Employee Advocacy On Social Media

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Employee Advocacy on Social Media

Employee Advocacy = Social Gold

Quiz: Employees of our company like working there because:
a) They are respected
b) They are doing fulfilling work
c) They are part of a great team
d) They are compensated fairly
e) They are afforded the opportunity to improve their skills
f) All of the above

If the answer is “f”, firstly, congratulations and secondly you could be sitting on more than just good workers.

Just a few short years ago employers tried to block employees from going on to social networks during work hours – internet monitoring, site blockers, firewalls, using Julie from accounts as a spy/mole, setting up elaborate false flag operations, propaganda… wait a sec… where was I… oh yes…
Hopefully you are hiring employees that are (a) autonomous enough that they can be trusted to do their jobs but (b), and more importantly, social media can be a friend in the employer/employee hand book.

Your team are proud to be part of your organisation and usually are willing participants in spreading the good word – which is the basis of an Employee Advocacy Program (EAP).

An EAP is an effective (and cheap) way to cast your net wider after you have went to the effort of creating content a bigger audience is always welcome.

It can be as simple as “Hey Jo, can you paste this article on the FaceBook for me?”*

*Pro tip: If you are using terms like paste and the FaceBook there is a good chance that Jo’s social reach is further than your own.

OR

like the rest of your marketing and sales strategy you can have a considered approach to employee advocacy and really engender ownership of the brand amongst employees.

I shouldn’t need to say this but do not enforce employee participation a) because you can’t and b) this process will hopefully lead to follow ups and that same disaffected employee will probably be the first point of contact for someone reacting to their share.

Have some guidelines
Didn’t he just say cast a wide net and now we have to have guidelines?
In the beginning have a mentor for the employees that want to help out can be a great benefit – train them in what is an appropriate tag to the share; your mentors should give pointers into where, when and how often as well.

Bonus
Your employees will want to give their networks special content as well, do not stifle it – whether it is a bespoke piece of content or a special offer – have at it.

Software
Proving ROI on an employee advocacy program can be hard but there are many programs that can make your life easier from the big boys to more niche products like, Trapit (formerly Addvocate) or Circulate.it for example.

Goals
So the above will help with proving the ROI but what are your goals for the program? Be sure to have a clear KPI and be ready to move the goal posts or content around as you learn to understand your new audiences – their likes and dislikes.

This should set you on the right track but if you need more guidance on this or other social marketing ideas drop us a line – info@remembercreative.com

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4 questions to start you on your social media journey

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The 4 questions businesses should ask before starting social media

Social Media: Where do I start?

Starting a social media strategy for your business can be a daunting prospect. After all, there’s a stack of information out there – much of it written in jargon or going into intricate detail about things that really aren’t that important.

So if information overload means you’re struggling to know where to start, you’re not alone. That’s why we created a simple guide to the 4 questions you need to ask before you start using social media.

Answer these and you’ll have a pretty good idea of the way forward for your business.

Which platform should you use?

There’s no point trying to master every platform. You usually won’t have the time or budget to do it all and you’ll end up spreading yourself way too thin.

Instead, think about the purpose of your content and who you’re trying to connect with.

Facebook is the biggest social media platform in Australia – over 60% of Australians have an active account. It’s focus is largely personal but it can be a great platform for any business: especially if you have a consumer focus or you can create content that people engage with and are happy to share with their friends.

LinkedIn is often seen as the corporate facing social media platform and is a natural fit for B2B businesses such as professional services. But that doesn’t mean it’s not a place to find new clients for B2C businesses too.

Instagram is highly visual. If you’re prepared to invest in top notch imagery it can be a perfect fit. Insta has been used to devastating effect by many lifestyle brands, which lend themselves to this kind of “picture is worth a thousand words” marketing.

Twitter has over 2.8million active users but it’s a tough one to master and requires almost constant attention. Some businesses use it well but it’s not for the time poor.

