Written by Stu Kushner

Website Strategies

In order to make your website effective, you need to attract new leads, convert leads into contacts and convert contacts into customers. That, in a nutshell, is what marketing is all about. Marketing is the method and the means by which you “brand” your business and services in the public consciousness.

Marketing Strategy is the key to your online business.  Marketing strategy sets the goals you need to achieve and is shaped by your business goals.  Once you have established your Marketing Strategy, you can create your Marketing Plan.

A Marketing Plan establishes how you will achieve the goals you set in the Marketing Strategy. For example:

Marketing Strategy: Introduce new line of household cleaning products.
Marketing Plan: Identify potential users and develop website and media campaign based on potential user demographics.

Branding is a unique name, statement, symbol and/or design that identifies you and your product and services from others.  A recognizable brand delivers a unique message and helps establish user recognition and loyalty. A brand is the “face” your online customer sees when they log on. Like Bill Gates and Microsoft or Steve Jobs and Apple, try to make your name synonymous with your company.

One of the best ways to create customer loyalty is to have online customer feedback. The Net is proactive, what they like about your services can spread though the web to friends, family and anyone who logs onto your site. It’s digital “word-of-mouth” advertising.

You also need feedback. Customer Comments and Feedback can tell you a lot about your web site visitors. Who they are and what motivates them? What factors affect their decisions?  Comments can help define and polish both product and website, and help you refine your site to attract customers that will need or want your product or services. 

Written by Stu Kushner

Web Design Clues

A great web design is an important element in marketing a company or a company’s product.

Make that MORE important: because a web site doesn’t just advertise, it connects with a potential customer, allowing that customer to immediately connect with you.

With so many websites, a high-quality, professional web site is not an option; it’s a necessity. But to have your website taken seriously by web savvy viewers and casual browsers alike, you need to have a design that is both professional and unique.

Web Designing is the new “art form”.  Few company executives or employees are natural Web Designers, so it’s not a task you can assign to just anyone. But many do; and the result is often a poorly designed website that does not promote your company or your business.

So how can you get a professional web design that will be recognized and attract customers? Like all projects, it needs knowledge and hard work.  But you can save both time and money with a few basic rules:

Keep It Simple. Don’t overload it with data – it’s an advertisement, not a catalogue. Simple web designs are easier, cheaper, faster, and more flexible and adaptable to all web environments, “Smartphone’s” or PC’s alike.

Focus on the Key Elements.  Use short, eye-catching statements that show your most important assets, skills or products.

Entice the Viewer to Connect. Make your links obvious, intuitive and accessible; Many websites use a “two-column layout”; with a right hand side bar and a navigation bar at the top.

Make your site appealing, but not “busy”. Use primary colors with only one or two secondary colors for contrast.

There are millions of websites. You want yours to be unique, but accessible. Interesting, but not distracting from its primary purpose – to inform and advertise.

Written by Stu Kushner

Marketing Tips for Tight Budgets

Bad websites are like bad movies; if they don’t get any attention, they disappear.

In the internet world, attention is the currency. The more attention you create, the more attention you get. With a highly saturated internet it’s more difficult than ever to attract attention to YOUR website.  You’re selling fruit in an orchard; how do you get a visitor to buy YOUR “apples”? Not only are you up against large companies with huge marketing assets, but you’re also competing with other distractions as well.

But you don’t have to spend a ton of money to connect, just be creative. Here are some tips to help you market your business on the web.

  1. Create a LinkedIn group. A LinkedIn group is a free resource that can steer potential customers to your site and provide information, new contacts and gives a personal touch to your marketing, while also steering traffic and more sales. Avoid the ‘hard sale” however.
  2. Get published.   While it may be difficult to get on the front cover of a major magazine, you can create marketing opportunities by being featured in local papers, TV or radio programs. Make a name by supporting charities and local events, and get featured in a local “niche blog” in exchange for some freebies.
  3. Get on YouTube. YouTube can be a powerful platform for an online business. Just post videos of you and your product. Include:
  • A keyword-researched headline that attracts attention,
  • A short, clear editorial message
  • Offer discounts or prizes when they visit and say “I saw your video!”

You can avoid expensive cameras, lighting equipment and editing by using the cameras built into a Smartphone or the MAC iMovie, etc. You can hire a professional editor for a small fee.

Written by Stu Kushner

Marketing Your Website

Getting your product in front of potential customers in a saturated environment like the internet can be challenging. Most companies have tight budgets so getting the biggest “bang” for your “buck” is essential. Here are some tips on developing a successful online strategy on a limited budget.  

1.      Know your market.
You need to have a clearly defined audience. So figure out your target: who is most likely to buy your product or services?  Is it primarily men or women? What is their financial status, age group, and interests?

2.      Set your goals.
Determine what you are looking to gain from online marketing. Increased awareness? Increased revenue? You will probably have multiple goals, but keep track of what they are so you can measure your success. When you reach your initial goals, set new goals so your company can continue to improve.

3.      Set your budget.
You know who your target is and what your goals are, so plan your budget accordingly. Fortunately, a lot of available web “platforms” are free, but “free form” online marketing might not be the best choice for you. Budget some money for web outlets that will showcase you company and products.

4.      Set your “Brand”.
With all the companies on the web, how your customers see you is critical.  Having a unique, professional website that conveys a sense of professionalism and permanence is essential. The Web is interactive, so don’t be passive; take time to interact with potential customers and build relationships with them. That will help establish your presence.

5.  Optimize your Search Engine.
When someone enters a query you want to be one of the first results displayed. To do this, make your website “search engine friendly” by using commonly searched keywords and descriptions that will link back to your site.