t pass the workload onto them. Your clients should never have to go out of their way to do business with you.
Mistake #4: Not Following Up
Let’s say that you’re running an advertising campaign and you get a call from someone who’s interested in your services. You’ve hired a professional to answer the phones and close the sale. Yet this person just wants to learn more and isn’t ready to buy yet.
Now, the onus is on you to follow up. It’s horribly wasteful to let these warm leads sizzle out because you weren’t using an effective CRM platform like SalesForce or Zoho or another system you’ve put into place. Oftentimes, these prospects just need a quick followup or two to push them over the edge. But they’ll never buy if you don’t follow up. They’ll forget and move on with their lives.
Another major problem you could be making that could lead to unsuccessful advertising campaigns is if you don’t follow up in a timely manner. Statistics prove that the early bird gets the worm. For example, if someone completed a request quote form on your website, they probably did the same on your competitors’ sites, too. 50% of buyers choose the business that called back first. That means if you’re waiting a day or two to get back to leads, you’re losing at least half of them to your fast-acting competition.
Mistake #5: Unorganized or Nonexistent Sales Strategy
If you’re dealing with a professional advertising agency who has set you up for success, you can’t neglect your end of the pipeline. You could have qualified leads rolling in all day and night, but if you haven’t put a sales strategy into place to nurture and convert these leads, all your money will be wasted.
What should your sales team do if the lead says they’ll think about it? What follow-up protocol do you have in place if someone doesn’t answer their phone? What deals should they offer customers and what upsells should they push? Is there a written script that they can follow that you’ve tested and is proven to work?
Even the best advertising campaign requires a sales strategy on your part. There should be an established sales pipeline in place. Sales agents should know what the next steps are for the customer to take. They should know the process like the back of their hands so they don’t show signs of insecurity or confusion while talking to prospects. They should also be able to qualify prospects and identify who deserves their time and who is just a waste of time for your bottom line.
This is especially important if you’re getting overloaded with leads. Don’t let these go to waste. They could feed your business for months or even years to come. Have a system in place that ensures everyone gets contacted quickly. At any moment in time, you should be able to look at the leads coming in and know where each person is in the sales process. Be prepared and stay organized to maximize your ROI and avoid running unsuccessful ad campaigns.
If setting up a sales strategy is something you need help with, get in touch with us for a free consultation. We don’t only run successful ad campaigns. We also make sure that businesses are prepared for the calls that come in and understand how to convert prospects. That’s why we offer answering services and sales consulting. Your ROI is our priority.
Mistake #6: Not Testing Your Funnel
Let’s say you’re running ads to a landing page on your website that prompts the site visitor to fill out a form to request more information or to get a custom quote. Or maybe you’re offering them a free ebook in exchange for their name and email address. Though these systems sound simple enough, the multi-step process can be more complicated than you think.
You must test your funnel from a number of devices to make sure everything works the way it’s supposed to. After someone fills out your form, do they get an automatic email response? Does the landing page display a thank you message? Is their information properly inputted into your email responder and CRM software? Are emails scheduled to follow up with them in the coming days? If they respond to an email, does it go to the working inbox of your sales team?
How about the buttons on your website? Do they submit the information they’re supposed to? Are they clear and easy to read? Is anything on your website distracting visitors from filling out the form they’re supposed to? Does your page load quickly enough so site visitors don’t click away?
Usually, testing it yourself isn’t enough. You could miss a crucial element, causing you to run unsuccessful ad campaigns. You should ask people on your team to go through the process to ensure that everything works without a hitch. The last thing you want is to send people to your website and not be able to capture their information. This leads to a frustrating experience for them and a negative ROI for you.
Mistake #7: Not Being Equipped For More Customers
Another error we see many businesses making is that they want to make more money, but they aren’t actually able to take more customers. If your service providers are already stretched to the brink and your employees can’t handle their existing workload, why would they be able to take on more customers? They won’t. Not only that, but spreading their attention over so many people will only detract from the overall customer experience. This ensures that your business will be positioned as a subpar solution to your customers’ needs. And unhappy customers will look elsewhere.
If you are truly ready to welcome all the new business you could get from a successful advertising campaign, you must put the proper foundation in place. Make new hires and have them trained before the leads start coming in. Maybe you need to promote people, or extend your employees’ hours, or make another shift. Whatever it is, be sure you identify what needs to be changed before your ads start.
Otherwise, you’ll be banging your head against the wall because you wasted a ton of money, time, and income because you couldn’t serve your customers properly. No one wants to wait three months to be served. Being prepared for a barrage of new customers will ensure that you’ll be able to retain them.
At AMJ Sales and Marketing, we want to make sure that you don’t make these costly mistakes that other businesses make. That’s why we can handle both the marketing and sales side of your business. Get in touch with us today for a free consultation with one of our sales and marketing experts.