No one embarks on a project with the intention of failing, but through the years, we have identified certain warning signs and red flags that indicate when a project is at risk. In this article, we outline these factors to help clients understand what must be done to best mitigate the risk of failure.
Roughly 4% of projects fail to enter the launch beta phase. Below, we examine the reasons projects can falter beforehand.
Comprehending the scope:
Digital marketing projects are governed by a project scope, which details the work to be done. If it is not in the scope, it is not included. While minor additions may not pose a significant issue, it is crucial to fully understand the scope of the contract you are entering.
Collaboration is key:
No one knows your business better than you. Take the time to engage with our team, contribute and annotate specific imagery you want utilised via Dropbox, and inform us about particular project photos you want highlighted. It is especially important to review development links before a website goes live. The sooner we receive your feedback, the quicker we can make changes; if we are chasing you for weeks for feedback, the project is more likely to fail.
Image selection is a matter of opinion, not fact:
If you collaborate with multiple brand suppliers, you may have hundreds of images that can populate your site. While we typically get this right, please remember that we may not know which images you prefer or dislike. We can arrange a meeting to review imagery, allowing you to ‘favourite’ or delete images to ensure we adhere to your aesthetic preferences.
Maintain access to your digital property account passwords:
Whether it is your DNS account, Google Ads, Google Business Profile, or Facebook Business Manager, these properties are vital to your business. Endeavour to be well-organised and secure with your login credentials. We recommend LastPass for this purpose. If you cannot access your account and need to recover it, it is your responsibility to rectify the situation. We will advise you on how to do so if possible, but as time-consuming and frustrating as it may be, you must address this for us to post to your social channels, run paid ads, etc.
Post Launch performance issues:
Developing rankings in Google is similar to taking a lift to the top floor of a towering building. For established businesses with numerous reviews and a long-term digital presence, we will reach our destination more quickly than start-ups or businesses with minimal digital presence. In the former, we might be entering the lift on the twentieth floor, whereas in the latter, we are starting from the ground floor.
‘Proximity’ is a significant ranking factor in Google’s local search algorithm, referring to the distance between you and the searcher. If you are outside of a town or city you wish to sell in, it becomes more challenging to rank well compared to competitors based in the town or city itself.
Geography also matters if you are in a town or city that may not have the affluence to support many high-end kitchen or bathroom purchases. In this situation, you will need to target a broader geographical area, likely involving paid advertisements.
Performance is generally better for businesses selling modern fittings than traditional and handmade products, reflecting the broader UK market preference. If you only offer traditional products, you are fishing in a less well-stocked pond, but that does not mean some of the fish cannot be substantial! Numerous companies offer handmade/bespoke products, resulting in higher Costs Per Acquisition but also higher Average Order Values.
Reputation and social proof are essential:
Websites for businesses with numerous Google reviews and installation photography not only rank better but also convert more visitors into leads. Consider your review and photography bank as valuable assets that should be curated and invested in, much like a showroom display – they are likely worth even more to you.
Understanding and being realistic about your Return On Investment (ROI):
For instance, if a client spends £6,300 a year with us and the same amount on paid ads we manage on their behalf, they could break even on this investment with the sale of just two kitchens in a year. One sale per quarter would result in a £2:£1 ROI (which aligns with Google’s estimated average advertiser return). Although we aim to significantly exceed this for you, it is vital to understand the numbers. We have developed a tool here to assist you in doing so: Lead Wolf ROI Calculator
When we recommend that a client invests in paid ads, it is based on a sincere belief that it is in their best interest. Lead Wolf does not receive any financial incentive from Google or Meta. Contrarily, a larger budget often means more work for us. We make these recommendations to help you generate more leads and achieve a favourable ROI. If you do not invest enough, you may not see the desired returns, or it may take considerably longer. Expecting 20 leads per month, especially for start-ups or those in suboptimal geographical locations without paid ads, is simply not realistic in the early months.
Multi-channel challenges from an SEO perspective:
Multi-channel strategies can be more challenging from an SEO perspective because you can only have one primary business category. Most NAP citation backlinks will only allow a link to the homepage of a website; so it is more difficult to rank three services pages than a single service page that can go on the homepage.
We have seen clients experience profile or account suspensions from Google or Facebook, sometimes due to suspected fraud on a payment card, which took a long time to resolve, or occasionally for suspected fake reviews. If a profile is suspended, we understand that it can be extremely frustrating, but there is little we can do other than appeal it.
With time, cooperation, and investment, overcoming these challenges is almost always possible. Establishing open lines of communication, setting realistic expectations, and committing to a collaborative approach are essential in ensuring the success of a digital marketing project. By investing in a well-rounded strategy, embracing feedback, and working closely with marketing professionals, businesses can conquer obstacles and achieve their desired outcomes. Patience and persistence, coupled with a willingness to adapt and learn, are key drivers in navigating the complex digital landscape and ultimately delivering a successful, results-driven marketing campaign.