Author: Henrico Hanekom – Neuro-Marketing Mentor – © 2017

Marketing is the key to unlock entrepreneurship and growth in business. Perhaps you have invested in marketing campaigns but still don’t get the desired results, even over a longer period of time?

Consider these six unexpected reasons why your marketing may not be sustainable or may not be working at all:

  1. Not truly identifying with your target audience

If you can’t put yourself in your ideal client’s shoes you will probably miss the mark and suffer poor engagement with your target audience. To really identify with your target audience you must see the world from their perspective. Can you answer these questions about the individual you’re targeting?

  • Where will you find your target audience? Which communication channels do they prefer?
  • What type of language and style do they respond to? Which buzz words arouses their attention?
  • What are their concerns, challenges and aspirations? Why do existing clients buy from you?
  • What will your target individual gossip about around the fire at a braai?
  • Who do they report to? What is their mandate? What is in it for them when you do business?

Intimate knowledge of your target audience affords you valuable clues to help develop high impact marketing material.

Practical tip: Ask the above questions in order to envision a clear avatar of your ideal client. Now measure all future communications against it to determine relevance.

  1. Misalignment with company culture

One can never not communicate. Every person in your organisation forms part of your marketing or communication campaigns, weather you like it or not. This applies to everyone from the driver to the receptionist to the operations manager to the sales staff. All of them paint a part of the picture…your picture.

It often happens, when everyone is not well aligned with company culture, that what is observed of the brand is a skewed picture of the company’s real vision and policy. The picture can be wrong or simply fragmented. Effective and sustainable marketing happens when everyone in the whole organisation speaks with one voice.

Practical tip

Talk to your staff, not just about WHAT they’re doing at work, but WHY they’re doing it.

  1. Non-adaptable to change in the communication and marketing landscape

Today’s information age makes communication very noisy. Billboards, emails, social media, instant messages and information thrown our way, result in—as Neuro-scientists call it—‘’cognitive overload”. Interestingly, people resort to visual communication to be able to process more info more quickly. Social media and Youtube’s statistics tell us that more and more people are utilising video in their communication and consumers love viewing this medium.

This makes video marketing a powerful tool, because it combines audio, visual and kinaesthetic elements into an influential message. It’s a proven fact that visual content results in seven times more engagement and even higher memory retention. Without visual communication, you are probably just part of the noise.

Practical tip

Ask yourself which parts of you communication or marketing can be produced in video format.


  1. Lack of personal motivation

No marketing or communication campaign will be successful if the people behind it aren’t truly motivated and purposefully aligned to what they are doing. Each person’s level of motivation in your marketing team, albeit in-house or outsourced, will impact the outcome.

Individuals must:

  • Find a sense of purpose in what they do
  • Buy into the bigger vision of what their organisation wants to achieve

This will result in them being more successful in closing deals and in attracting the right kind of clients even when the going gets tough.

Make sure they realise that true inner motivation that helps one be resilient towards challenges comes from a sense of purpose. Realise that even the smallest task or biggest challenge is part of living a dream and your biggest picture. You’re serving some kind of purpose to make a difference.

Practical tip:

Use my article called Why SMART goals will give you DUMB results’ to shed light on purposeful living and goal setting.

  1. One size does not fit all

Many marketing companies, ad-agencies and PR companies use adaptations of the same methods for all their clients. This doesn’t always bring desired results. As a result some companies may think:

  • “my company is un-marketable”
  • “these external service providers don’t really understand our message or our audience”

This seems to be especially true for B2B (Business to Business) clients that offer a product or service in a niche market. In these circumstance the typical consumer/end-user approach (B2C) to marketing simply isn’t applicable. The answer is simply to use highly customised approaches.

Bottom line – one size does not fit all!

Practical tip

If your company falls into this category, I believe Neuro-Coaching, mentorship and consultation can help you reach an innovative and tailored solution. This must be customised to:

  • What you want to achieve
  • What you want to say
  • Your specific target audience

This can all be done while staying aligned with your unique company culture.

  1. Using irrelevant channels

Marketing & Communication channels include the following:

  • Phone
  • Outdoor
  • Print
  • Email
  • Website
  • Social Media
  • LinkedIn and more

I may be a firm believer in staying up to date with the latest in digital trends. However, this doesn’t mean Marketing Managers should base their marketing channel decisions on the latest trends and innovations. Unfortunately many make this mistake.

Here’s an example:

Imagine your target individuals are senior farmers. Most of these farmers don’t use social media or online tools so a digital strategy won’t even reach them. After some research we found out the best marketing channel to reach them was during auctions where they congregate to sell game.

Trendy? No.

Simple, efficient and accurate? Yes.

Practical tip

Discover where you can find more of your ideal customers. Where will you typically find them as a group? Clarify which communication channels they prefer and focus on those channels.

Much of this boils down to quality vs. quantity. Throwing more money at your current marketing or communication activities, hoping you’ll see a return on investment may not be your best option. Rather guide people to speak clearly with one voice. This creates perpetual growth in your company and unlocks true, successful entrepreneurship via effective marketing & communication!

Author: Henrico Hanekom – Neuro-Marketing Mentor – © 2017

Henrico Hanekom is a Neuro-Marketer who empowers leaders in business to better influence their target audience so that they can reach more people with their message and generate more revenue.

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