Debate Marketing Sun, 15 Sep 2019 14:25:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Before you talk to a designer. Sun, 15 Sep 2019 14:25:00 +0000 Read MoreBefore you talk to a designer.]]> You really must give careful thought to what it is you want your website to do for you and for your website visitors. Until you have done this, you are at the mercy of any web designer’s whims and habits. You are also in danger of paying too much for your website at the beginning.

Before you talk to a designer…

You need to decide what it is you want your website to do, to achieve or to accomplish. You may not want to everything at first, but you need to have an overall plan so that what is created in the early stages will support things you might add later.

Show your products

One simple function of a website is to show people what you do, what you sell, what you create. Or you might be simply explaining what services you can offer and why people might make use of them.

You might be happy with that at the early stages, with potential customers being enthused by your ‘online brochure’ and emailing or telephoning you to take their enquiry further.

Explain what you do

Tell people about the services you offer, the additional aspects of your business that may not be immediately obvious from a newspaper advert for example.

Manage newsletter subscribers

Allow people to sign up to, or unsubscribe from, a newsletter about your organisation, your products.

This sort of thing must be run professionally to ensure that collected information is managed both ethically and legally.

Collect information

Collect survey information either anonymously or with contact details. Assemble basic information from a potential customer or member so that when you contact them you have the foundation information already in an organised format.

Sell products or services

You can sell your products through your website: using an e-commerce shop system. You might want to start with a low-cost, easily-managed system that can later be expanded to a fully-fledged shopping system.

Consider how you store your product or membership information already. A good web developer will work from that system rather than try to sell you an inappropriate ‘off-the-shelf’ system.

Beware: many web developers have arrangements with credit card payment providers whereby they receive a commission on every one of YOUR sales forever. Such people cannot be truly independent.

Provide after-sales information

Many web users will look for good quality after-sales information BEFORE they buy. If your manuals, instructions, return policies and general advice for use of or installation of products is good, customers will have greater faith in your products.

Offer free samples

You can offer free samples of products, free surveys or just some good examples of what you do.

Manage accommodation reservations

You can provide an online diary of availability either of you or of your product – holiday accommodation would be a good example.

Beware: some web developers will try to convert you to their ‘off-the-shelf’ system which may not suit you and may mean you have to change your own systems. A good web-developer will work from whatever system you already use.

Present an image gallery

You might want to offer a gallery of images of products, pictures of previous work. You might want to update this regularly or not very often.

Show people where you are

You might want to provide static or interactive maps for visitors to find you, your events, your work examples.

Provide a diary of events

You could display a diary of events where people can meet you and see you at shows or exhibitions. You might want to show people what’s going on locally or nationally and that is relevant to your business or organisation.

Collect basic pre-sales information

When you first speak to potential customers there is often a series of basic questions that need to be asked. Why not encourage them to provide this information online, in their own time, so that when you talk with them, you already have the basics and get straight into developing a ‘customer relationship’.

This can be done without people necessarily having to give personal information which can put them off.

Provide online quotations or estimates

Taking that process a step further, it may be possible to use your website to provide an initial estimate or quotation based on the basic information provided. Give visitors the choices, let them build up an estimate before they speak with you. Let them feel they have a stake in what is going on and that they are in control.

Take bookings

You could offer visitors the chance to actually book accommodation, book a survey visit, book a meeting time. Depending on the way you work this could be a definite booking or could be subject to you confirming by email or by telephone.

Something else?

These are just some of the simpler possibilities.

You need to think about:

  • what you want to achieve
  • what you can offer
  • what takes time at the moment and could save time if it was on your website
  • where do you want to start and where do you want to end up with a website

Above all…

Try to be clear about what you want. When you talk to a good web-developer you might see other possibilities but if you are clear before you start talking, you will have a clear basis with which to start. You will be less susceptible to being ‘dragooned’ into things that are not necessary.

Set the long-term targets, the medium-term targets and the short-term targets.

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3 Ways to Use Linked In For Lead Generation Wed, 28 Aug 2019 14:21:14 +0000 Read More3 Ways to Use Linked In For Lead Generation]]>


Is this you?

Many of you reading this will have a LinkedIn profile but haven’t really found much use for it, other than to connect with your colleagues and contacts.

Well, today’ the day you will learn some important tips on how to use LinkedIn for lead generation.  I discovered some helpful advice from David Gowel’s book, find my book review here > “The Power In A Link“.

#1 > LinkedIn People Search

This is a great place to start for salespeople, job seekers and business-to-business owners looking to get a foot in the door in large corporations.  You can search for a company using the top right search bar, then identify if you have any 1st or 2nd-degree connections at that company.

If you do, the next step it’s easy.

Ask for an introduction from the connection you have in common with the company, just make sure you have something of value to offer that will help develop your relationship with them.  No selling at first, relationship building is key.

To take this a step further, head over to the advanced people search feature by clicking the advanced button next to the search box.  The next screen that appears will give you various additional search options that enable you to dig down and find a detailed match.

#2 > LinkedIn Answers

This is probably one of the most useful but under-utilized tools on LinkedIn.  This is the place where many users go to ask questions about business and I bet there will be a section dedicated to your industry.

You are the one answering the questions, and by positioning yourself as an industry expert and answering questions consistently, other users will look to you for advice and potentially your services.

The users answer that get’s rated ‘best answer’ by the user who asked the question, will boost their expert status and will feature below the question in any given industry.  Your aim is to become an expert in your industry, with the benefit being of being featured as the industry expert on the answers section, increasing exposure to people who need your help who could be potential leads.

#3 > LinkedIn Groups

You may have already joined several groups on LinkedIn relating to your industry.  The trick here is to join groups outside your industry that might help you grow your business.   Hang our where your target market is and join in conversations that you can demonstrate your knowledge and skills, contributing and starting discussions at least once a week.

Also, take the time to read other peoples posts as you may be able to identify areas you can help them.  Connect to the ones you may be able to help and introduce yourself using the group you have joined as common ground.