SUBJECT: Website and Blog Review
What is a Website?
A website is an owned vehicle that you control and is unique to your company. You may or may not create it yourself, but you control what is on the page and you may adjust according to business needs. According to our reading in week 3, “What is Earned, Owned and Paid Media?” owned media sites are an extension of our brand and create additional avenues for people to interact with us. The more the merrier, as long as we keep up with maintenance. With digital marketing, web properties also include a blog site. The advantage is that you control the content on the website and what you decide on for content needs to reach multiple purchasers. You may target 25-50 year olds, but you will also have the younger and the older market, because you sell a product that is not geared to just the 25-50 year olds. A disadvantage that I see for websites is the potential for only a one-time visitor, one who may click on a website once, not find anything attractive or interesting and leave and not return. Is the material outdated? Are you advertising Christmas and it is May? A website truly needs to be updated at least once a week, or more if the need arises. The more familiar you are with a computer, you will log on and search the web for information. According to several sites, the younger generation, aged 18-45, are the largest share of the population using both websites and blogging.
According to Forbes magazine, I have a website, now what? This article discusses ten proven ways to market your website and while originally written in 2012, there were many useful tips.
1. Search engine optimization.
2. Blogging and guest blogging.
3. Pay per click.
5. Facebook ads.
6. You Tube.
7. Email marketing.
8. Word of mouth (forums and Facebook fan pages).
9. Social Media.
10. Public Relations.
What is a blog?
A blog is defined as an updated website or web page, normally by an individual, and is written informally or in a conversational style, one person to another. A person could also blog as an online journal and have regular subscribers or followers. As a business owner, a personal blog about the products they sell and how the product may work in your life. Or a business owner may have a blog on someone else’s website and tie it in to their own website to pull viewers in. An advantage with digital media, there is no limit to what a person could do with a website or a blog. I happen to listen to several blogs, not so much about the company the person represents but how they inflect their daily life in with what they may be talking about. A blog makes us feel like we are a part of the business, and that can be positive when we are looking to buy a product from them. A disadvantage would be that not everyone knows there is a particular blog unless they are informed of it.
Forbes had an online article about blogging:
1. Write about things worth talking about.
2. Guest post on relevant sites.
3. Create a web of influence.
4. Tease the content with social media.
5. Don’t sell.
6. Keep your clients connected.
7. Provide relevance, News, and Thought Leadership.
8. Search engines optimize your blog posts.
9. Analyze your analytics.
10. Create info graphics.
When we look at the AIDA concept, websites get our attention by the messages sent out to the universe. We get your attention because we sell a product that you need to purchase and you are already interested because you are on our website. We need to fuel the desire fire so you either purchase a product online or you come in and buy. An additional sales opportunity is that you come in, look around and decide on an additional item to buy. A blog could work the same way, sending the message of AIDA, (Attention, Interest, Desire and Action). Disadvantages could be that not everyone is on a computer on a regular basis and choose not to use these ways of researching and buying products. With blogs, you have to know that it is out there for you to even read or listen to.
A website is designed to reach many target audiences, and will relay the same information to everyone that visits the website or blog. But not everyone will react in the same way. Some will research the subject on your website or what is discussed on your blog or will act right away because they trust the source. If you have a brick and mortar store, they will come in and look around, maybe once and purchase, or visit many times before they purchase. Some customers buy a pair of shoes and if they have buyer’s remorse later, not a big concern to them. But there are customers that will try on the shoes, go home and thing about it, try them on again and then maybe buy them. No two people are alike and their purchasing patterns are the same way. To first recognize that your audience is diverse and shop differently, your website message will reflect that fact. A website is something most people are familiar with and blogs are catching up in popularity. I feel that this is an effective way to advertise and reach the universe.
In Kent’s Camera Castle, the website needs to be updated and expanded on. The three cameras that are featured could have more information for viewers to digest. I have seen camera websites that have customer reviews for each of their cameras. The website appears to me to target the 25-50 year olds and I feel that it can be updated with color and graphics to better get the message across. The subject matter conveyed on the website targets someone who is somewhat comfortable using a camera. I would use the website and target the younger population and promote the Go Pro camera to encourage an interest in photography and graduate up to the more expensive cameras. And I would enlist a photographer who could supply a monthly column on a photography subject.
A blog by Kent himself would be a marketing angle also, because he can discuss many subjects when he talks about photography. He could be part of a photography class and blog about how to take better pictures so you do not have red eyes, or with the marketing of the selfie sticks, how you can safely take a selfie.
I feel websites are a sign of the future in advertising. You do not have to like the product but you like what it represents. In reading the Forbes article I mentioned earlier, I think the biggest misconception is that everyone uses it. I shop very little online and the sites I do use are for things that I may not want to drive to Madison for. I research what I am planning on purchasing and I enjoy looking at websites. I know of someone who does not rock climb, but she likes the websites. For this aspect, I chose the Budweiser website, because I do not drink beer and I only watch the Super Bowl for their ads. Unfortunately, you need to be 21 to even view the website.