Snapchat is the young’un of the group, quite literally. It has the youngest user base and can be particularly useful if your target audience is under 30.

Pinterest may not be as popular in Australia as it is in other countries but its users tend to be more engaged and it has the highest percentage of online shoppers out of the platforms. It also skews female” around two-thirds of Pinterest users are women, again the highest of all platforms.

The right platform for you will depend on who you’re targeting. And, just because the majority of users on a platform like Pintrest are women, that doesn’t mean they can’t also be used with devastating effect to target men too.

How often should you post?

This is something of a loaded question. You don’t want to bore your audience by bombarding them with constant content. But you don’t want them to forget about you either. Getting the balance right usually involves trial and error and a bit of tweaking until you find out what works best for you.

We know it’s not perfect but the answer to “how often” might just be as much as your time allows as it you might only find an hour a week to squeeze in.

That said, spending just one hour a week on social media is probably not enough to really engage an audience. Which leads to the next question you should ask…

How will you find the time?

Most people – especially most SME owners – simply don’t time necessary to spend hours a week learning how to use a platforms, run campaigns, create engaging content and build an audience.

There are some tools that will help you reduce the time burden by scheduling all you posts from one place – some of the best are Sproutsocial, Hootsuite and Buffer. (For the record, we use Hootsuite but they all have their place.)

But then then there’s the little things you need to know, such as the fact that some social media platforms actually image doesn’t show a face.

For that reason, we think the best solution for most businesses is to save time, save money and get it done right by outsourcing it.

Do you really have to understand all those terms?

You’ve probably noticed that social media is a world of acronyms and jargon. You probably don’t need to know what most of them mean. But there are a few you should probably be aware of (not least because you’ll hear your agency bandying them about all the time). So, for the record, here they are:

CTA – Call to action. This is the next step you want someone to take after reading your content.

CPC – Cost per click. How much you need to spend for every person who clicks on a link to your site.

CTR – Click through rate. The number of people who click through to your site divided by the total number of people who see/read your post.

B2C – Business to consumer. Marketing to the masses.

And finally…

If you’re struggling to create a social strategy that is right for your business, or if you can’t find the time or don’t have the skills to create the kind of content your audience wants, drop us a line.

Get in touch to find out more.

Statistics compiled by SocialMediaNews.com.au for August 2016.

Stats and research courtesy: Vivid Social. Figures correct as of 31/08/16.

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What can a personal website do for you?

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What can a personal website do for you?

Most of us know the benefits of a company website. They’ve become our first port of call for checking out what that organisation offers; we use it to find out what they do and how they do it differently. We compare that business with its competitors and see whether we want to buy from them or not.

From the business’s point of view this is fantastic – not least because their website lets them control the message you’re getting about them. Sure, you can google them and find out reviews and try to track down people who’ve had a positive or negative experience. But if they do it well, give you the right experience and make it easy to buy, they may be able to convince you that they’re the one to go with – then and there.

Guess what, all these same benefits apply to a personal website too. If you’re in the market for a job, if you’re looking to grow your profile, or even if you’re after a promotion or pay rise, a personal website can be gold. After all….

You are not a company

Consider this… the average length of time that someone stays in a job in the United States is now just 4.6 years. In Australia, it’s probably not much different. That means, statistically, you’re unlikely to be with your current employer for that much longer.

So, if you’re hitching your mast to your employer’s, hiding your skills behind their branding and letting their website and positioning in the marketplace sell your skills and expertise, you’re doing yourself a disservice.

If you’re in any kind of services industry – such as real estate, law, financial advice, accounting – that’s probably obvious enough. That’s because you, as the professional, really are what brings value to the business, Everyone already knows that. Without your knowledge, experience and networks the business wouldn’t be able to survive. So the need to position yourself properly if you’re ever going to build a career is obvious.

