Consumers are spending more time online, visiting more platforms than ever before. Therefore, digital marketing is an important way to spread brand awareness and convert potential customers.
But with so many evolving trends in digital marketing, keeping up and mastering best practices isn’t always easy. Below, a panel of Young Entrepreneur Council members discusses some of the common hurdles entrepreneurs face when dealing with digital marketing and offer their advice on overcoming them.
13 Major Problems Entrepreneurs Face in Digital Marketing
- Determining which channels will bring top ROI.
- Neglecting product-market fit.
- Understanding their personal brand.
- Letting their efforts plateau.
- Researching proper practices.
- Distributing content.
- Deciding on an efficient strategy.
- Creating consistent content.
- Not knowing what works.
- Trying to be everywhere at once.
- Creating optimized landing pages.
- Educating their audiences.
- Balancing their reputations.
1. Determining Which Channels Will Bring Top ROI
I believe the biggest obstacle entrepreneurs face in digital marketing is figuring out which marketing channels will bring the most ROI. Testing is the only way to figure this out. For tests to be successful, however, you need to involve experts. Finding truly competent people is just as much of a challenge. — Maksym Babych, SpdLoad
2. Neglecting Product-Market Fit
The biggest problem is putting digital marketing before product-market fit. Entrepreneurs should first spend more time with early users and clients to understand what they want, then build their digital marketing strategy around the desries of those audiences. This planning will ease any SEO or SEM strategy, both of which need a sharply defined prospect. And this process saves loads of money. — Ron Lieback, ContentMender
3. Understanding Their Personal Brand
When it comes to digital marketing, you need to understand that you, as a business leader, are also a brand. What you post, the things you engage with, and the content you like all matters. One of the best ways to market your business on social and digital media platforms is through your personal profile. Aligning your messaging and content with your business goals is extremely important. — Nic DeAngelo, Saint Investment Group
4. Letting Their Efforts Plateau
Stopping your efforts after hitting a plateau is the digital marketing downfall of many entrepreneurs. Keep building even if you’ve hit what seems to be a limit. Digital marketing is a slippery, precarious place. Secure your foothold in the rankings once you have it. Don’t assume that nobody else wants your spot and that you’re safe forever. — Tyler Bray, TK Trailer Parts
5. Researching Proper Practices
A big hurdle to overcome for entrepreneurs who venture into digital marketing is research. They mistake playing around with marketing tools for actual marketing. Having a blog isn’t the same as writing SEO-optimized content that aligns with the buyer’s journey. A landing page isn’t enough if you don't know the nuances of generating traffic. You have a lot of studying to do. Roll up your sleeves and get to work. — Samuel Thimothy, OneIMS
6. Distributing Content
Content distribution is a huge hurdle for most entrepreneurs. To overcome it, have a system to automatically distribute content to two to three channels after publishing. Find the best channels for your content by testing a couple for a few weeks to see where your audience responds. When you get traction with a channel, invest more in developing it. Then, repeat the testing with new channels. — Monica Snyder, Birdsong
7. Deciding on an Efficient Strategy
One of the biggest problems for entrepreneurs when it comes to digital marketing is finding the time and means to cover all areas like content marketing, social media, on-page and off-page SEO, building an email list and more. Decide on a digital marketing strategy you can manage and consistently focus on instead of spreading yourself too thin. — Benjamin Rojas, All in One SEO
8. Creating Consistent Content
I’m not just referring here to content we have to make on a consistent basis, but to the message of the content we make. Yes, there should be consistency in posting, but the aesthetic, message and agenda of the content should be one and the same. Sometimes this can change, depending on the target market, but keep a common theme. — Daisy Jing, Banish
9. Not Knowing What Works
The biggest hurdle entrepreneurs face with digital marketing is not knowing what works. Many entrepreneurs either don’t implement any strategy and miss out on new business, or they spend a ton of money on resources that don’t work. Identifying which 20 percent of your efforts yield 80 percent of the results is the most undervalued advice most entrepreneurs overlook. — Libby Rothschild, Dietitian Boss
10. Trying to Be Everywhere at Once
Being everywhere at once is a big mistake I see entrepreneurs make when starting a digital marketing campaign. They will be on every social media channel, get involved in blogging and SEO, start list-building and email marketing and strive to get a series of inbound links. When this happens, efforts get diluted, leading to no real results. My recommendation is to start where your audience is. — Kristin Kimberly Marquet, Marquet Media, LLC
11. Creating Optimized Landing Pages
Many entrepreneurs struggle to create optimized landing pages for their campaigns that effectively increase conversions. Landing pages are used to promote products, services, resources, events and more. They go in depth about your offer and encourage visitors to take action. Many new entrepreneurs find themselves hiring marketers to create their landing pages because it’s so difficult. — Jared Atchison, WPForms
12. Educating Their Audiences
I think many entrepreneurs struggle with educating their audience. Saying, “This is my product; please buy it” isn’t enough. Instead, you have to educate potential customers and show them how your product or service will improve their lives. You can overcome this barrier by writing high-value blog posts and spending time engaging with your audience on social media. — John Turner, SeedProd LLC
13. Balancing Their Reputations
Entrepreneurs need to find a balance between staying off hot social and political topics and developing a negative reputation by saying nothing at all. The key is to maintain the same professional and appropriate content across your accounts online, whether it’s your own social media or your company’s. Make it a policy to stick to positive and appropriate content. — Syed Balkhi, WPBeginner