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classic marketing fails

Stephen Bradbury found himself cruising past the competition and winning gold for Australia at the 2002 Winter Olympics—some might say he was lucky. But the story of how he did it is really a story of how the others didn’t. It’s painful, exhausting, and a bit humiliating when you put in the time and money, but you don’t get the reward or even worse, the result. Unfortunately, we see firms doing this every day in the form of classic marketing fails.

So, wouldn’t it be great if you could make a Bradbury out of your sales and marketing on a consistent basis? There are definitely things you can do (and avoid doing) to increase your chances of getting lucky.

Here are classic marketing fails and how you can avoid them:


This means charging head-on without a plan or strategy in place—which, surprisingly, many businesses do. All to get the ball rolling. This may work when you want the front seat in the car. But, not narrowing down and understanding your market is a sure-fire way to waste your money and time. It’s a classic marketing fail!

In order to avoid this, it’s wise to think about how you’ll market your business. Is is best to market in terms of vertical, demographic, location, channel or service/product (in the case of B2B)? You’ll find that it’s easier to convince people to engage with you if they already know who you are. Or, if these are people who need the service you provide or have their wallet in their hand and are waiting for you to make contact.

The same applies when searching for a superstar team. You need to know exactly what to look for, which questions to ask, and the best way to extract information.

If you are unsure of who your market is and where they hang out, that’s where we come in. We take a bird’s-eye view and pick-up up on who and what you’ve missed. It’s easy to miss your golden opportunity when you’re immersed in both running your business and trying to market yourself.


Google and social media have changed the game significantly when it comes to finding and reaching your market. But, do you know the number 1 thing that Facebook wants you to provide? A positive user experience. The posts that get more engagement, get shown to more people and hold their place for longer. The posts that suck don’t get traffic directed their way and amount to a big waste of resources.

You can also create a look-a-like buyers list to mimic your previous customers. Then, take it one step further and find the equivalents of your repeat customers. What’s more, you can very precisely determine the parameters your net casts; location, postcode and behavioural targeting is a click away. Location-dependent businesses that aren’t targeting with hawk-eye precision are not even starting the race.


If you’re in a race not knowing your competition, you will end up like the pile of skaters that trampled over each other under pressure. It’s not so much about putting all your focus on them, it’s about being savvy. You want to know how your value proposition is going to be perceived by the market in comparison to your competitor’s alternative. This is especially true for B2B professional services, where the target market is generally smaller but they convert into longer-term customers, and in turn, the most valuable ROI for your marketing. Plus, knowing your competitors actually makes your business better. You can build strategic alliances, unite on industry challenges, be each other’s backups, or simply take their best ideas and improve on them.


Measuring your success is how you know you’ve succeeded. The succinct message of Peter Drucker, renowned business consultant, author and educator, “you can’t manage what you can’t measure”, ensures it’s everlasting wisdom in its obvious truth. But only 42% of businesses that are investing in social media marketing said they could measure the amount of traffic it generated (Social Media Examiner 2015). *facepalm*

Enlisting a Hunt & Hawk expert to be able to show you how and where exactly your marketing is working, means that you are not wasting your impressions on segments of the market that were never going to engage with you anyway. You aren’t letting leads drip through a leaky sales process. And you aren’t hoping the contractor you hired will deliver on the tasks you set without going back and forth 20 times. Making sure your marketing is strategically executed and measured means we can take it one step further and have you soar past your competition, and ultimately, avoid all of these fails.

It might be a long game, but it has a strong payoff. It is our mission (and pleasure) to make sure you get the most bang for your buck with your marketing approach. We won’t only help you plan and guide your strategy across various platforms, but also make sure you stay up-to-date with what is trending in your game. Keeping you strides ahead of the competition with an agile and dynamic approach. We can also be your virtual CMO with you every step of the way until the finish line—but in sales & marketing that finish is constantly moving… and so are we.

Hunt & Hawk can help you win that gold. Get in touch for a Growth Session today.