Another group for whom a personal website is a no-brainer is franchisees. Often the franchisor will only do so much for your marketing and branding. A more personal touch that speaks directly to your clients or customers and speaks to your individual market can work wonders.

But it’s broader than that

Because, while professional services and franchises are the most obvious examples of where this problem lies, I don’t think they’re the only ones who could do with a personal website. No matter what line of work you’re in, a personal website will let you speak to future employers, clients and others in a way that’s just not possible through other means.
In the creative industries, designers, art directors and copywriters have been doing this for years: having their own room to show a portfolio of their work: ad campaigns they’ve worked on or ideas they’ve developed.

When it comes time for a pay rise, when they’re considering moving on, when a business is out there looking to headhunt, this is what they can point to and what states their case.

Why shouldn’t people in other industries take a leaf from our book and build their own online portfolio of work too, in the form of a website?

Isn’t that what LinkedIn is for?

I can hear the response already… I already do that, it’s called LinkedIn.

Well, yes and no.

Sure, Linkedin is great if you want to display what you can offer in a format that’s built around a CV. But really, can a CV show off all your talents and achievements and position you the right way? I don’t think so.

It’s also built around words, and while there’s now the ability to stick up a video to support what your content, even that’s a bit limiting and one-dimensional. There’s not really much scope for story-telling or narrative.

But there’s even more to it than that…

We’re not rational

Like it or not, we don’t always connect with things rationally, and LinkedIn provides little scope to do anything but that. It’s formulaic. There’s little scope to ‘show’ rather than ‘tell’ and there’s very little room to engage people with anything other than a brief summary of who we are and the projects we’ve worked on.

I think it’s pretty hard to get a full sense of who someone is and what they do just through a LinkedIn profile.

Besides, most of us aren’t solely word-based people. We like visuals, we like colour and we connect with information on many levels. Unlike LinkedIn, a personal website lets you:

  • Use visuals to reinforce your message
  • Give people a three-dimensional experience
  • Show off your projects in a way LinkedIn simply can’t
  • Use SEO keywords to drive people to your site
  • Connect with people emotionally, not just rationally
  • Be as creative as you want to be without having to worry about templates
  • Become a publisher and drive people to your site with high-quality content
  • Emphasise whatever you want and provide whatever experience you want.

You’ve taken time to build your relationships

And it’s often your skills that your business’s clients or customers are benefiting from. A personal website can let you take advantage of that, giving you repository for all your experience that’s transportable, rebrandable and lets you maintain a relationship with your clients regardless of where you end up.

It also lets you position yourself the way you want, not the way a social media platform tells you to. Who could resist that?

Get in touch if you’d like to discuss how a personal website can help you.

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Furthering your campaign online…baaa

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Only in art will the lion lie down with the lamb

If you haven’t seen the new lamb ad already – the jury is out and the verdict is in – it’s great. We recently did a piece on an advertisement by OAK flavoured milk and it raising the blood pressures of vegans everywhere by its, unknowingly or not, slightly offensive flavour humour.

Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) has gone the exact opposite route for their Spring 2016 advertising campaign and included as many differing segments of society as one thought possible in a 30 second ad spot.

Absent in this very inclusive advertisement are vegans and vegetarians for obvious reasons, but the notion that lamb doesn’t discriminate is touted loudly and proudly. It’s a great advertisement with humour and sensitivity in equal measure.The other big difference is the story, OAK hasn’t evolved the piece where as MLA have peeled back the layers and engaged viewers again when they move online as the 30 secs is now a more in-depth 90 second look at Lamb. The meat that doesn’t discriminate.

Contact us today to talk about creating engaging content that resonates with your customers.

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Is HungryThirsty dead meat? Vegans out for blood

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Is HungryThirsty dead meat?

We have seen a couple of interesting advertisements hit the scene in the past couple of weeks one very inclusive read more on that here; and one a very exclusive advertisement for OAK Milk and there once heralded HungryThirsty catchphrase.

