Marketing channel

Why Every Marketing Channel Won’t Work For Your Business

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I’m heavily involved in influencer marketing and recently wrote about why you need to take advantage of it and how to do it successfully. As a result, my agency has been inundated with inquiries from companies in a wide variety of industries. The companies that inquired all knew they wanted to do influencer marketing. . . they simply didn’t know how it worked, or even if it would work at all.


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Not all marketing channels will work for all businesses, and just because one business experiences a massive ROI doesn’t mean another business will experience a comparable return. Let me explain why.

Reason 1: You don’t have enough time to spend on management and optimization.

No online advertising option is truly “set and forget”. All require constant monitoring and optimization. Most big brands either have a large in-house online marketing team or hire a digital agency. Big brands want (and have the budget) to be visible across all channels – it’s part of their brand strategy.

Related: Ask the Expert: Does Your Business Really Need to Focus on SEO?

Small businesses with limited staff, or solopreneurs doing their own marketing, advertising simply doesn’t have the time to manage and optimize multiple channels. These companies need to identify one or two options that are likely to evolve. Often it makes sense to focus on Facebook ads and AdWords pay-per-click campaigns, as both offer virtually limitless scalability.

Reason 2: Not all audiences have the same intent.

There is a big difference between active seeking and impulsive actions. Facebook Ads can produce great ROI for some brands, but you need to understand how those ads are displayed. While Facebook offers great targeting options, users see your ads in their feed. They are not actively researching the product or service you are offering.

If your business sells consumer health products, for example, Facebook ads are a great way to introduce your offering to an audience that might be interested in what you’re selling. Even if they’re not actively looking for it, you can trigger impulse purchases with attention-grabbing ads.

Related: 4 Free Marketing Tools for Small Businesses

If your ad is engaging and smart, you might get a click or engagement — and if your offer is irresistible, you’ll see conversions. Now, a Google AdWords campaign allows you to place your ad directly in front of users who want your service or product. “AdWords allows us to target potential clients who are looking to speak to a local attorney immediately. With proper keyword selection and ad copy that offers a solution to their problem, we are able to generate leads that convert to a high rate,” says Todd Tinker, Founder of The Tinker Law Firm, PLLC.

Some marketing channels are just not relevant – if you are a B2B SaaS company then LinkedIn is an option, but advertising your consumer healthcare product would be a total waste of your budget.

Related: 10 Free Online Marketing Courses to Try Today (Infographic)

If someone is actively searching for a product or service, they’re more likely to open Google and type in their search query, hoping to find exactly what they’re looking for. “Pay-per-click ads give us the highest measurable return on investment. If someone searches for Liposuction, we can be at the top of the search results. This allows us to attract potential patients who are willing to come for a consultation,” said Dr. Ajaka, medical director of Cosmos Clinic.

Reason 3: Cost per acquisition can vary significantly from channel to channel.

What would you do if one of your marketing campaigns offered a cost per acquisition of $30 and another gave you the same results at a CPA of $2? Answer: Pause the $30 CPA campaign and allocate its budget to the campaign producing $2 acquisitions.

There are many ways to market your business online, but the key is to experiment and test the waters because not everything will deliver a CPA that makes financial sense. You have to be very attentive to your data and constantly optimize it. Equally important, you need to know when it’s time to ditch a channel and focus on more promising marketing opportunities.