Recently we were asked, “what is your favorite website?” We immediately thought, “ours of course!” While that truth does still stand we were inspired to really define our style.
While it’s very tempting with a new site to throw out a ton of flying text and graphics, you have to consider the end user. With so many obvious targeted ads online today, it’s important for customers to know without a doubt that you are a professional institution and not a pop up ad. That is why first I believe in cleanliness. Next, do not confuse clean and simple for unsophisticated. We've come a long way from old school flash sites and there’s no reason your site can’t be clean and fancy. Last let’s talk functionality. What is the point of being on the world wide web if you’re not going to share information? Think, “what will my customer want or need to know about my service or product?”
We came across an article by Avinash Kaushik, “7 Incredible Web Design, Branding, Digital Marketing Experiences,” that highlighted some really impressive stylish sites. Here are our top 3:
- Shopbop - Luxury eCommerce where the product takes center stage.
- Innocent - Making complex health food recipes look easy and playful.
- Method - Brand awareness you can feel.
The same stylistic rules can be applied to your e-mail marketing campaigns. We are big fans of Mail Chimp where you can use pre-made templates or even use a drag-drop editor to create your own templates. Either is fine, but try not to send out your entire business plan. Remember online viewers don’t like to scroll too far for information. E-mail viewers also like consistency; an easy way to make sure you have a consistent newsletter is to pre-schedule your campaigns weekly, monthly, quarterly, etc. When it comes to e-mail newsletters getting subscriptions is also big deal. Mail Chimp won’t even let you blast e-mails unless your readers have subscribed. When asking for subscriptions remember to ask, “what does my subscriber get in exchange for their e-mail?” (Their “get” can be information, exclusive invites, coupons, etc.)
The last bit of simple sexiness I want to chat about is Facebook Advertising. We actually got a call from Facebook in regards to placing an ad due to our recent heavy page traffic and were pleased to see how affordable it is. I was able to set a daily dollar limit, as well as an overall account limit. We've rarely needed to expand or even meet that budget. For example, a daily limit of $10 does not mean all $10 will get spent. As always the insights available on Facebook are nifty - we can see impressions (number of times we’re on screen) vs clicks, and can even target small biz owners in the 78130.
We are currently running 2 types of ads:
- Likes Sidebar Ad
- Likes Sponsored Story Ad