If you haven’t seen it yet you scrolled very quickly when landing on this page – scroll back up… go on… I’ll wait.

By exclusive I did not mean fashionable or private I mean exclusionary – as you can see OAK decided to take on vegan sausages, apparently a sensitive subject.

Many vegans were up in arms with the tawdry treatment launching very vocal attacks on social media. I, for one, think the advertisement is ok (I live with a vegan, I am not sure if that qualifies me on any level, and just by writing this I run the risk of sleeping on our non leather couch tonight) but I think it would be shortsighted of OAK and their agency if they didn’t think they would receive any backlash.

On one level they are making fun of a food item and not vegans in general – so that’s ok with me. And on another level, vegans don’t drink milk so to offend a group that will never be your customer, at least for the bottom line, is ok as well. That’s not to say that we condone offending people as a way to some quick PR.

I would say that the sort of person that is impressed with the ad is also the sort of person that will be happy that those pallid, bleeding heart vegans were offended. Oh god, now I might be raising the ire of the erudite, milk drinking, OAK loving masses by suggesting that they would be uncouth enough to enjoy riling up a bunch of vegans.

The point is the ad is fine, it speaks to it’s target market succinctly. OAK’s reaction however is another thing. Since releasing the ad OAK hasn’t made any comments on their accounts or to the media as far as this person can tell; which makes me think they were not ready for the reaction and not agile enough to react accordingly.

They could have heeded their naysayers words and kept the conversation going while still in the limelight or they could have upped the ante and started offending other groups, perhaps white supremacists didn’t realise that HungryThirsty is satisfied much better by milk that comes from black or brown cows than white cows.

The opposite of an exclusionary tactic is inclusive the new lamb ad is a brilliant example.

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7 things SMEs/small businesses need to know about social media

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7 things SMEs/small businesses need to know about social media

For small and medium-sized businesses, social media has the potential to bring so many benefits. Done well, it can build deeper relationships, keeps you front of mind with potential buyers and shows off your products and services in a way that no other medium can match.

Done very well, it can even build a community of enthusiastic brand advocates who will willingly spread the word about what you’ re doing – an army of salespeople willing to spruik on your behalf. But if you’re hoping social media will take your business to these dizzy marketing heights, there’ s a few things you should know first.

SMEs must use social media as part of something bigger

Small business owners are usually doers. So, true to form, when it dawns on them that they should ‘ be doing social media’ , they take the expression at face value and just do it. They open a twitter account, start a Facebook page and then begin posting about whatever comes into their heads. It’s the wrong approach entirely.

To work effectively, your business’s social media needs a strategy behind it. And that social media strategy must be tied to your business strategy. If it’s not, your social media efforts will be scattered and inconsistent. You’ ll be sending out the wrong signals or sending people down the wrong path and, ultimately, your social media will do your business more harm than good.

We can show you some pretty good examples of where this happens. Then again, we probably don’t need to. You’ve no doubt quite a few yourselves. And yet, many business owners still think that just by turning up they’re “doing social media”.

SMEs need to know that social media is a regular thing

Some small business owners will do one mailout or post one article to social media, then sit back and expect the world to change. It won’ t.

Very rarely something you do on social media might ‘ go viral’ , moving well beyond your immediate circle of followers and customers to get shared and talked about by people you never dreamed of reaching. But more often than not, building this kind of audience takes time, application and trial and error. Social media is marathon – or at least a middle distance race – not a sprint.

SMEs need to be comfortable with ambiguity

The way television, radio or print advertising works is reasonably immediate. A business pays for the ad, the ad goes out, and then hopes this is followed by an immediate spike in enquiries or sales. Social media is a little more ambiguous. It can take time to see a return on investment, at least several months. And, when a sale comes in, it can also be hard to know exactly what role social media played in it all. That’ s why….

SMEs need to keep doing other things

Social media is not enough on its own. Although some rare businesses may have achieved all their business goals with nothing more than a facebook account, that’ s very much the exception, not the rule.

