Simple mistakes = missed opportunities…
If you have just created a new website, or already have a website and wish to maximise your website's exposure, then you need to ensure you aren't causing self-harm to your business.
When you invest your time and effort into your website, don't just leave it there and expect results, you need to constantly provide sources of traffic, reaching out to different audiences through different advertising mediums.
When advertising, it is important to consider your target market and deliver to them alternate methods of contact or the opportunity for a call-to-action incentive or in this case click-to-action.
Listed below are the most common website marketing mistakes we all too frequently happen to witness on a day-to-day basis:
- No website URL on business cards
- No website URL on phone directories, advertisements etc
- Sending traffic to your homepage only
- Advertising your website on TV
- Social media spamming
Not putting your URL on your business cards? Seriously, why?
During the daily grind of good old fashioned networking, too often we are shocked to receive business cards with no email address and/or no website URL,
After the exchange of pleasantries and of course, business cards, our first thought is that there is no site or email address listed on the business card and we proceed to ask the new business network if their business has a website as follows;
"Umm, so... does your business currently have a website?"
And the response;
"Yes, we do actually. Hang on, let me go find a pen and I'll write it down on the back of my business card."
It is amazing how often we receive this response and we are more than aware that there is a wealth of businesses out there that fail to think that having their website's URL on their business card is of some benefit to their potential customers, clients or business networks.
So to all those businesses out there that don't have their website URL proudly displayed on their business cards, we simply ask why? And seriously... Why?
Of course there are obvious benefits to having your website URL on your business card, especially when networking such as allowing customers, clients or business networks to easily visit your website and depending on your site a whole heap of valuable information, all at a more convenient time or environment.
Simply by handing them a business card, they can then go to your website and checkout everything you have to offer.
All that money on advertising and it wouldn’t cost any extra to include your URL
Why spend thousands of $$$ on advertising and forget the key player on your team?
Once again we are stunned, like a fish out of water. Browse through your phone directory, even your local paper and you'll see what we're talking about.
Be on the lookout for large, half page advertisements advertising special deals or promotions however be warned that they too may be a victim of the self-sacrificial practise of simply forgetting to add their website URL to the advertisement.
Advertising in paper based mediums is a great way to drive relevant customers to your business. In 2014, a phone directory is not just a phone directory anymore. It is a business index, a categorised tool for your target audience to do their homework before they make that call, and in 2014, that click counts as well.
You can even test your advertising's conversion rate by creating a new sub-domain or specific landing page just for each ad. Don't link this new sub-domain or landing page on your current site and ensure you set the pages robots.txt file to disallow all. This method will then allow you to track your weekend paper advertising campaign's effectiveness and conversion rate. All traffic received at the new sub-domain or landing page will be directly from this advertising source and so you have the data that enables you to sometimes say the following;
"Well, we spent $1,256 on that big spread ad on the weekend and only received 2 phone calls and 4 clicks on the landing page. Either a bad weekend for reading the paper or we need to look at what works because something didn't..."
You may be shocked to hear this but don’t just send your traffic to your homepage
When you send all your traffic to your website, too often you will login to your website statistics or Google Analytics control panel and see that a large majority of your referrals may be from 'direct requests'.
This is a direct result of the golden goose, word of mouth. This data however, doesn't provide you with much insight into where this word of mouth referral came from, how did they find your site, why did they visit your site by entering in the direct link into the web browser and so on?
There are many methods of distinguishing where your word of mouth referrals come from such as previously mentioned, directing different advertising mediums and methods of exposure to different sub-domains or landing pages, created specifically for converting your relevant target audience.
We have provided examples below to reinforce the idea of using sub-domains and landing pages for different campaigns;
Google AdWords, Bing Ads
Campaign that targets city or region, custom landing page -> www.websiteurl.com/city-region-target-keyword or even sub-domain such as http://region.websiteurl.com
Other advertising mediums
Letter box drops with specials -> www.websiteurl.com/special-deal
Weekend paper -> www.websiteurl.com/weekendpaperpromotion
TV advertisements -> www.websiteurl.com/tv
You can name the landing pages or sub-domains whatever you want, just remember to keep it relevant to the advertising source and include that the promotion is only available at this link for that added bonus incentive.
As mentioned, all traffic to these specific sub-domains or URL's will be directly from your advertising medium and when combined with an incentive, a special deal such as a voucher code or coupon then your advertising will begin to convert traffic to your website and help prevent unknown 'direct request' referrals...
Advertising a website on TV? Conversion success story or ‘I need traffic’ desperation…
There is a fine line between glorified success and spectacular failure when it comes to advertising your website on TV commercial advertisements.
Most people currently watching television don't have the time to get up from the couch or lounge room to reach the computer to switch it on, wait for the computer to load, turn on the Internet and all the while still remembering your URL.
Gone are the days where just including your URL was enough to get ahead of the competition. Users are no longer in that state of click-frenzy that existed a few years back when a user would be interested in checking any website if it was displayed in front of them. Converting traffic from one medium such as the TV to another medium as complex as the Internet requires craft and ability.
Don't become one of those late night advertisers pushed back into the near grave-yard slots desperately trying to advertise their website through TV advertising, spending thousands of dollars in the process. Those thousands could of been invested in a pay-per-click campaign for instant traffic, even a long-term SEO campaign would provide more value for the advertising investment and expenses incurred.
The key to attracting traffic from the couch to the computer is by providing an incentive.
So you see it's not just displaying your URL, not just brand exposure, not just using a dedicated sub-domain or landing page but by also providing an incentive that will get your traffic to follow up and convert into clicks.
Examples of converting incentives include:
- Discounts, specials or coupons
- Free quotation, report or analysis
- Limited time/stock promotions
- Useful information such as 'Latest Updates' or '24/7 News'
- Specialised services or promotions such as 'The only place to find...'
Social media spamming does not equal conversion, it doesn’t even equal traffic
In the golden age of social media, many businesses have responded by rushing to social media platforms such as Facebook, Google+ and Twitter in order to reach that untapped resource of potential traffic. Traffic that may turn to leads, sales, customers and ultimately, conversions.
One result has seen a dramatic increase in 'social media spamming', the method of continuously posting or to be very specific, re-posting the same page or content to users. All too often, the innocent victims are friends or family members forced into liking a page or being bullied into guilt for not sharing that post. All too often, these people aren't the ideal target market or target audience.
.....Gone is the day of annoying phone calls at dinner time from salesmen and call centres.....
..........Arisen from the depths is the dragon, the beast that is social media spam..........
When posting to your social media platforms such as Google, Facebook, Twiter, Pinterest and others, always consider your users and the following guidelines to social media etiquette;
- As with all things in life, don't expect or make demands...
- Don't re-post old pages, posts or tweets because they didn't receive exposure before
- Don't post too frequently. Users don't want to be bombarded or they may end up leaving
- There is no harm or shame in asking for feedback or opinions, valuable marketing data!
- There is no harm or shame in asking for Likes, Shares, Retweets or even a +1
- Keep your posts informative, useful or beneficial to your followers and watch it spread
If you want to attract likes, followers or circles then you need to remember that the golden rule is to always look after your customers, provide them with incentives, promotions or useful information. Writing articles such as this one is a great way to attract a relevant following and has a greater chance of spreading through the social media world by being shared by others.
And speaking of sharing, always remember to share... if you enjoyed our article, please +1, Like or Share, or Tweet about our post using the social media buttons at the top of the page.