How to get your business out of a marketing rut (part 1)

How to get your business out of a marketing rut (part 1)

Do you feel like your business is in a marketing rut and you're struggling to get out of it? Read this article for help on how to identify a marketing rut, and most importantly, how to get out of it.
by Zanthe Agrela
10. 19. 2020

Ever feel like your business and marketing have become mundane, boring and predictable? Are you struggling to see the value of the marketing budget you are spending? Are your competitors doing much more innovative, stand out of the crowd kind of stuff while your business is just not bringing in the brand awareness, sales or sign ups that you are looking for?

In this guide, we show you how to identify a marketing rut, and more importantly, how to get out of it - fast. Time is money and marketing budget spent without seeing the return on investment for your unique business is just throwing money down the drain. Read on to learn more about how to identify if your business is indeed in a marketing rut, what do these key trigger points look like and what steps to follow today to get out of it. 

Identifying a marketing rut

It’s pretty easy to get stuck just going through the motions of everyday tasks. We do it all the time, going about our regular lives minute-by-minute, day-by-day and as each day, week and month bleeds into another, we get so caught up mundane routines that we miss the signs that something isn’t working. 

In marketing, too often we get caught in the motions of making sure the ads are live and running, writing article features, and launching campaigns in time without actually analyzing whether it’s actually working and yielding results. 

Well, the sad truth is nothing is going to change unless we identify where the problem actually lies, and do something different to change it. 

So, let’s take a look at these top 10 signs that your business marketing is in a rut and decide for yourself if it’s time to make some changes.

You aren’t sure what success would look like for your business.

Without a solid direction or goal for your marketing plan, you can’t plan appropriately or measure success.

You have no marketing strategy or plan. 

Doing marketing on the fly when you’re feeling threatened by your competitors or a new product launch is a mistake a lot of businesses make. With doing a little here and there, without any plan or strategy, you can’t expect maximum results. What you need is a process, a plan, and an always on approach as well as a more sporadic product or service push for new and/or seasonal items.

When nothing is working and every marketing effort seems to fail.

 When emails, social media, display ads, search, aren’t bringing meaningful results to your business, it might be time to try a new approach.

You have no accountability. 

You have tried everything from reading marketing articles and books, attending seminars and perhaps even getting in-house help, hiring a third-party agency or trying to juggle this yourself as a business owner. Marketing budget is expensive if used poorly, but in the right hands, it’s an investment in your business, which is why it’s important to ask yourself why your efforts aren’t working and make a change.

You are not getting objective feedback.

Your friends, colleagues and family may be good for stroking your ego but when it comes to spending marketing money, especially in the tough times we live in presently, you need objective opinions and a trusted advisor that will guide you in the right direction and give objective opinions and fresh perspective.

You aren’t trying anything new. 

You may consider yourself old-fashioned and that’s fine, as long as it doesn’t apply to your marketing. Not trying anything new, means you won’t get any new results. A good marketing strategy will ensure a 90% marketing budget split on tried and tested ways, bringing brand awareness, user engagement, or signups and sales; and 10% on trying something bold and new to raise the bar for your brand.

You attempt to take on all the marketing yourself. 

I see a lot of this in small business, where owners try to balance running their business and doing all their marketing research and management themselves. While you may be an exper in your line of business, you can’t possibly manage to do marketing (which is a full-time job) as well as run your business full-time. I see this a lot, and often think, if your geyser has burst, do you try to do the repairs yourself? There are certain things that are just worth paying someone who’s qualified to take care of. This way, you’re making the best use of your time as a business owner.

You aren’t ready to hire full time help.

While it would be great to have a whole team of designers, marketers, SEO experts, web developers, and copywriters working on your brand, the reality is it really it is more cost effective to hire a marketing agency to work on your marketing for you, as opposed to hiring just a marketing manager (who can’t design, copy check and build landing pages etc.). An ad agency has access to all these creative people for you, ensuring you have everything you need to put your best foot forward.

You aren’t communicating with your marketer.

Perhaps you have hired professional help and your products and services have a specific buying cycle, or specific product launches at certain times of the year or month. You could also be doing an offline marketing campaign and along with other marketing efforts, which is great; unless you aren’t communicating this with your digital marketing team. Your marketing team are an extension of your business and they can only help you if they’re in the loop about what’s going on in your business. It’s better to give too much info on your business, its products and services, so that your offline efforts match your online efforts and your product pushes match your product or services seasonal demand.

Your marketing is done on a trial and error basis. 

How much time and money have you been wasting on marketing ideas, campaigns and ads that haven’t worked? How many months have you spent testing and evaluating only to find that you aren’t getting the results you had hoped for? Think about it, or better still actually work it out. In the long-term, marketing mistakes are costly, and they can definitely hurt your business. 

If these signs sound even slightly familiar to you, you may very well be knee deep in a marketing rut with no hope of a way out. In the next guide we will be exploring how to make it out of this rut, as well as exploring some actionable steps you can take today to ensure that not another cent of your marketing budget gets wasted on fruitless efforts.  

If you are concerned about wasting time and money on marketing efforts that are producing no real value to your business, or if you want a marketing team on board that cares as much about success of your business as much as you do, then email us at and we will assist you. You can also follow Arc Interactive on FacebookTwitter or on Instagram