To get more customers, most businesses setup a website with great branding, showing off their products or skills. But these things aren’t the most important when it comes to online marketing and getting sales leads.
Good, SEO-optimised websites can attract specific buyers. They are potentially much more than an online sales brochure. They differ from static advertising in magazines, radio or newsprint – Definitely NOT something business owners should just throw money at each month in the hope they get some sales leads – Commonly referred to as ‘spray and hope’ advertising…
Beyond Branding and Wishful Thinking
Let’s start with design. Typically, advertising experts, graphic designers and marketing gurus are taught to get ‘the look’ and/or killer message right and customers will come. Interrupt the prospect with something spectacular – Basically, design any website just as we would printed brochures, magazine ads, newsletters or even a 30-second TV spot. But strategy this doesn’t work well online.
Marketing guru Seth Godin started us thinking about this ten years ago. Conversion scientist Brian Massey (right) recently commented, “We have “interruptive” advertising so ingrained, in which we have to talk to prospects before they need our product, that we’ve forgotten how to simply help those that need us solve their problem with our sites”
Forget Mass Advertising and Push Marketing – Target Buyers Instead
This is the easy bit. Yet businesses and the creative industry are still struggling with online marketing and how it works for consumers. It’s been hard to learn that the old, grossly inefficient ‘push marketing’ method is a turnoff and people simply click away.
with online, you can even determine which product lines to focus upon, for the highest return
Think about it. When people go online to look for a particular product or service, they already have a problem, need or interest. Google AdWords tools can even tell us how many are doing it each month and an analysis can even provide us clues as to how many should arrive on our website, as opposed to our competitors! It’s true…
You don’t need to push out any mass marketing message to these people. Those coming via a Google search are already qualified prospects. Surely this is the holy grail for any sales or marketing person. Seeking out qualified prospects! What we’re saying is, if you’ve done the hard yards around website coding, good content, SEO practices and AdWords, well qualified prospects are now coming to you.
The last thing you want to give them is the classic mass marketing message off your printed brochure or something the local mass marketing ad agency has dreamed up…
The Five-Point Website ‘To Do’ List to Attract Buyers
Here’s what’s needed of you want to grow your online sales leads and business results. Note there’s no easy fixes or one thing you can do today to succeed online. Those promising such magical things are simply scamming you.
- Firstly, check where you are in terms website ranking and traffic potential. You need to know where you are online and what you need to fix to get good, relevant traffic. Find out your best keywords and determine market size. (Read our website ranking article)
- Secondly, all content has to be prospect-centric. It’s all about the customers problem, not about you. No more chest thumping, telling them how good you are. They don’t care. If this bit seems hard, hire a copywriter. (Use the we-we calculator.)
- Thirdly, realise websites should evolve and be under constant [weekly] revision and expansion. Every new page should be tested. If it doesn’t work, change it. CMS websites and toolsets makes this easier, doing in minutes what once took days. (Use WordPress)
- Fourthly, re-focus site structure. A Google-optimised site with dozens of product, service or educational landing pages will have as many arriving at the internal pages, as the home page. Also have forms, videos, social media interactions. (See Marketing Grader )
- Lastly, accept that sales conversions via online is a science, not an art. Spend as much time analysing the website metrics as you do message, offer or design elements. Data reveals the hidden truths within the minds of your customers. ( See Kissmetrics)
Connecting Prospects with Suppliers – It’s Now Called In-Bound Marketing
This entire plan is about connecting those looking for products and services (qualified leads), to those that supply them. Yellow Pages once provided this service. Now Google, your website and social media do the same, only better and providing businesses much more control than any clunky directory listing!
It’s New – Expect Resistance
It isn’t always easy for smaller businesses to get their head around this concept. Certainly major directories, marketers and creatives that drive much advertising today have little interest in it. That’s why companies like Hubspot in the US exist to provide an ‘inbound marketing’ optimisation service, helping businesses get found online – Doing pretty much what we’ve outlined above in our 5-point plan. Marketing grader is one of their very handy [free] products we often recommend.
For those smaller businesses here who cannot afford the $5-25k pa Hubspot fees, or need a system that is better optimised for New Zealand conditions, just talk to us. We can offer similar services that drive traffic and sales leads in a simple, more affordable manner.
Phone me on 09 889 0785 or email me at zn.oc.gnitekramlatigidnull@nivek