Potential clients often call me and ask, “How long do I need to run my marketing campaign? Can I do a campaign for six months and stop?”

My reply is always simple: Do you want to stop selling your product or service? Of course not. This means you have to continuously market. You want to continuously make sales – so why would you ever stop marketing?

It’s important to remember that top-of-mind awareness is a real thing. If your product or service is in front of a potential customer and is solving a problem for them or bringing them pleasure, they will definitely buy.

I’m actually the perfect example of this phenomenon. I’m a super busy mom as well as a business owner, so I don’t have much free time to shop. Instead, I tend to look at my Instagram feed and, if I see something cute, I swipe and buy (especially if they target me with ads and I see the item over and over.) This method is simple and easy to use, and with one click, I’m on my way to a new outfit – especially if the website has my credit card info saved. Think about it: If I hadn’t seen that ad on Instagram, I would have never made the purchase.

Car dealers are another great example. Do you ever wonder why they never stop advertising? Because it works! I’m sure we can all think of two or three car dealers in our city that are constantly running advertisements. If they weren’t getting a return, they wouldn’t advertise.

I know in my local market, car dealers are spending up to $100,000 a month on ads. This is because if they stop, they risk losing market share, and no longer have top-of-mind awareness in the market. Instead, their competitors are advertising and they start to become top of mind.

You should think of marketing like you would paying your mortgage or your utility bills. You can’t not do it. It’s a monthly budget just like turning the lights on in your workspace. You can’t live without it!

A question I get asked all of the time is, “Once I get to the top of Google, can I stop doing search engine optimization?”

The answer is no! SEO is a long-term play and Google should be your number one referral! If you come to the top of Google for key terms in your industry, you win. You will definitely get calls from potential customers because 85% of people search Google before they make a purchase.

When you get to the top of Google but stop developing your SEO, you’ll drop. It won’t happen overnight, but just like it takes time to get to the top, you’ll gradually start dropping until your competitors pass you by. For these reasons, SEO has to be something you continuously work at – trust me, it’s worth it.

My biggest referral for D2 Branding is Google. Referrals from Google are actually my favorite leads that come in because they’ve already determined ahead of time that they have a need that we can fill.

Think of outbound marketing, like Facebook ads. You can deliver your ad to a highly targeted audience, but you don’t know if they actually need your product or service right now – you’re just hoping they click. But with Google search, you already know they want what you have. They just may not know about you yet.

If SEO is not in your marketing plan, it absolutely should be, because Google isn’t going anywhere. SEO is not an overnight fix – it’s a marathon, not a sprint. It can often take months to get to the top of Google for key terms in your industry, but once you start to land at the top, you’ll get tons of calls from potential clients. Research actually says that 62% of buyers would rather consult a search engine to learn about a product than speak to a salesperson.

The same rules apply for social media content posting.It’s so important to have an active social media presence for your business. If you stop posting, your business will stop existing in the eyes of your potential customers, and your customer base will stop engaging with you.

Marketing is not a one-time fix, it’s an ongoing process just like any other. Would you only go to the gym for six months and call it a day? No way. It’s something you do every day to get the results you desire.

Not unlike the financial crisis of 2008, many people stopped marketing during the pandemic because they were uncertain of the times ahead. What a lot of people don’t realize, however, is that this is actually the best time to advertise. That’s because there’s not as much competition, people were online more than ever as they worked from home, and rates were cheap.

We all knew COVID-19 wouldn’t last forever (not that it’s over now, but in our part of the country, business is essentially back to usual) and whoever kept going during these times is who came out on top. People were still buying, they were just buying differently.

I am always amazed when I meet with clients who have spent years going off of only referrals for their lead generation. Don’t get me wrong, referrals from happy clients are the best leads, but you’ll always stay within your circle of influence if you don’t market outside of your circle. It’s really hard to create a growing, successful business if you don’t try to broaden your clientele through advertising. We’ve been privileged to work with clients from Fiji, Canada, Australia and the UK throughout marketing efforts. These people would never know about D2 Branding if we hadn’t done a marketing campaign outside of our client referrals.

The key is finding marketing that works the best for your audience. You have to have the right message for the right people – an irresistible offer to get them to react.

People ask me all the time what the best marketing strategies are. The truth is, it completely depends on the audience you’re going after and where they spend their time. Is it business to business? Then LinkedIn is a great option for you. Do you have a health-related product or clothing reaching women and moms? Then Facebook and Instagram are great options for you. Are you trying to reach senior citizens? We have had success with print magazines that are tailored to that niche audience and Facebook ads. The best thing to do is have a marketing expert evaluate your audience, your messaging, your irresistible offer and come up with a plan that fits within your budget. The most important thing to do is track your return on investment. You should be making more money than you are putting out in marketing and once you see the return, you increase your ad spending to increase that return! And guess what? It never, ever stops.

Deedra Determan, Founder

Deedra Determan started her career working in television for one of the top media companies in the country and later became a marketing consultant in the television industry.

Determan went on to launch a niche website for moms in her local market with over 100,000 moms visiting the website each month using the power of Facebook. After one year from launching, Determan sold the website to Oklahoma Media Company, Griffin Communications. Determan went on to launch a digital marketing agency, D2 Branding that was recently recognized as one of the “Best Entrepreneurial Companies in America” by Entrepreneur Magazine’s Entrepreneur360.

Determan is the host of the Do It My Way Podcast Show, empowering women business owners and CEO’s to do business on their terms with no regrets, hesitation or fear. Determan coaches these women on how to create a personal brand so they can live a life of financial freedom, working when they want to work and making the money they want to make!