Are You Making These Marketing Mistakes? by Scott's MarketplaceThe goal of every small business owner is to attract (and retain) customers while building a profitable company. And one of the ways you can make this happen is through a great marketing plan.

But what happens when marketing goes wrong? A marketing misstep can not only cause you to lose current customers and profit, but also get a bad reputation online – which can often be hard to fix.

Check out three common marketing mistakes below:

Too Much Jargon

We all have our own industry-specific words that we use at the office – but that doesn’t mean you should put them into your marketing message. Your customers don’t want to read jargon; they want to read a message they can relate to and understand.

Geoffrey James of Inc.com agrees: “In my experience, 95% of the marketing and sales messages from small to medium companies suffer from the kind of rampant buzzwordery that’s common inside enterprise-level corporate bureaucracies. It’s almost as if entrepreneurs think that they won’t be taken seriously if they don’t use all right clichés. Ironically, the opposite is true. Nothing makes a message break through the noise better than plain and simple language – if only because it’s rare.”

Ignoring Customers on Social Media

Ignoring customers on social media is something many small business owners have been guilty of at some point. It’s easy to set up your social media accounts on Facebook and Twitter, but with work and other obligations, it can be hard to find the time to monitor them. However, once you start getting people using your social media account as a medium for customer service, a timely response is crucial.

TheSojo.net notes, “Every social media post by a customer deserves a reply, even if it’s a simple thank you. It can be stressful to see a customer post a negative comment on social media. Resist the urge to delete it and reply publicly, so all of your customers will see that you’re dedicated to excellent customer service.”

Here’s another great tip from TheSojo.net, “Search your @username regularly on all social media. Don’t forget to also search for product and brand names, as not every consumer talking about your brand online is talking to you. Social Mention is a free tool for monitoring mentions of your brand on social media, and Hootsuite lets you monitor all of your accounts in one place.”

Skipping Analytics

Analytics are a great way to learn about your target audience. Did your readers like that blog you posted? What was your most popular tweet in the past week? How much traffic is your website getting? You can learn all of these things and more by monitoring analytics.

TheSojo.net suggests, “Use Google Analytics, Facebook insights, and other analytics applications to look for visitors who stay on your site the longest. Create a profile for that customer using what they looked at, where they came from, and any interaction you’ve had with them online. Once you find what works keep up your analytics monitoring so you can see if anything changes.” Doing this will help you learn what marketing tactics work the best for your target audience and will help you grow.

Tell us: Have you made any of the above marketing mistakes?