Six Things You Need To Know

First, thank you for showing interest in developing your web marketing department. I may throw a lot of things your way, but I’m trying to be honest and transparent. I wrote this as one of my onboarding articles to help manage expectations.

Many business owners are unfamiliar with digital marketing tools and practices. After all, you can’t hold in your hands what we’re building. We’re building non-physical, intangible online spaces with the goal of lead generation to grow your business. That’s a mouthful.

While there are many aspects of a complete marketing department, it can usually be paired down into two categories: inbound and outbound marketing. What you’re working with here are your inbound marketing strategies. These involve the online and organic side of things. It’s a no-brainer that people hang out and search online, so I don’t plan to teach this. You’re here because you already know that.

Marketing is the foundation of sales. While many business owners are focused on sales, they often look over how those sales come to be… how contacts and leads make their way into the business. In many cases, owners rely on or assume referrals and repeat business.

What came first the chicken or the egg? In this case:

  • Marketing creates contacts and leads,
  • You turn leads into projects and sales,
  • Sales means revenue and profits,
  • Revenue and profits means business growth, and
  • Marketing can also swing back through to help turn customers into repeat customers, starting the wheel over again.

But it doesn’t come without due diligence and hard work, like everything we do. More on these topics in future articles.

I use web marketing tools. You may be subject to engaging with reports of these tools. This may include:

  • Google Analytics to see how the website is performing.
  • Google Ads to check where your ad spend goes.
  • Interacting with Google MyBusiness apps on your phone.
  • Learning how to use a digital camera.
  • This list can go on…

These tools are now a small part of your job, but they can have a profound effect on business development. It’s my goal to make this simple, enjoyable and organized for you. Marketing is one of the more fun aspects of business! Together, we’re building something that you’re proud to put all over your fleet, shirts, online marketing, and offline collateral. We want something that you’re proud to send prospects to. People (customers, partners, competitors) compliment good marketing.

Again, I use almost all of the tools. But you may have to interact with and learn some of them as part of your regular processes and routines.

I’m always open to questions and happy to help edcuate.

Like a fine wine. It gets better with age.

A. It takes time to acquire the assets necessary to create and build a website.

Writing the most optimized text for search engines is a task in itself – for EVERY page. What’s an even more difficult task? Great imagery! For every page, the images need to best support and be relevant to the text. Every page is its own story. You may not have the images to support a specific page topic now. Either you didn’t take pictures before, or the service or project has yet to happen. I’ll chat more about the pictures later.

B. Your website’s age is one of many factors in Search Rank algorithms.

A new website is a massive undertaking, and you can expect to start at the bottom of the list with a new website. But there’s an investment here. We’re willing to start at the bottom because the new website will be all-around better, leading to organic rank in time. Google Ads is a great supplement to help your website appear at the top and bring more traffic to your website early on.

C. To evolve, you need data. Data takes time to collect.

How do we know what’s working (and what’s not) without measuring now and looking at historical data?

There is no such thing as cheating the system, and I have no tactics to support this. Half-assed marketing is noticeable. Remember, your sales prospects aren’t the only people looking at your website. Competitors are watching! Search engines robots are watching!

Great marketing is hard work and will take time to create, build, measure, evolve, and repeat. But we can have fun!

Note: Show your other departments where your marketing stands. What??

This is something I’ve experienced a lot and have worked hard with clients on. We all want a healthy work-life balance. We all have families, hobbies, personal obligations, and more. Relegating your marketing show it proper respect. After all, it’s a core foundation of your sales and the complete online face of your company.

I’m not saying marketing should always take priority but it should compete equally with your other departments for your time. Be open to penciling in some time for your marketing during business hours. It doesn’t always have to be the end of the day, at night, or on weekends.

As an investment, there are costs – my services as one of many examples. As with all investments, we expect them to grow over time and provide an ROI. I have seen it work wonders for many businesses over the years. I can’t promise and will never guarantee the same results, but I will do everything in my power to try.

You buy tools as an investment to make a task more time or cost-efficient, or because you can sell those services as a competitive advantage. I’m not much different than you. My fleet full of tools is on the computer and I work to acquire new tools to help clients like yourself.

I’m preaching to the choir when I say there are costs involved with business growth…

What are we looking for in your return on investment? A professional online-facing brand identity that generates leads.

Cell phone pictures are not good enough. This relates to the “investment”, “tools”, and “learning curve” topics. Your camera is a tool in your business and should be in your truck alongside all your other tools.

I’m not saying to go out and buy a $4,000 camera, but you can acquire a decent DSLR camera (with accessories) for $700-$1,200. Wait for holiday online deals. Ask for it as a gift for a birthday or holiday.

Why? Because you may need high-resolution pictures someday and you’ll be stuck with blurry or low-quality images while you’re trying to sell a high-profile job. I can tell you now that I will need high-resolution images for your website.

You can tell when a website is using cell phone pictures. I can show you an example because I’ve had to build them before. Those websites aren’t in my portfolio, but I can send you a link if you want to see them. Alternatively, I can show you examples of clients who go above and beyond for imagery. Check out Night Owl Landscape Lighting or Red Wing Kennels. Great images make websites and marketing much easier.

Do you know what’s extremely difficult to do? Recreate an event from the past. Snap away now and catalog the images in an organized photo library on your computer. You can always delete bad images, but it takes a lot more energy to:

  1. Recreate an event or revisit a project from the past.
  2. Find a close-up image of a very specific detail that you’re trying to explain.

I’ll talk more about pictures another time.

I just hope my thoughts are helpful, informative, and incite critical thinking.

Talk soon,

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