Beware of expensive digital marketing tools

The digital marketing landscape is filled with companies providing of-the-shelf tools and software that promise to increase engagement, drive leads and make life easier.

 

A simple search for digital marketing will see you re-targeted with an abundance of ads for such things as social media management platforms, CRM systems, email marketing tools, web hosting offers and much more. They all promise for a one off, annual or monthly fee to revolutionize your marketing activity.

Buyer beware

Without doubt there are some stellar products, services and plans in the market. When used to their fullest ability, they can produce fantastic results. But small and medium size companies should exercise great caution when making a purchase for their marketing needs.

Take away the hype and sales patter. Ask yourself – are you really able to make the most out of all the features? Do you understand every selling point being made to you? By their very nature, these tools have some of the best marketing techniques surrounding their proposal to you. They rely on a lack of understanding to up-sell you a plan or tools you will either never use or rarely need.

What is omitted is the fact that, in many cases, basic or even free tools or service plans can easily be used to achieve the results that you want at that particular stage in your marketing development.

A workman and his tools

There is a classic saying: “It is not the tools we use that make us good, but rather how we employ them.” The success of many tools is based on the relevance of the data that you put into them and the actions you take out of them.

There are social media tools available that allow you to simultaneously update five different accounts automatically, multiple times through the day. All at the click of a button. This might seem like an efficient use if your time, but you’ll need to ask yourself a few questions. Do you have multiple active accounts? Do you have enough in your pipeline that needs you to schedule you adverts far in advance and multiple times a day? The £1,000+ you might need to pay for the software could potentially be better put to use.

There are email CRM platforms that can allow you to send campaigns to over 50,000 people each month. Do you have 50,000 contacts or a realistic opportunity of getting them? Gathering data of a sufficient quality and quantity is a mammoth project. Instead of spending your resources on a complex CRM system, why not spend more wisely on a simpler CRM system, and use the additional funds to purchase a comprehensive data list?

Optimism vs reality

It’s important to be optimistic when engaging in marketing activity, but you should also be realistic. No single tool can achieve miracles. Despite what you may be told, no single platform will help you become top-ranked on Google overnight.

At Divergent Path, we strongly believe that all marketeers should be completely honest with their clients when it comes to proposed marketing activity. We’ll never recommend you something you don’t realistically need. We take no commission if we purchase any tools or plans for your project, and we’ll always be honest if we feel one of your projects will not perform – even if it means you need to look elsewhere to make it happen.

 

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