Most businesses still need to invest in other marketing tactics, such as a web presence, seminars, advertising, good old fashioned networking and PR. In fact, the final one of these methods and the traditional media coverage it can being can be the best of all complements to effective social media.

Regardless, what social media can do is to amplify each of these old school marketing tactics, giving you the chance to give people the full story in a slow and more interactive way. That means, when they do come to you through another touch point they are likely to know a lot about what you do and how you do it. And that knowledge builds a level of familiarity and trust, that makes them much more likely to buy.

SMEs need to put themselves out there on social media

Social media, by its very nature, is uncontrollable and somewhat anarchic. That alone is enough to put many SME owners off investing too much into it. What happens if you get a bad comment? Or if you put forward a point of view that doesn’t’ t go down well? What happens if people start complaining on your social media pages?

It’s true that social media gives someone who has an issue with your business a ready forum in which to air their grievances. But, while negative social media can and does happen, it’s probably not as common as you might think.

And, even if someone does complain there can often be a positive side to using social media. For starters, you get to better understand the grievances of your customer and make sure it doesn’t happen again. In that sense, it can offer a unique forum for listening. Better still, social media gives you the opportunity to respond.

In other words, people get to see two sides of an argument – they don’ t just have to take the dissatisfied customer’ s word for it.

SMEs need to demonstrate personality through social media

While we’ re on the subject of risk management, it can be tempting to play social media safe so that you avoid stirring the pot too much. But, if you do, you’ ll run a much greater risk: the risk of failing to cut through and therefore talking to no one but yourself. Doing social media in a way that attracts followers and builds an audience, means doing it with personality. It means being strong and confident and unafraid to speak your mind. Only then can you hope to give people a glimpse into who you are, what you do, and how you do it differently to anyone else.

This is your chance for your BRAND to express itself and define its unique position in a loud and busy marketplace

SMEs need to be prepared to invest in social media

Finally, social media can be a very cost-effective form of marketing, but there’ s a difference between being cost-effective and being free. And, like any form of marketing or advertising, those willing to invest in quality will almost always see better returns. So be prepared to invest in quality. Don’t try to cut corners. And don’ get one of the manager’s 17 year old to do it on the cheap – especially if you’ re not targeting 17 year olds.

And finally…

We’ve been around this space for some time. And can confirm that social media doesn’t just give small businesses anxiety. Even the biggest companies debate endlessly about the risks and return of an environment that opens them up to criticism and isn’t necessarily a forum for direct sales.

But what we can say for sure is that social media genuinely has the power to transform both your marketing efforts and your business and bring an almost unique opportunity to broaden the reach of your brand.

That’s why we love to talk to business owners exploring this space and doing it properly. After all, to do social is easy – to do it well and get the most out of it you really do need to be strategic, considered and bold.

Remember Creative can help you be all three.

Get in touch to find out more.

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A digital creative’s shocking admission about social media

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A digital creative’s shocking admission about social media

Why I hate social media

The problem with social media

For a digital creative I’m about to admit something quite shocking…

I don’t like social media. In fact, I hate it.

Sure, I have a social media account on every single platform under the Sun. And I check in with them all the time. (Just ask my wife how much.) But no matter what platform I’m on – Facebook, LinkedIn, Pintrest, snapchat or Insta – I find the same thing keeps on happening.

All day long boring content bombards me that I simply don’t want to read.

I get no relief when I turn to my email inbox. In fact, it’s exactly the same thing. Business email after business email that fails to engage me and just sits there, clogging up dark, unread lines on my screen until I do the honourable thing and send it straight to trash.

I rarely, if ever, bother opening, let alone reading anything I receive from any business these days. Instead, I’m more inclined to euthanase a day en masse, checking the box beside each message before clicking ‘Delete all’.

So why do I bother?

