Elections are just around the corner and everyone is feeling the pinch of economic downturns, but that is no excuse to stop planning and being creative. Keep in mind what marketing guru Peter Drucker says, “The best way to predict your future is to create it.” He also said, “The computer is a moron” and “unless commitment is made, there are only promises and hopes… but no plans.” So let’s talk about planning—is your 2009 website plan complete? Do you have a commitment?
Tips for Getting to the Top
Here are some quick tips to get you in the game and prepare for success in 2009…
Tip 1: Define your key objectives and goals for your online initiatives. There is a remarkable different between an objective and a goal, yet the two go hand-in-hand and cannot exist without the other.
Objectives are the concept and direction – subjective, qualitative and sometimes not clear. These are ideas that need formulating, either by an individual or a team, that may say, “Okay, we want to get from Point A to Point E…how we do that, by leaping over B, C, and D?” Objectives specify what learners will be able to do, or perform, to be considered competent. Another way to view objectives is that they are goals redrafted to state performances in terms that are clearly tangible, such as, “The objective is have a 300% ROI by the end of the fiscal year.” It is advisable that when writing objectives, be sure to describe the intended result of instruction rather than the process of instruction itself.
Goals are exactly what are required – objective, quantifiable and clear. Goal-setting ideally involves establishing specific, measurable and time-targeted objectives. Work on the theory of goal-setting suggests that it can serve as an effective tool for making progress by ensuring that participants have a clear awareness of what they must do to achieve or help achieve an objective. On a personal level, the process of setting goals allows people to specify and then work towards their own objectives — most commonly financial or career-based goals. It is a given that in order to achieve a goal, usually, one must be focused.
Five types of goals:
- Specific: one should precisely define objectives or goals rather than tolerating diffuseness or nebulousness
- Measurable: one should define a method of measuring the objectives/goals
- Agreed-To/Achievable: all parties need to agree to the objectives/goals, and to their achievability
- Realistic/Rewarding/Relevant: one must define realistic objectives/goals, the accomplishment of which must make sense
- Time-bound: completion must occur within an agreed time-scale
Apply these methods to your 2009 website objectives and goals and see what happens. We’re here to help…
Tip 2: Market online to your consumers. Discover where they are searching, socializing, sharing, shopping and participating – then acquire them to your site. Here are five keys points to keep in mind, trends that will prove themselves in 2009:
1) Google’s other advertising programs – Google now offers a host of new marketing opportunities through its AdWords console including radio, video, newspaper, and print advertising. Also, Google offers a “pay per action” program where you only pay if/when a prospect completes a task such as a sale, a download, or sign-up. Each other these programs have their own pros and cons which we will get into at a later time but all of them are seriously worth investigating.
2) Ad Networks –Did you know people only engage in search about 5% of the time? As such, finding people when they are not searching is a smart play. The best way to do this is through ad networks. Many of them work just like pay per click but with advanced capabilities to target people by specific site and by specific demographic. Much more control than search and often less expensive, advertising via these ad networks can bring strong ROI to your business.
3) Blog Advertising – Have you heard yet about blogging? Of course you have, there are now well over 50 million blogs. Have you heard about advertising in Blogs? Probably not but it is also a very smart way to spend your budget, as long as you can find the right blog and produce the right creative to match.
4) Social Network Advertising – Most people are involved in social networking through sites like MySpace, Facebook, LinkedIn, Flickr, and so forth. There are literally thousands of social networking sites now out there and advertising through these sites can reap great rewards.
5) Local Marketing – most business are local yet they often engage nationally with their marketing spends. Local marketing is a way to make sure local business get seen locally. Sites like YellowPages.com, Local.com, TrueLocal.com, and Mojopages.com can ensure you are seen when local prospects go beyond search engines to find businesses like yours.
Tip 3: Design your website Conversion points. The aim here is for consumers to buy signup, share, and comment and interact in your brand experience:
1} Buy Now – Instant purchase, instant revenue.
2} Join Email – the more you have signed up, the more customers to send information out to.
3} Phone Number – A live, friendly voice on the phone is always nice.
4} Request Appointment – Make them feel they are there waiting for you.
5} Download – Have PDFs customers can download and printout? Link them!
Tip 4: Develop easy software. Make it easy to update your websites content, commerce, and community features. Why deal with software that requires you to constantly refer back to the User’s Manual or use the help function key? That wastes time and causes aggravation—not only for you and your employees, but your customers and clients as well. Nothing will make a user go off and Google to another grand offering if your website is difficult to navigate.
Some import and simple matters to keep in mind: make sure your content fresh and up to date, this will keep customers/consumers coming back. Who wants to read the same blog post that has been sitting there for seven weeks? Today’s software enables you to easily post text copy, images, videos and more to your site to keep things new and going.
Tip 5: Keep an eye on who is visiting. It is vital to maintain your initiatives through consumer web reporting and analytics, allowing you to monitor where people are coming from, what they are doing on the site and more. See how many people are hitting the sight daily, what are the peak hours, what search engine parameters they are using to find you, what they click and where they are going. Through analysis of your traffic, you know what to do to get more traffic flowing in, as well as what not to do that drives traffic away.
Here is an example: Ninthlink did the following DEMO for Google, check it out!
We can do the same for your company, and more! Ninthlink is open to chat for 30 minutes for FREE with your team about what you are looking to accomplish and how we can help.