E-Marketing Strategy: Avoid a Major Mistake in Online Marketing
Luckily, this misstep is easily avoidable: Get your own house in order before you send out invitations.
STEP 1: Define Your Site's Goals
The first step in any site overhaul (or even site tinkering) is to define the goals of your site. Without clear objectives, an effective redesign is impossible. What would you like your website to do? Create a list of the top three goals you have for the site.
Here's an example:
1. Sell our books.
2. Promote our books to other sellers.
3. Provide book sales materials to bookstores, media outlets, distributors and readers.
STEP 2: Define Your Ideal Audience
Now that you have defined what you would like the site to do, you should decide what types of folks will most effectively help you reach those goals. Who are your ideal customers? Who would you like to attract through your Web marketing efforts? I'll cover how to find those folks in a future column, but for now, put together a list of your site's most important audiences, ordered from most desirable to least.
Here's an example:
1. Individual book buyers (rough demographics: women ranging in age from 30 to 55)
2. Wholesale buyers (bookstores, distributors, national chain stores)
3. Media outlets (book reviewers, interviewers, bloggers)
STEP 3: Define Content
A site is only as good as the content it provides. People do not visit websites seeking jazzy logos or design that "pops." They come for content. Plan the Web content you will provide to the audiences you've defined. Keep in mind that the content you would like your audience to lust after—your latest commercial, your press releases, your company news—is seldom the content that they find interesting. Your content must provide value in order for it to capture an audience. Step into the shoes of your visitors. Ask yourself, "What do they want?"—not, "What do I want them to see?"