But despite my hatred, I can’t bring myself to unsubscribe, to unfollow, to unlike, to un-engage. And the reason for this is simple.

I have a real fear of missing out.

I’m hoping, praying, that the brands I’m connected with will give me what I want. And sometimes – some rare times – I’m rewarded.

Every now and then, in amongst the hate and the blandness and the irrelevance, there’s an occasional piece of gold. Once in a blue moon I get an email, or I find a tweet, or I read a post that changes everything.

I don’t want to miss that next gem if, and when, it ever happens. So my FOMO keeps me hanging on.

Aren’t you a little bit like me?

I suspect many of you are just like me. You’re hoping that the businesses you want to engage with will engage with you – either that or you simply can’t be bothered casting them from your life by clicking unsubscribe. (I know that apathy plays a part in low unsubscribe rates but doesn’t can’t explain everything. )

The problem is that most businesses – and pretty much all SMEs – just aren’t capable of giving us the attention we crave.

But that’s not social media’s fault

You see, the reason I hate social media is not social media’s fault. It’s the fault of the businesses using it.

They’ve taken to their platform only because they think they should. They have no strategy, no plan, no idea of what they’re doing. They just post whatever comes into their heads.

They’ve treated it as a one way transaction. They’ve taken no time to think of what I want to see or read, just what they wanted to tell me.

But social media isn’t about broadcasting. It’s about building a community and involving it in your brand’s point of view. The challenge is not in talking about your products – anyone can do that. It’s about building a content experience that draws in users and gets them to fall in love with your brand.

It’s about moving beyond a simple product message and creating an experience.

 

What makes a business good at social media?

The rare bits of social media I don’t hate – the brands and businesses I’m happy to hear from – share some things in common.

They’re consistent but not pushy.

They’ve taken time to know who I am.

They’re happy to be spoken to, as well as spoken about.

They’ve got personality.

They’ve got flair.

But getting these things right means having a strategy and developing in proper content (both design and words).

It means watching what you’re doing and refining it as you go. It means making sure all parts of your marketing are working properly and everything’s working together to enhance your brand.

It means making a proper investment both in time and money.

Stop now if you don’t want to be one of them

Now here’s a test…

Imagine for one second that you didn’t work for your company and the social message you just sent out appeared in your feed. Would you read it?

The answer could well be no. For instance, it might well be irrelevant or unoriginal. It might lack personality. It might not be very interesting or valuable

If that’s the case with your social media efforts, stop now. Don’t go any further. Your efforts will be half-baked. You’ll make me hate social media even more.

But get it right and you’ll make a difference – not just to me but to your bottom line.

Because the reason I hate social media so much is your greatest reason to use it. What’s out there is usually not very good.

 

In other words, the market is open for you to get into the space and own it, stifling your competitors’ voices and gathering new followers, new customers and new clients as you do.

What kind of business could resist investing in that?

Just make sure you do it properly, or don’t do it at all.

 

And finally?

If you liked this or hated it, get in touch

After all, this is my very point. I posted this because I am keen to know how you feel. How my thoughts made you feel….

This is a conversation, Remember!

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7 things you didn’t know your website could do

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7 things you didn’t know your website could do

7 things you didn’t know your website could do

A lot of businesses still use their website as though it’s nothing more than a 21st-century version of the white pages: a place where potential customers or clients can go to find their address or phone number – and perhaps learn a little about what they do.

But if you still think that way, you’re really missing out. Because these days your website can – and should – be about so much more.

So here are 7 things that you may not know your website can do…

1. Be the centre of your marketing efforts

As a former Creative Director in the big wide world of advertising agency land, it pains me to say this, but I will anyway…. Advertising, at least the way so many business owners once knew it, is in its death throes.

What’s replacing it is all these new whizz bang digital forms of marketing, you hear about – content marketing, social media marketing, CPC and SEO marketing.

But the way they work is by sending people to your website.

