Whether you are developing a completely new business or giving your old website a face lift, you are probably just as concerned with marketing as you are with web development. After all, what is the point of having an amazing website if your target audience never sees it? Unfortunately, the waters of internet advertising are murky at best, and the popular trends tend to change more often than a teen updating their Facebook status.

From the ‘content is king,’ mentality to new Google search engine standards, how do you know what is worth investing your advertising dollars in?

Social Media

One of the more popular forms of advertising at the moment is through social media platforms, especially Facebook. However, as this video shows, spending the money to advertise on Facebook may inadvertently make your content less visible to those who are actually interested in your product.

You could switch to advertising on one of these Facebook alternatives, but you have to ask yourself whether ads or promoting your business related posts are actually the best solutions for your company.

Many Facebook users are already upset by the advertising on the site, and are willing to switch over to ad-free alternatives such as the new baby on the block, Ello. Do you really want to become just another annoyance to the people you are trying to impress?

On social media, content really is king, because the only foolproof way to reach your entire customer base is to post content that other users will share. Instead of paying to get more people to see your posts, focus on using social media to get your fans engaged on your direct pages. Instead of selling directly from your social media, utilize it as a way to get social and consider your conversion goal a subscription to your blog or newsletter.

Blogging and Newsletters

Of course, you can’t get subscribers to your blog or newsletter unless you have consistently compelling content. Many business owners don’t consider themselves bloggers. They either don’t have the time to write, or they are unsure of their writing skills. You shouldn’t let insecurities stop you from blogging though.

If you can, hire an in-house content and social media team. If that is beyond your budget, you might consider outsourcing parts of your blog. However, you should try to avoid these pitfalls:

  • Relying too heavily on guest blogging. What was once a way to improve the community in an industry while getting reliable links back to your source content, has become filled with spam and low-quality content. To do guest blogging right, make sure you trust your guests and that they have a legitimate following in your industry.
  • Losing your individual voice. If you are outsourcing your content and relying on ghost bloggers to speak for you, it is much more likely that your content will lack the consistency that makes people want to check in with your site regularly. Even if you are not the best writer, consider doing some posts yourself, and avoid ghosting under a single name with multiple writers.
  • Relying too heavily on SEO formulas. While SEO does work, to a certain extent, it is not the end-all to getting your site recognized. Writing your content for people, rather than search engines, will ensure that your content is evergreen and save you from having to overhaul your content strategy every time Google changes their search algorithms.

Ultimately, driving business to your website will always rely on elegant design, great functionality, and useful content. As the consumer world moves more permanently into the digital realm, there will be more and more people trying to sell you shortcuts on how to make your website stand out. While these solutions might work short term, the real answer is to always keep your human customer in mind and build your site, and advertising scheme, in ways that increase their overall engagement instead of trying to trick them.

 

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