OK, building a website is so easy, even an Internet caveman could do it. (Do you know why that insurance company never had any cave women? It’s because no actress was willing to look that stupid on television…but I digress.) Building a good website – one that meets all of your marketing, lead generating, the information distributing and ideas that engage and excite – is just plain hard work.
Let’s look beyond the pretty pictures, the fancy banners and the splashy design and get down to cases. What really matters on your website? It’s all the stuff that has nothing to do with computers, the Internet, or graphics. Here are three questions you need to ask first when you plan your website.
WHY would my target audience want to visit my website?
What will bring them BACK?
What do I want them to DO?
Who Is The Target Audience?
Notice that only the third one is focused on what you want. Yes, even though that’s your company’s name at the top, your site is all about your customers. Now, remember in last week’s blog post about selecting keywords – you must remember, it was only last week – OK, I’ll remind you this once. We started plotting our keywords without resorting to the Internet. Meaning…understanding how real people search for your security services online. You need to do the same thing when planning your website.
Take a look at question number one. What does your security website have to do to draw potential customers? Some sites are simply for entertainment. Spend a casual hour or two or seven on YouTube and you’ll see that accomplished successfully. Start with a link to a cute puppy rolling around on the floor with a baby and before you know it, through the amazing magic of YouTube offering you another 17 videos that slightly resemble the one you were watching, you’ve moved through several episodes of “I Love Lucy,” and a series of funny German commercials and it’s four in the afternoon. This is not us. Think it through. No one visits a security company website for entertainment.
Other sites focus on providing resources for a community of like-minded people. That’s a tough one for security companies. We don’t want to be perceived as encouraging a community of the overprotective and paranoid. The average and appropriate response for security customers should be a “set it and forget it” approach. In other words, we take the worry away from them so they can pay attention to their business or their families, only coming back when it’s time for an upgrade.
Pro Tip: Security sites need to produce information that potential customers need and want. This should be timely, accurate, and easy to understand. You have to balance the tone between casual and serious. You want to explain why security matters while still not scaring them to pieces because of what you’re telling them.
So, let’s go back to our team of company specialists – your employees, particularly your sales force. Ask them the following:
- What questions crop up most often from potential and current customers?
- What insights lead customers to pay attention to your products and services?
- What facts generate a positive response to your company?
- What information gaps do customers generally have about your industry and your company?
- What information do potential clients care the most about?
- As an employee, what information do you wish you had to share with potential customers?
- Are there any stories, insights or ideas that generate enthusiasm from potential customers?
Look for repetition, surprises, and excitement in the answers. Hone this information down and you have the start of your landing page. Go through the same process with question number two above, “What will bring them back?” Then you have the content for at least the next few months of blogs and other updates.
What Do You Want Visitors To Do?
To complete the process, answer the final question, “What do we want them to do?” It may be that you want them to buy certain products online, use the “contact us” page to set up an appointment, subscribe to your blog or eNewsletter, or just add themselves to your email list. No matter what the answer, if you don’t know, you’re just going to confuse your potential customers, and if you confuse them too much they’ll find a site that doesn’t.
Surprise – you now have the basics for creating website content that works! That’s lesson one. 12,488 to go.
Don’t say I didn’t warn you. Need help? Contact us today.
Ignite Security Marketing is an inbound marketing agency that specializes in marketing and salesforce automation for the security industry. Since 2009, we have been the marketing partner of choice for SDM 100 corporations and SMB’s around the nation.
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