The Yellowstep Team By The Yellowstep Team • November 17, 2015

Bad marketing habits we see in the leisure sector that you should kick

Marketing, most businesses attempt it, but how many are seeing returns with the effort they're putting into it? 

With so much advice readily available online, how do you know which are the right tips you should be following? 

Businesses in the leisure industry have an exceptionally more difficult challenge when it comes to seeing returns from their marketing strategy. Not only is it common that they are marketing to a wide demographic, using one approach alone won't always crack it. 

Over the years of working with businesses in the leisure industry to improve the ROI of their marketing efforts, we've noticed some of the bad habits that have been picked up along the way. 

Here's our list of the most common bad marketing habits we commonly see in the industry...  

Not knowing who you're marketing to

The most important asset to making your marketing efforts work is knowing your buyer persona. 

Whenever you're looking to start a specific marketing campaign, you should always look at your target audience. 

As leisure sector supplier, you're usually marketing to several decision makers, so it's easy to forget that you're marketing to a specific person and not just a demographic. 

Creating 'buyer personas' allows you to get to know your audience in greater detail.

By creating this ideal person, you are able to understand how they live, their relevant pain points and problems and how your business can help solve them.

For example, you might be targeting a General Manager, who's been tasked with improving guest experience across the board, but long queue times during busy periods are having an impact on satisfaction.

You can then tailor your marketing campaign solely around these pain points and problems - for example, providing queue line engagement tips or even case studies of solutions you've implemented. Highly targeted content and advertising will mean higher returns on your investment. 

Marketing without a strategy

Unfortunately, hope is not a marketing strategy.

So many businesses invest a lot of money and time into creating flashy and impressive marketing campaigns.

But without a proper strategy, no matter how attractive your campaign may be, you just won't get the returns you were expecting. 

Every marketing campaign should be focus around a SMART goal. 

Specific - Instead of stating you want more visitors to your attraction, aim for a numeric increase, such as you want to attract 10,000 more visitors.

Measurable - Once you've come up with a specific idea of what you want to achieve, you then need to consider how you're going to measure the performance of your campaign. You want to be able to see figures, not just guess that a lot of people have seen it thus you've gained more brand awareness.

Attainable - Aim for a goal that is challenging, but also achievable. Conquer one goal at a time, don't try to fix all of your problems overnight.

Realistic - Don't aim sky high. Of course, we would all love to triple the number of leads we're generating with just one campaign. But, unfortunately creating unrealistic goals will only end in disappointment. The more realistic your goal the more chance you will have of achieving the best from your campaign. 

Time-bound - All successful campaigns have a time limit on achieving their goal. Otherwise how can you accurately track if your marketing efforts have been useful or not? Set a realistic deadline, and monitor the campaign's performance periodically.

With your goal in place, you will have a much clearer idea of the reason behind your campaign and if it is underperforming, how you can make changes to improve it.

Relying too heavily on one technique 

Something we see very often when working with businesses across the leisure sector is the reliance upon one marketing technique entirely. 

Many marketers in the industries rely too heavily on attending events or using email marketing to build their brand's presence and ultimately drive more business. 

Although using event marketing or email alone will give you results, you're never going to reach your primary goal if you're not utilising the channels around you. 

Transform your generic gin and tonic marketing campaign into the perfect cocktail to suit your target audience's needs. 

This cocktail needs to be researched. Spending too much time on one ingredient, such as email marketing, when you know that isn't your target audience's usual choice could ruin the whole taste experience. 

It needs to be a perfect mix of social media, great content, event marketing and email marketing. 

The sooner you can get your cocktail of techniques perfected, the sooner you will start noticing greater ROI on your marketing efforts. 

Not monitoring the ongoing performance of your campaign 

When it comes to boosting the ROI of your upcoming leisure campaign, analysis will become your most powerful marketing tool. 

One of the biggest mistakes marketers make when setting a campaign live, is dusting off their hands and moving on to their next project. 

Once you have launched your campaign, you need to keep a close eye on its performance. Look at what is performing well, and what's performing not so well. Ask yourself why?

Why is something performing so well? Are you able to draw something from this and use the same approach with a future campaign? 

If something is under-performing get to the root of the reason. Make small minute tweaks until you start to see an improvement. 

On-going tweaks and improvements will only benefit your business and your marketing ROI, in the long run. 

Struggling to get the most out of your marketing efforts?

Our brand new leisure sector eBook, Best practice for achieving results at trade shows in the leisure sector features top tips for boosting your marketing ROI over the upcoming trade show season by using some different tactics. 

Download your copy today via the link below!