One of the principle of selling talks about finding the need behind the need. Not necessarily what the customer says he wants but what does he really need. The key point is if we don’t ask the question, how do we know? We need to engage the prospect in a conversation before we tell them what they need. What is it that my customers want? How do they want to feel after they use my product?
The movie Field of Dreams was a good movie in my opinion, as it entertained me with a good story for a couple of hours, but the fact is it was fiction. The concept of “build it and they will come” doesn’t apply to your website.
Creating a new website can be a good start, but that doesn’t mean search engines like Google will rank it well and that people searching for your type of business will find it or buy from you.
Let’s look at it this way, if we build a baseball diamond on a farm somewhere outside of Winnipeg and expect people to know about, just because we built it, do you really think people will just show up?. I doubt the Winnipeg Goldeyes would show up, never mind the Chicago Black Sox.
It’s important Continue reading
It used to be that if you tell 10 people and they tell 10 people, and so on, soon 100 people would have been told. It took a while, certainly not measured in seconds, but eventually it got out. Today, with the onset of social media and the pervasive use of online and mobile technology, the same principle still applies but it happens at light speed and is only limited by the number of contacts a user has; most are a lot more than 10. Continue reading
When your brand is used as a transitive verb, adjective and participle, I believe it can be unequivocally said that you have reached the highest status of brand recognition.
The absolute monopoly Google has over what we know and the access to information came to light the week before last when Google suffered a service outage. I needed to look something up, went to Google it and became completely lost. Google was down. The path to the knowledge highway was inaccessible. This short outage resulted in a 40% global dip in traffic. In my long Internet career, this was only the second time that Google had failed me. The first being when I tried to find a version of a childhood memory of “A Quarter Has a Caribou on it”, and now this. Continue reading
Several years ago, some of our industry pundits were indicating that the traditional methods of advertising and marketing were no longer of value and all of your marketing spend ought to be put into social and online efforts and something called community based marketing.
While it is true that more and more buyers are doing their research online and gathering the information they need to help make a buying decision, and some even buy online, staying top of mind means being seen and heard in a variety of formats and places.
Today, it is all about creating and maintaining awareness of your company, its products or services and how they can help the buyer with their emotional and logical needs. The challenge is that attention spans are getting shorter and shorter and you now have only seconds to register with your future customer or they will move on.
The days of just having an online presence are long gone. I consider a website that doesn’t change an electronic brochure and Google does as well. The majority of people do some research online before purchasing a product or service. So having a website that has up to date information is important and two key things you must think of:
1) Are you giving the online viewer the opportunity to easily request any additional information they need in order to finalize their decision?
At times brands that have a presence both in Canada and the U.S. and one of the trepidations that occurs is branding oneself as being ‘too Canadian’. For whatever reason, we can sew a Canadian flag on our backpacks, we can put “Made in Canada” on labels but when it comes to online marketing, even something as basic as a domain extension, there is a jolt of ‘are we sure we want to do this?’
The funny thing is, more than ever, we’re no longer living in the ‘dot com’ world – rather we’re in the ‘dot somethingorother’ realm. Continually, hosts are coming up with new extensions that we all want to buy into, and to an extent we do, if for no other reason than to protect our business names from being bought up by unsavoury companies who’d charge larger amounts that standard retailers.
It almost seems counter intuitive to patriotize yourself in the global community. How many American companies do you see, for example, that have “.us” as part of their website address?
Here’s the reality folks – the same way we wear the red and white proudly in our business’s daily life is the same thing we should do online. Is there nothing that says “I am Canadian” more than dot ca in the virtual world?
When you choose to brand your online presence with the Canadian extention, you say to the world, “yes, I’m Canadian”, and in doing so you are showing the quality of your work. Canada has a long and proud international history, one that we need to continually build on and raise our glasses to.
So when it comes to purchasing your next web domain, make sure it’s .ca – you will reap the rewards of your pride.
Of course you can. There are a variety of tools out there that will help you build a site, albeit a basic one, one that will function as an online brochure and validate your business. And there is more coming from some very big and reputable companies.
But, if you want one that is found, one that stays found, and actually drives or helps to create opportunities for your business, you need to pay attention to your online assets. And, you need to find new ways to drive traffic to it so that they can see what you can do for them; that’s right, it’s all about them; the customer.
Over the past month or two, I have seen some pretty nice websites that were built by the owner using some form of online tool. Now, just about anyone can build a nice site as long as you have some content, some imagery and some idea of the buying process and calls to action. And, as long as you know about directory submissions, tagging, optimizing for search engines and keywords, you will be just fine. But, as is with a lot of things in life, the devil is in the details.
Online marketing has become a major force for both brand recognition and getting prospects to contact you. Everywhere you look, someone is on their mobile device and a lot of the time, they are looking for information about a product, about a service or where to get what they need.
Can you really afford not to have your online presence working as hard as you are? Sometimes traditional works, most times online has a wider range but either way, we’re here to help; give us a call.
When I meet with one of my clients, I use an analogy of a website being like a child – that it is a living, breathing organism. The more you feed it, the stronger it grows.
The food for your website, in this case, is fresh content, and there is no better form of nutrition than blogs (and yes, I will further this analogy in later blogs) which tend to be the true active parts of your website. Unless you’re regularly updating flyers or service offerings, your blog will be the spot you will be doing most of your activity.
The question that arises, then, is how do you blog.
It’s a question that most who don’t have confidence in their writing ask often, and at times will back away from any thought of blogging because of it.
The truth is, blogging is a lot easier than you think – it’s a matter of avoiding over-thinking it.
The biggest problem is the fear of looking bad in your online communication. Everything from bad grammar to misspelled words become the boogeymen of your publishing, let alone the idea of truly presenting yourself as an expert.
The key is that the voice you use has to be representative of your company. If your company line is to be warm and inviting, consider a conversational style. If you’re a firm that has education as its primary strategy, then carry this method to your blog.
The bottom line with blogging, to borrow one of my favourite lines from The Simpsons, is to write the way people talk. Use a voice rather than a straight facts-and-terms approach and you will keep casual readers coming back for more.
For more expert tips on website content generation, contact Jon at Cohesive Marketing.
The new Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) goes into effect July 1, 2014. CASL covers the sending of commercial electronic messages that may be accessed by a computer in Canada (which usually just means cases where the recipient is in Canada). CASL covers more than just email — it also covers texts, IMs, and automated cell phone messages sent to computers/phones in Canada.
CASL requires you to get express consent before sending someone a message. All requests for express consent must touch on the following three points: 1) You must specify exactly why you want the consent 2) You must give your identifying/contact information as well as the contact info of anyone else for whom you’re getting the consent and 3) You must provide a clear method so that they can remove their consent. You can get this in writing or orally, but you should keep a record of when/how you got consent.
With the introduction of CASL, outbound marketing has some very specific and tight rules but if executed correctly, and legally, it can still be very effective; actually, more so now as you will know that the recipient actually wants to hear from you.
As well, a properly executed inbound marketing strategy is now more important than ever before. CASL legally restricts many of the questionable outbound tactics some people have relied on for far too long. With these tactics no longer at their disposal, the inbound imperative is now even more important.
Ultimately, as the email-sender, you have to understand your obligations and determine how to be in compliance. The information provided here is to help the reader better understands the issues around online marketing. While we are sure of the accuracy of the information provided, it is imperative that you consult your legal counsel for a professional interpretation. This information is not provided as legal advice and is solely provided as information only.