The Web For Business.com Blog

Internet marketing observations, perspectives, tips and tricks for your education and enlightenment.


It's not new, but it's worth repeating

Mark Kawabe - Friday, May 22, 2015

I recently came across a wonderful quote from Malcolm Gladwell, author of The Tipping Point, Blink, Outliers, What the Dog Saw and David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants.

"If my books appear to a reader to be oversimplified, then you shouldn't read them: you're not the audience!"

He knows who he's writing for. He understands who his target audience is. Do you do the same with your product and marketing?

It's easy to assume everyone's your target audience when you have something everyone could conceivably use. The reality though is that no two people are alike. Targeting "everyone" means you're wasting your efforts.

Take something as mundane as window cleaner. Mostly everyone in North America has a home or a car with windows, so everyone needs YOUR window cleaning solution, right?

Not so fast. There are many kinds of people, such as:

  • women,
  • men,
  • those who don't care if their windows are dirty,
  • those who would prefer a more environmentally-friendly alternative,
  • those who buy the stuff in bulk (and yours isn't sold in bulk),
  • those who only buy "the best stuff",
  • those who only buy the cheapest stuff,
  • those who prefer pretty scents,
  • those who prefer just the basic blue liquid,
  • and so on.

Not understanding who your product or service appeals to causes cascading problems for marketing. From design to content to context, you're flying blind. When you know who your ideal customer is, you're miles ahead of your competition who don't.

I know you've heard it before, but it's worth repeating. Know your audience. Create useful and informative stuff for them, and do it better than your competition. You'll come out ahead in the long run.

 

 

Where are you putting your efforts?

Mark Kawabe - Thursday, May 21, 2015

When you create good content, where should it go?

From my perspective, it should go on your website first. Once it's there, you can then work on marketing it further. This approach makes sense for many reasons.

CONTROL

Let's face it: you don't control Facebook. Google doesn't owe you anything. Putting your useful, pertinent, relevant content on your site is the easiest, surest way to build your online foundation. If Facebook shuts down your profile (either on purpose or by accident), your "satellite" content will take a hit, but your foundation will remain strong.

RELEVANCE & FRESHNESS

I'm sure you've heard that search engines value sites with good content. If you're putting your good content elsewhere, you're building someone else's website and not your own. Don't complain about your search engine positioning if you're not adding new, relevant content to your site.

EMPIRE BUILDING STARTS AT HOME

I've said it before but it's worth saying again: For most people, the value of social media is to amplify what you already have. There are companies that get the majority of their business on Facebook. That's great - for them. If you're not in that situation, I suggest it is more important to craft a compelling website that showcases your knowledge and builds your credibility. Your website should be the single source of all great information about you and your business so when people come calling from wherever they hail from online, they'll get a complete picture of what your company's all about and not a pale reflection of your social media presence.

It's really that "simple". Post useful content on your site as part of your blog. Then market the heck out of that content so lots of people learn about you. When they come to your site, have it be a good mix of design and content and calls to action. Keep at it consistently to generate leads and make sales.

If you have any questions or want to know more about any of the topics I've discussed here, please feel free to contact me. I promise to answer all pertinent questions!

 

 

Gettin' Out There - with Video!

Mark Kawabe - Monday, November 18, 2013

When I was starting out in business, I thought about getting a promotional video made. I quickly realized I'd never be able to afford it. At a cost of two thousand dollars for a two minute video, there was no way I could justify it. That was back in 1997, eight years before YouTube changed the game forever.

YouTube changed the video industry in two very important ways.

1) It democratized the distribution of videos. Anyone can upload a video and have it seen by millions. It's free to do this. Imagine what you would have had to do before to get your videos seen by millions before YouTube came along. People used to distribute business card sized CDs with videos. Remember those?

2) It lowered the quality threshold. If content was compelling enough, people will watch a video. The top 30 all-time watched videos on YouTube are mostly professionally-produced music videos from popular artists with huge fan bases. #5 is called "Charlie bit my finger - again!" and has been viewed 599,148,435 times (as of November 15, 2013). Don't ask me what's compelling about this . . .

Video engages people in a way that text can't. With a video of you, people see you, hear you and can see your body language. It's much more powerful than words on a screen. You don't have to be a movie star to make good videos. Just be you. With a little preparation, you can make an video that engages, entertains and builds rapport with your audience.

Also, notice I've added a video to this blog post. It says pretty much everything I wrote here, but it's in video. What will be remembered more? What are your thoughts on this? I'm curious, so please share your comments!