So what do people see when they find you? Is it something that Something that positions you properly, giving them the message you want them to hear and the experience you want them to take away.

And how about the people who visit your site off their own bat or based on a recommendation? (After all, virtually no one picks up the phone anymore without first checking you out digitally.)

Forget how you dress in the office or your pretty packaging, your website is your digital first impression. And, it’s also where all your marketing efforts begin. That means every campaign you launch, every email you send, every social media post you make, should always take account of your website.

2. Capture data

Speaking of which, one of the most effective ways to use your website as a marketing platform is by using it to build long-term relationships. And the first step in doing that is to capture the details of people visiting your website.

Get enough names, email address or phone numbers and you’ll give yourself a ready-made market of warm leads to launch new products and deals to, to send your eNewsletters to and to otherwise nurture until they become buyers.

But, again, you have to do it right.

People want a value exchange, so if you’re asking for an email address be prepared to give away something – such as a whitepaper or detailed article – in return. This can be a powerful way to build rapport and remain in the customer’s mind while they assess their options.

But, remember, this of itself going to make you unique.

You also need to make sure whatever you’re providing is memorable, relevant and useful. And, most importantly, it needs to be based on your own insights into how a customer will benefit from your knowledge, your products and your services.

3. Pre-qualify your leads

In my experience, a lot of businesses waste a lot of time trying to sort the wheat from the chaff when it comes to enquiries. But a good website does that job for you. With the right content and user experience (UX) strategy, a website will help you filter customers before you invest time in them.

By using clever site design you can help make sure that, by the time someone gets around to making their buying decision, they already know they want from you. And, by combining that design with analytics and data that shows how people behave on your site, it can also give you a much clearer idea of how to best service their needs.

4. Provide better customer service

Any purchase has two distinct journeys: one before the sale is made and one after. A great website is there for both.

We’ve already mentioned how a great web experience can streamline your pre-sales (or even sales) delivery. When it comes to the after-sales experience your site has a role to play too.

For instance, your website should be set up to deal with the most common types of queries, issues or complaints you receive. By including practical help in a help or support section, you’ll avoid having to spend money and labour answering routine calls.

But the best websites go further, providing a portal to customer service or support that makes the process more efficient and gives them everything they need quickly. This could be a simple FAQ section, a download section for supporting documents or even a live chat capability.

Again, it’s about improving efficiency when you deal with your customers so that you save time, money and a lot of headaches.

5. Give you another staff member

When you really get your website helping your business it can become another staff member – one who works 24 hours a day/7 days a week and has an almost unlimited capacity to get the job done. To put this into perspective, how much would you pay a year to have someone do your admin, follow up customers and answer most queries that come through the door? How about things like analysing data and alerting you to changes in buyer behaviour or interacting with your brand – tasks which you’d usually have to pay a reasonably senior employee to do?

Well, after your initial investment your website will start to do all of these things and more, virtually for free.

6. Make your business more efficient

If you think of your website as something that only offers external visitors an experience, think again. Your website can play a central role in streamlining your business processes, linking disparate parts of your organisation together and getting your organisation collaborating. Currently use different systems for ordering or booking system, CRM, customer service software and dispatching? Your website can replace the lot.

Contact me if you want a real life example of how we did just this for one client. Their new website didn’t just improve sales, it improved the exponentially.

It did this by freeing up staff to focus on product planning, giving them time to refine their offering and release new products.

7. Become your best referrer

When all of these things come together, your website will position you well, show people how you help, provide great customer service and give you a more efficient business. And when that happens, guess what? People will start telling others about it too.

You’ll get more people visiting your site more regularly, more people signing up to your mailing lists, more people reading what you have to say or watching the videos you’re producing.

That ultimately, should also lead to more business….and that’s the point.

After all, a website isn’t a static thing you have simply because everyone has one. Done properly, it’s both a strategic asset and living, breathing member of your team.

So… how many of these things does your website currently do?

