Your Company Website
You need a website, and Facebook fan page isn’t enough. We can help.
If you tried the website route before, only to blow up a lot of money and wind up with a mess, fret not. Things have changed on the web, and the new array of web 2.0 tools are designed for everyday people. With no more knowledge than what would be required to use a basic word processor, such as Microsoft Office’s WORD program you can post text, images, links and even video to your website. In fact the very site that you are reading right now requires no special computer skills to operate. Once we set it up – it’s all “point and Click.”
We can provide you with a website, including hosting the site. Your new website will be set up with complete functionality, and when it’s delivered it’s, “Ready For Content.” That means have your photos and articles ready.
What About E-commerce? Can I Sell Stuff Online?
2012 is an interesting moment to answer that question. There are currently a number of WordPress “Extras” that you can purchase and upload to your site. These are known as “Plug Ins.” Many are free, although the best of the E-Commerce Plug Ins are generally only available by purchase. However, until these products are in greater use and are well tested they should be considered not for the faint of heart. For retailers with a limited time and monetary media budget, their website should be focused upon conveying information to current and potential clients.
How Do I Promote My Website?
The greatest way to promote your website is by continually updating it with interesting, exciting and up to date content – especially images and quality writing.
What Do I Write About?
You’re in expert in your field. You should make it your business to share your thoughts and opinions – especially on key products, with your clients. The process of writing short interesting, anecdotal or review type articles on your site is called “Blogging.” It’s considered not quite editorial, not quite advertisement. Consider it “Advertorial”, featuring the best aspects of both. People believe what they read online today as past generations believed newspaper writing. Content is king if you’re looking to truly build audience and traffic on your site. So what do you write about:
- Product Reviews – Assign a reviewer to review a new product each week, or require each employee a minimum of one review per week or month.
- Retailer Favorites – Products in your store that you love and recommend.
- Industry Trends
- Upcoming Events, Sales, Tastings, Menu Changes, New Employees
- New Product Announcements. New Service Announcements.
- Contests, giveaways and other interactive marketing events.
- Anything else that you consider Newsworthy.
Maybe in the past this required a full time “Web Guy”, but today posting is easy as point and click.
It’s Just Not Me, and I have No One that Can Handle This. So Should I Scrape the Website Idea?
No. Although it’s not nearly as good, you still need a website so that your potential customers can find you online. People under 45 years of age use the net and their smart phones like past generations used the yellow pages. Writing a business name in a Google search engine on a smart phone will often pull up that companies homepage, which should include the business contact phone number and business address. In fact, many smartphones, such as Blackberry and Iphone will actually highlight the number and call the business with a simple click. People nowadays rely on this technology for the lion share of their business searches. To ignore this would be like purposefully keeping yourself out of the phone book / Yellow Pages circa 1975.
So if you’re not a natural extrovert, and you have an aversion to blogging, you should create a “Static Site.” WordPress will still make the creation easy, and once you’re done you’ll have posted your shingle in cyberspace. No new content, no advertising and marketing or client retention, but at least a potential client looking for you will be able to easily find your business address and phone number. Plus, should you ever decide to start blogging, you’ll have the web infrastructure in place and ready for content.
Everybody Talks About Social Media. What About That?
Odds are they’re talking about four well known “Social Media” Websites – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube. However, there are literally thousands of Social Networking and Social Interaction websites. Even a forum – a place where people with a common interest meet to chat about their common interest – can be considered a “Social Media” opportunity. So let’s keep it simple. We’ll start with some examples. Here are the Voodoo Tiki Facebook Page, Twitter Page, YouTube Page and finally La Presidenta – Donna DeCunzo Taddeo’s LinkedIn Page. You’re invited to join them all. (PS – See those blue boxes over on the far right? Those also link directly to Voodoo Tiki Social media pages.)
Social Media 101
You can sign up for Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube accounts in under an hour, an that includes actually building out your various profiles on each site. Once again, like your website - Content is King – so completely fill out all the fields in these profiles, including uploading images, or in the case of YouTube, a first video. These sites will also scan your email address book (if you allow them to) and invite those contacts to connect with you on each respective site. You are now, “Socially Connected” to these people in your address book. Now what? Content, Content, Content.
If you expect people to pay attention to your social media “Channels” you need to post interesting content. If you already have exciting news, parties, tastings and other marketable events to talk about you have a huge advantage. If not, you’ll have to take on the double endeavor of creating these events while learning about how to get the word out on them.
Goals Summary: Blog, Tweet and Update Facebook and Linked in Regularly – Daily if possible! Get in the habit of sharing excitement over sales, specials, events and other marketing endeavors. Take pictures! Share with your potential customers the good time in your place of business. Photos show your customers why your business is worth visiting.
Social Media 201
Maybe you’re already tweeting and Facebooking. You blog occasionally. You have a LinkedIn profile and you even have a short movie you uploaded on your YouTube Channel but you don’t know where to take this next. The next step is to get your articles bookmarked, or picked up by other sites to create “Links.” A link is a shortcut to another site or article for example, This Is a Link To Some Marketing Ideas You Might Like. Every time a site links to you they are voting for you. A link is like another website telling a search engine such as Google, “Hey, this is interesting.” This creates what people in SEO (Search Engine Optimization) call “Link Juice.” The more link juice you have, the higher you come up on search such as Google, Yahoo, Bing etc.
In addition to “Link Juice”, these links provide people gateways, or entrances to your site. So for example, if you send out Press Releases about events in your shop or hospitality venue a person might see the release on a news site like Google News or Yahoo News and then click a link within the release to visit your site and learn more.