Marketing ≠ Annoyance
There’s a reason we fast forward through commercial and click "Skip ad" as soon as we can — marketing efforts can be annoying. As a customer, you get it, but as a marketer, you want people to read your company blog, share your content and look at your company’s website.
To make sure your message is seen, you have to make sure it doesn’t annoy your audience. Here are four highly annoying marketing factors that will make potential customers hit the back button and move on to something else.
1. Annoying marketing isn’t helpful.
When someone seeks out information about your brand, they want information. They don’t want industry jargon or vague promises. Don’t just tell your potential customers what you’ll do for them. Instead tell them how you’ll do it. For example, if you want your customers to know you’ll make the auto insurance buying process easy, tell them that they’ll can purchase a policy online and print ID cards at home.
By providing helpful and informative content on your site, you’ll establish your brand as a consumer-friendly one.
Pro tip: If you’re using a blog for content marketing, make sure your content puts your audience’s needs first. Don’t worry about selling your product. Instead, think about what your potential customers need, and help them find it. When they decide they do need your product, they’ll be more likely to trust you to help them.
2. Annoying marketing is inconvenient.
Customers also don’t want to be required to call a representative or give you their phone number to get information. After all, if they wanted to speak to someone at your business, they’d have called you already.
Make sure your marketing materials provide all the information a customer could need to know if they’re interested in your product or service. If you'll need to get specific details from the customer before giving them additional information, like the price, make it easy for them to contact you in the way they want to. Consider having an online chat feature, and make it easy for someone to send you an email on the website.
Pro tip: Use any contact forms on your site to do some market research. Ask for as much information as you can without making it difficult to contact you. Then use the information you collect to get a better sense of who’s looking at your site and target your content to that audience.
3. Annoying marketing is intrusive.
Few things are more annoying than pop-ups. They block the content you’re trying to see and disrupt your browsing. And if you’re on a mobile device, it can be hard to close them. Don’t let pop-ups chase potential customers away from your site.
Use these web design features sparingly and with a clear purpose – like collecting email addresses or warning customers how long before a sale ends. If you think about what you want your pop-up to accomplish, you’ll be more likely to write successful copy. Focusing on purpose will also help you think about when you want a pop-up to appear. For example, if you’re building your email list, you should give users a few minutes to browse the site before prompting them for their email address since you want them to see what you have to offer. However, you don’t want to wait long enough that a pop-up will annoy them by interrupting their reading.
Pro tip: Do some A/B testing by trying changing the CTA but leaving everything else on the pop-up the same. You can see which CTA gets a better click-through rate, and then use the one that’s more successful.
4. Annoying marketing isn't believable.
Outrageous claims and over-the-top promises conjure up images of late night infomercials and pushy sales people, which probably isn’t what you want for your website. Don't try to convince customers you're product is the best with flowery language or unrealistic statements.
Instead, use customer reviews and testimonials to show potential customers that your product or service is exceptional. It's important to use real customer revies on your site, because fake ones can ruin your credibility and make it impossible to establish a good reputation. Include information the reviewer's name and location, as well as a link to their company website if you offer B2B service, to show readers the review came from a real person.
Pro tip: Customers trust reviews on third-party websites more than ones on your business' site. Encourage your customer to write reviews on Google, Yelp and ConsumerAffairs.