And, if you’d like it to do more of them, get in touch.

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Written By: Michael Menzies

What is “Look and Feel” of a website exactly?

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“LOOK AND FEEL” OF THE WEBSITE

“Look and Feel” of a Website

This month, we finished the development of another of our clients’ website, this time a great law firm in New Zealand, Lowndeslaw.com. A lot of thought and ideation goes on behind the scenes before we can achieve something as beautiful as this website. One area of this includes – the “look and feel” design stage.

But what is the “look and feel”? And how do we as a team, successfully accomplish this phase?

Let us break it down for you:
What is the “Look and Feel” of a Website?

In layman’s terms, the “look and feel” of a website is the initial design (not development) of a website which give you, the client a visual of how the entire website will look before it is developed.

The “look” is defined by the following components of your website:

  • Colour palette
  • Imagery
  • Layout
  • Font styles and choices
  • Overall styling & spacing

The “feel” is determined by these characteristics:

  • The movement and dynamic components like dropdown menus, buttons, forms, portfolios, galleries, testimonials,
  • Video
  • Responsiveness (for media devices including Ipad + tablet)

Why is the Look and Feel phase of a Website Important?

Your website’s overall look and feel is important because it instantly draws a picture of you to your clients before they even start reading the content of the site.

Before you begin a website design, check your goals against your competitors’ websites (this is called research). A lawyers website should look trustworthy, organised, well versed and offer a list of services, advice and clear contact details. Whereas a website for a fashion designer can be more creative with bright colours, texture and use emotive images.

Your website’s personality should match the attitude of your business / company and your objectives while still fitting in with your client’s expectations of the business and industry you’re in.

Having a “look and feel” done before any development starts, allows you to make multiple changes to the website until you are happy with the entirety of the website and it components “look and feel” before the build.

When working with a web design company, take some time to clearly define your business objectives regarding the “look and feel” of your website to ensure that everyone is on the same page before web developments / build work begins.

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Written By: Rob

Facebook snubs BlackBerry – what this means for your site

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Facebook snubs BlackBerry – what does this mean for your website?

Facebook snubs BlackBerry – what does this mean for your website?

It’s official. Facebook has announced plans to stop supporting BlackBerry OS 10 by the end of the year, meaning it will no longer support social media apps on the device. As Ars Technica reports, this follows on from a similar move by popular messaging app WhatsApp, which will also end its BlackBerry support by the end of 2016.

This blow to BlackBerry is hardly a surprise. After all, the device once known as the “CrackBerry” has been all but buried by an avalanche of iPhones and Android devices over the past 10 years.

But what does it mean for your website?

Devices change, websites respond

We’ve all had the experience of loading up a website on our smartphone and having to pinch and slide like crazy before we can read the text – perhaps looking up the opening hours of a local Thai restaurant or doctor’s office. And we’ve all hopefully experienced the joy that comes from using a well-built, “responsive” website that can adapt its layout and styling automatically, depending on the device we’re using.

Importantly, responsiveness matters for web browsers too. A responsive website will shift its presentation to meet the needs of Explorer, Firefox, Chrome etc, and should also adjust to the size of your browser window.

But the fact that huge companies like Facebook are finally backing away from BlackBerry is a reminder that not all devices are created equal.

When building a new website it’s near impossible to create something that will look perfect across every device and in every browser, from the shiniest iPhone to the version of Explorer still running on that ancient family PC.

Testing matters

All this adds up to one time-consuming but important task: testing. Checking how your site looks on today’s most popular devices and browsers is a key step in the launch phase, along with testing things like contact pages, links and image load times.

That said, it’s also useful to remember that your site won’t necessarily look perfect everywhere. Don’t panic if a small number of users report that it looks a little “strange” on their particular device.

If you do know someone who still owns a BlackBerry, send us a screenshot of how your site looks to them. We’d love to see the results!

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Written By: remembercreative