4 Questions to Help You Escape Marketing Overwhelm

Today we’re talking about how to escape from the dreaded problem of marketing overwhelm.

When you’re a business owner, especially a new business owner, you’re going to be overwhelmed with all of the information and advice out there about how you should be marketing your offerings – social media, radio ads, billboards, TV, Facebook, Twitter, Adwords, loyalty programs, marketing collateral, websites, conversion rates, copywriting, SEO, content marketing, word of mouth, direct mail, cold calling, referral programs, affiliate marketing, and the list goes on and on. It can all be pretty overwhelming.

So how the heck do you decide which marketing channels you should focus on and which you should set to the side so that you can escape from marketing overwhelm and actually get some effective marketing done? Well, it’s actually far simpler than you’d expect; all you have to do is ask yourself the following questions:

Firstly: Will this reach my ideal customer? If you don’t know who your ideal customer is, you’d better figure it out because your entire marketing strategy needs to be built around reaching that ideal customer. If you do know who your ideal customer is, then you know where he or she hangs out and what he or she is into. If a marketing channel isn’t going to reach your ideal customer, don’t waste any time exploring it.

Secondly: Is this consistent with my brand? Your brand is who you are as a business and how your potential customers see you. You don’t want to do anything that would mess up that image by pursuing a marketing avenue that is inconsistent with your brand. If you offer green cleaning supplies, getting branded labels on disposable plastic water bottles probably isn’t going to be too endearing to your customers.

Next: What ROI can I expect? Marketing is about bringing new customers in the door. It has to generate more revenue for your business than it costs or it isn’t worth the expense. Take a look at some of the data on any given marketing channel and try to estimate what ROI you can expect before you jump in so that you don’t waste time testing marketing channels that are just going to cost you money and not actually generate new business. If you’re going to pay for a Facebook ad, you don’t just want to know how many people will see it and how much you have to pay – you want to know what click through and conversion rates are typically like when people advertise similar products at similar price points to similar target audiences and then do a little analysis and compare that estimated customer acquisition cost to the estimated lifetime value of that customer.

Finally, ask yourself: Do I have the cash up front to utilize this channel? Maybe a TV advertisement during a certain show in your local area would be seen by a bunch of people in your target market, would be consistent with your branding, and should generate a high ROI – that’s awesome, but if you can’t afford the cost of that ad then it doesn’t make any sense for you to spend time planning around this particular marketing channel.

If you ask yourself these four questions and are honest with the answers, you should be able to quickly eliminate A LOT of the many marketing options so that you’re less overwhelmed and more able to do a more thorough analysis of the options that seem promising. That way you can get on track with actually developing and implementing successful marketing campaigns that will help you grow your business.


If you’re an aspiring entrepreneur, the best thing you can do for yourself is to just get started. Pick up my business planning ebook here to be guided through the whole business planning process for less than $5. More of a video person than a text person? Click here to try my ecourses instead.

3 Replies to “4 Questions to Help You Escape Marketing Overwhelm”

  1. I am starting to read your blog for advice. Marketing is a challenge for this new internet society which I live in now. I, day trade full-time now and find algorithms fascinating to understand. I am trying to market a lady friend of mine who has a talent for food presentation.

  2. I feel silly for not having realized how true what you pointed out here really is… I’ve always felt like I needed to utilize every marketing channel available because “everyone else is doing it”. But that’s not true at all. I can just use the most effective channels, and ignore everything else, and that’s okay.

    If I need to hammer a nail, I’m not going to use the screwdriver and pliers too just because they’re available – I’ll just use the hammer, because it’s the most effective tool for the job. 🙂

    1. Absolutely! It’s all about knowing what works for you, not doing every single thing there is just so you can say you’re doing everything you can do. The best thing for your business is to focus resources on those activities that provide the highest return.

Leave a Reply to Cate Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.