As with any new venture, there are plenty of things to learn when starting your first business website. We held a Facebook group competition recently where business owners shared the things they wished they had known before starting their website and we thought it may be of interest to you! If you are planning a new website or would like to update your existing one, here are some of the goodies to learn, from those already in the game.
I wish I knew more about social media – at 54 years old, it made for a VERY steep learning curve! The young folk of today just take this for granted but there’s a LOT to get your head around.
John – Ride The Talk
Social media is a great opportunity to network with potential customers, subscribers and supporters on a regular basis.
Your results will correlate with your willingness to get involved regularly. The best way to get to understand social media is to start to use it for social reasons, the benefit of this is a) you can become familiar with how people interact with the application socially and b) if you do find some interesting connections or re-connections it may make the whole process a lot more fun (which means you are more likely to stick with it!). Here are three basic social networks where you may wish to start:
1. Facebook = You + Friends + Family
Facebook makes it very easy to connect with people because, unless you have been living with wolves you probably know several people who are on Facebook too. Time after time I have seen people who have scorned Facebook get very excited when they found their best friend from high school, were contacted by someone who they had lost contact with for many years or realised that they were able to interact daily with family members overseas. There is an option to search your email address book to see who of your contacts are already on Facebook so that will give you a kick start.
Once you are familiar with Facebook for personal interactions peruse our articles on Facebook for business.
2. Linked In = You + Colleagues + Network + Acquaintances
Linked In is kind of like Facebook for acquaintances and old workmates. It allows you to network with and stay in touch with people you have met at a work or business level, and is more geared to the corporate sector.
To get savvy using Linked In for business, be sure to check out the Grassroots Linked In Group and read our articles.
3. Twitter = You + Everyone
The power of Twitter is your ability to network with people all over the world from all walks of life in 140 characters. You can search for who is talking about your industry and respond to them within minutes, you can follow the thoughts and actions of major people of interest and be the source of great useful information, recommendations for your potential customers.
To get the juice out of Twitter without wasting time and frustration check out the Twitter for Business E-book. We have collated everything you need to know to be successful using Twitter and this book is an invaluable Twitter resource.
I wish I knew how to get more subscriptions
John – Sober Paddy
This is one the keys to success on the internet, how do you get more people to subscribe on your website? The reality is that people will subscribe to your database for 2 main reasons:
1. Quality content and news
If your content or business offering is especially interesting, useful or entertaining, people will subscribe to receive more information. Consider how often you will post new content and how to make it accessible to your audience.
Offering something of value is a great way to build your subscriber base quickly. Whether it is an e-book, a ticket to an event, a webinar, a CD or a free session think about something you can give people that they can’t refuse. Make sure that what you give will attract the right kind of subscribers and market it far and wide; both on your website as well as through social media channels like Facebook and Twitter and don’t forget to email the offer to your existing database.
Which ever way you go, make sure you give people an easy subscription process (and a way to unsubscribe if they no longer wish to be on your list). There are several email marketing applications like Mailchimp, AWeber, Constant Contact that you can use to collect information, send emails and manage unsubscriptions. Alternatively you can have the functionality custom developed into your website.
We had several wishes from different website owners and we will respond to them all in the next few weeks, if you would like to participate in the Facebook Group and have your business wishes and internet marketing questions answered, join us there!