The Web Revisited
When contemplating an online presence, revenue is a top concern, however, saving time, money and other resources are significant benefits that should be considered as well.
Full news press
Nearly every business can benefit from posting press materials online. To provide those seeking information about a company, an entire press kit can reside on a Web site, including a company history, the biographies of senior staff, contact information, news releases, a map—free maps are available from MapBlast.com and MapQuest.com—and office or store hours. All of which can be accessed 24 hours a day, seven days a week. A print version of a press kit, with folder, photos, article reprints and copied fact sheets can cost $3 or more to produce and mail but the only expenditure associated with an online version is a one-time cost for scanning and HTML coding. The materials are delivered immediately at no cost whatsoever.
Have it in writing
In addition to press kits, there are many other documents that can be posted online to aid clients and customers to reduce budgetary pressures. Both publishers and potential authors benefit when publishers post guidelines, informing aspiring writers as to the types of books and submissions requirements they preferred. "I meet so many people at sales shows that I send to the site for writers' guidelines," says Laurie Kelly of Career Press. Kelly says that 75 percent of the Franklin Lakes, NJ publisher's writers' guideline requests are now handled on its site at www.careerpress.com Referring interested writers online saves phone charges, printing and copying costs and time for everyone involved, especially if potential authors are directed to the site from an introductory phone message.
A simple form on a Web site can also help prequalify sales leads or potential employees. Although having a form with too many questions is not advisable, a questionnaire can include name, address, phone, e-mail and short query fields Such forms allow businesses to focus on their needs rather than spending time on administrative details. If retrieval of specific information is desired before speaking to prospects, "required fields" can also be created, preventing the form from being sent if the information has not been entered.