“If you build it, they will not come”
You finally got your big website designed, developed, and launched…all of a sudden everyone just knows about it, and starts clicking through all your pages, eating up all your information, purchasing all your products. You have the Magic Bullet! All your marketing goals achieved simply with having a newly launched, brand spankin’ new website!
Nope, sorry. Doesn’t work like that. What will? Foundational post-launch marketing. Here’s how:
1. EMAIL NEWSLETTERS
Target = current customers + potentials who registered for newsletter
This is ideal for your current customer base and those you have engaged with through your newsletter. You already have a relationship with them, some sort of past shared history, so you already have an element of trust established. With targeted email blasts, you can announce your new website to the people that have already shown a vested interest in you and/or your product. Make it catchy, make it appealing, and give them a reason to want to go to your site. And don’t forget to encourage them to share it with their friends.
If you have a site that’s been up for awhile and you want to re-incentivize people to visit, establish (and most importantly, update) a blog! Publish relevant content that is appealing to your customer base, essential knowledge that will establish you as a thought leader and on the forefront of your industry. Or, just anything new going on in your company that people might find interesting! Use this content in an email blast, and link back to the blog. Once they’re there, there’s a good chance they’ll stick around and check out the rest of your site.
2. SOCIAL MEDIA
Target = current customers + their friends
Everyone and their mother uses social media now. If you haven’t already, it’s time to take this seriously. You always want to be where your client base already is, and if they are there, then it’s time to stick your nose in too.
With that said, don’t make the single biggest error many companies make when entering the world of social media. DON’T SELL. Social media is about creating and strengthening real relationships, like in real life — it’s a two-sided conversation. Selling on social media is akin to standing and screaming in someone’s face, then turning around and running away. That would never happen in real life, so it shouldn’t happen on social media either.
What’s the key to balancing social media relationships and getting the word out on your brand? Giving users something they actually want, not something you WANT them to want. You determine how to best use your social media accounts, whether it be for customer service, updates on the latest news in your industry, notifications of great sales that you’re holding…any of these things could be enticing to your social media friends. But be transparent, always. Consumers will relate to you more on this platform if you are seen as a real company with real people, not some faceless corporation sending out PR memos to the masses.
- Tie social media posts back to blog posts on your website. Give an intro on social media that makes them want to click through and read the whole article.
- Post about special deals or new products, and give more information on your website that the user will click through to view.
3. DIGITAL ADS
Target = new customers
This is where you can sell. Buy digital media space so that your consumers will see ads for your brand while they surf the web. Then all they have to do is click over to your brand new websites! This will likely require that you enlist some professional help in the form of a media buyer, or a digital agency — so while digital ads don’t need to be overly expensive, there is typically a cost involved.
4. PRINT ADS
Target = dependent on method
Direct mailers, flyers, magazine ads, etc. — print ads of all types will reach an audience that digital ads may not. Visually appealing ads will catch a readers eye. It’s important to have a direct and prominent call to action on the piece, since the reader will have to take an extra step to translate from reading a print ad to viewing your website online. The added bonus of a print ad is it’s permanence: a reader may read it, lay it down, and see it again at a later time.
5. THE OBVIOUS MISS – PUT IT EVERYWHERE
It’s so easy to do, and so easy to forget. Put your new website URL everywhere! Every piece of marketing material that goes out the door should include your new website. Every. Single. Piece. Your business card, a new marketing brochure, company letterhead, even the return address on your envelopes. When people see your brand, they should know where to go online to find it — hammer it home with every marketing material you have.
6. TAKE IT A STEP FURTHER: PRE-LAUNCH MARKETING
Feel pretty confident about all those items? Then why not push it a little farther? If you have an idea of when you’ll be launching a new website, then send out some teasers. You can use any of the aforementioned methods, just tweak your message to fit. Pique the interest of current and potential clients so that they’re ready to check out your new website as soon as it’s launched!