Have you ever felt like you have been burnt by a marketing agency or so-called marketing expert? Or perhaps you tried your hand at digital ads yourself and felt like it didn’t work? If you answered yes to any of this, there’s a good chance that you haven’t been burnt and digital ads do work, you just haven’t spent enough money!

Stick with me here…

90% of the brand owners I speak to that think similar thoughts, have not allowed for the right marketing budget and afforded the time to see it work for them. I never truly understand why it is so common when launching a business, we set aside the budgets to produce the product and build the website, yet we don’t set aside a kitty for marketing the brand. Instead, we want to throw the minimal funds we have left at a marketing channel and expect business will immediately begin a journey of returning a profit. Or worse still, we don’t put any money into marketing and expect the magic profit fairy will wave a wand across the business. If I had a dollar for every time I heard or read the complaint that their business has launched but they aren’t getting any visitors to the website, I would be doing very well…people, how do you think consumers find your website if they don’t know you exist??!!

This brings me to the point I am trying to get across – consumers need to know you exist. This is called in marketing terms, brand awareness. By creating brand awareness, you’re in turn growing brand equity. In theory, the more brand equity you have, the less it should cost to convert consumers to customers.

So how do you get people to know you exist? You must spend money – sorry there are no shortcuts here. If we assume that you know your target audience and that you have selected the right channels to meet them, then you should be applying a budget to reach your audience and make them aware of you. The largest percentage of these people you reach, won’t do much when they encounter your brand. Some may engage by visiting your website and having a look around or perhaps they will join your mailing list or your socials. But a very small percentage will convert at this point.

It is this information that is critical to understanding why there will be a period in the early stages of your business, where marketing investments will largely be about building your brand equity and not driving the volume of sales you need to start to see profits. This is also why you should be budgeting for brand awareness activities before you launch along with other start-up costs. You can even spend money seeding your brand strategically before you launch (more of that on another day).

Over time and as your brand awareness grows, you should see more and more of those people you reach move through what we call the marketing funnel, to conversion. When the tap is fully flowing, the returns of the ads spend (ROAS) start to improve and that initial investment starts to pay off.

So, you see now, investment in time and money, is a critical step in the pathway to a profitable business and seeing your marketing work for you. Looking at your marketing investments through a longer lens and taking the pressure of needing to return immediately, will be key to the success and longevity of your business.

If you would like to discuss what this might mean for your business, you can book a complimentary 20 consult with one of our strategists.