If you’ve got it, flaunt it
Just because you build it, doesn’t mean they’ll come. New websites don’t promote themselves – people do. If you’re not getting the kind of traffic you expected, you’re probably not marketing the new site, or you’re relying on Uncle Henry to spread the word.
Big mistake. Killer landing pages, blogs with bells and whistles and fresh content don’t do any good if no one knows about your new site. Once the site is up and running, continue posting new content to engage visitors. Here are a few easy and cost-effective ways to get the word out to your current customers and prospects pre- and post-launch.
Before posting a new site
- Create a teaser for your existing site. Announce the new site is coming and when. List a couple of features that will build excitement.
- Send announcements to your email lists. Send a “coming soon” e-blast with a quick preview of the content that will appeal to each audience. If you don’t have targeted lists, send at least one general announcement to everyone. Remember to provide the Web address.
- Send a postcard to your current and prospective customers. Provide the address, the launch date and some of the new content to build buzz. Include a quick response (QR) code for smartphones that will link recipients to the site.
- Promote the new site using LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. Let your connections know the site is coming and when.
- Include a teaser article in your company’s newsletter. Whether you distribute a newsletter through email or mail printed copies, this is a great way to generate buzz.
Add value to your website
Create a blog. Adding a blog allows your company to lead industry discussions and share news about accomplishments, new products and more with your customers. Leading the discussion can give you an advantage over the competition. Posting to your blog regularly also helps your SEO.
Blogs give you the freedom to talk directly to your customers. Know your audience and write to them in a conversational tone. Here are some blog writing tips:
- Tell stories that affect customers.
- Highlight company achievements.
- Showcase new products and services.
- Assign individual names to each blog post so readers know who it’s coming from. There is nothing wrong with having a blog posted by (your company name), however.
- Use personal pronouns: I, me, you, your, etc.
- Change it up by adding a short video, animated graphic or slide show.
- Send an e-blast announcing each new post.
Add testimonials. Testimonials are great way to show potential customers how satisfied existing clients are. Make sure the content shows how the client benefited from your product or service. If possible, add a picture or video of the person sharing their experience to give the testimonial credibility.
Include employee biographies. After you’ve shown customers how great your products and services are, why not tell them how great your people are? When you add employee bios to your website, you give your company a human face. Including this information helps create a connection with customers before you even get them on the phone.
After posting a new site
- Include the website in your email signature. Tell people to visit your new site and include a link.
- Send announcements to your email lists. Follow up within a few days after go-live and encourage customers and prospects to visit the new site. Highlight areas on the site that will appeal to specific groups if you have targeted lists. Include a link to the site.
- Send a postcard announcing the site is live. Mail to customers and prospects, and provide a QR code that will take them there.
- Tease the site using social media. Announce the launch to your LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook connections. If you have a blog, be sure to promote it as well. Social media is a great place to learn what content is most relevant to your customers and prospects, and make changes as needed.
- Hold a contest to encourage people to visit the site. You can announce the contest on your blog and through LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. When possible, tie the prizes back to your business. For example, offer discounts on your services, a free lunch with the CEO or exclusive content, such as an e-book or white paper that addresses common problems customers have.
- Include a story in your company’s newsletter. Reiterate the site’s new features. Interview customers who are using the new site and include quotes from them about the new features and why they like them.
- Promote the site in online ads. Google, LinkedIn and Facebook are good places to start. The ads have increased in price recently, but they’re a great way to test traffic and adjust your site accordingly. Google, LinkedIn and Facebook offer rich analytics so that you can see who’s coming to your site, what they’re looking at, how long they’re sticking around, and what areas you need to improve.
- Create promotional items with the site address. Print your Web address on pens, nail files, hand sanitizer bottles, reusable grocery bags, flash drives and other giveaway items, and hand them out at trade shows, presentations and other events.
Last but not least
Be sure to track and measure your website traffic analytics before and after launching the new site so you can learn what’s working and what needs to be tweaked. You may need to adjust your strategy as you measure the results.