Why do I need a website?

Do I need a website?

 

Welcome to the internet.

Marketing is different than it used to be.  Gone are the days of (what I call) ‘soapbox advertising’ where marketers stand on a box and yell out what they want people to hear and hope that people listen.  This worked when there were only a few people jumping up and down on soap boxes.  Less competition.

Newspaper ads, television ads, radio ads, billboards, big yellow books full of listings…these all work and have worked for a long time.  However it’s all more of the same.  All of these are just paid referrals to you…and everyone knows that.

Consumers know ‘how it works’.  They know that when they see an advertisement that the main point is that you want their money.  They know that your only interest in them is how much money they can give you.

“Well, I don’t feel that way, I just want people to know about what I have to offer…”

What we’re talking about here is a relationship.

Effective online marketing is all about building a relationship.  Ever heard of ‘Social Media’?  Consumers search online before they do anything first.  Online, you have the opportunity to build a relationship, build trust, educate, interact, share and more with a potential ‘client’ before they ever become one.  Building that trust is huge and can take time; but it’s so much easier to do online than standing on your roof yelling at the top of your lungs, hoping that someone hears.

You may not sell your product or service online, so why bother being there at all?

Any referral you ever receive, whether it’s word of mouth or a postcard or a radio commercial or…whatever…they are referrals.

re·fer·ral
rəˈfərəl/
noun
  1. an act of referring someone or something for consultation, review, or further action.

 

Q: What do you do when someone refers you to something that interests you?

 

A. Open the Yellow Pages

The first thing I do is go and find the Yellow Pages.  Then, I search for the name that I (hopefully) remember.  Dial the number and the extremely knowledgable and friendly person who picks up really enjoys the 15 different questions I ask and loves that fact that I’m not really interested in purchasing or starting a service…I just wanted information.  I think a 30 -45 minute phone call is a great use of my time.

B. Get in My Car and Drive

As soon as I hear something good, I grab my keys and start searching.  I mean, that TV commercial was SO good.  I have to get up from what I am doing and rush to find the store.  I mean, I know it’s 8:30 at night and they could be closed, but I have no other choice but to start driving around town.  How else could I possibly find out about what they can offer me?

C. Google It

This is what people do.

It may be to get contact information.  It may be to find the location.  It may be to just get more information on you.

What an opportunity!

If people are searching for what you have to offer, you need to be available.

Eighty-nine percent of consumers surveyed use Internet search engines to make purchasing decisions, punctuating the need for a strong search engine optimization (SEO) strategy. FleishmanHillard.com

Your online real estate is just as important as your physical real estate (in some cases…more so).

You can not be found if you are not there.  Water is wet.

I could talk about this for hours, but here is one last thing I wanted to share…Peter Visser wrote a post on BigMouthMarketing.com’s blog, giving 21 reasons on why you need a website…well worth a read.  My favorite is below:

 

 

Instant Credibility

Have you ever had difficulty making that sale? Or convincing someone that you are the real deal. By having a well structured website you can foster instant credibility with anyone. You can provide the ultimate proof that you are, in fact, the realest of all deals (couldn’t resist that phrase). Checkout the Other 20 Resons Peter Visser Gives

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