Top 10 Website Myths

websitemythsWith the rapid growth of technological ability, there’s a lot a misconception about what it takes to create and market a website. In an effort to clear up those misconceptions, and the resulting mistrust of digital agencies, this post breaks down the top 10 website myths- in regards to development, design, and marketing.

Website Myth #1: I Can Do It Myself and Save Money

As long as you are a web developer, this is absolutely true!

The first thing I’d suggest doing is to look at how much your billable hour is, then decide how long you think it will take you to learn several languages and design concepts… then do the math. Likely you’ve already realized you can save money by hiring an agency! You are awesome at what you do… and likely that is not web design.

That point aside, one should also consider that an agency brings a world of experience in not only development and design, but also marketing and branding. This allows the agency to help you build a website that is marketing-focused and that will communicate the right message to the right audience. Simply put, a website that converts is going to make you money…and website that doesn’t loses you money.

Consider how important your website is to your business. Your first impression is to most of your prospects. What is that worth?

Website Myth #2: I Can’t Afford a Custom Website

Think of your website as an employee – one that works 24/7 and is the first impression a potential customer may have. Do you want that employee to be unprofessional and sloppy, or would you rather that employee be professional and ready to serve your customer?

As we mentioned above in myth #1, you get what you pay for. That bargain website will get you a lazy, inattentive “employee” that will end up costing you more in the long run. Whereas getting the right “employee” upfront will actually save you money and help you create more business, conversions and leads.

There are many options and packages that agencies can provide. Have a conversation with us and you might be surprised that you can afford a professional custom website that helps your company grow. The question you should be asking is if you can afford NOT to get one.

Website Myth #3: I Can Reach Just As Many Prospects by Spending Money on Other Marketing Materials

We aren’t going to tell you to ditch your marketing materials, nor will we tell you that a website is all you need. However, we do believe in integrated marketing strategies that include both print and digital mediums.

A website allows you to update your customers with new products, services, and offers easier than traditional methods. Plus, when your doors are closed and brochure is inaccessible, your website is the “employee” that’s always available.

Website Myth #4: Creating a Website is a Huge Time Commitment

 Yes, creating a website will require a time commitment from you but nothing quite like you imagine. A web design experience here at Rock Paper Simple is not only profitable for you once it’s completed but is also educational, exciting AND fun. Our process includes questionnaires to help guide you through the process, fun graphics to announce your new website, convenient online forms for you to send us your information, and “web guys” that are knowledgeable and easy to reach.

We develop your website quickly and efficiently, and while we do ask for some of your time, we know you are busy so we do our best to guide you along the process. This way we can get to work on your site and have it launched ASAP!

Website Myth #5: Once I Have a Website, I’ll Immediately Get Leads

 You can have an awesome website that kicks your business into overdrive. In fact, it can conquer whole galaxies and cook your breakfast for you, but if you don’t market your business, no one will know about you or your website. Even the organic SEO value (search engine optimization) that your website has on launch will need some time to pick up steam. It takes time and some marketing efforts… but soon, you will be out there earning market share! The trick is to have a strategy!

Website Myth #6: The More Elements On the Site the Better

When it comes to web design, we like to say, “Keep It Simple.” From typography and colors to images and your logo, every element communicates something to the visitor. If your company’s website is too busy or distracting, it’s likely that visitors won’t have a positive experience, nor is it likely they’ll stick around and convert to a lead. Focus on a simple design that enhances the features, attracts visitors and limits distractions.

Website Myth #7: Photos I Find On Google Will Work

So you want to use an image you found on Google for your website? This is almost always a bad idea! It’s considered illegal to use any copyrighted image without the owner’s permission or without purchasing a license that grants permission. It would be best to use your own photos, but we also understand that’s not always possible. We suggest buying royalty free images or using free ones with common license; however, you still run the risk of looking like every other site in your industry.

Best case scenario, you have your agency (that could be us!) come out and do a photoshoot for you to create some amazing pictures to use in your marketing, but alternatively most agencies have access to royalty free images they pay a license to use.

Website Myth #8: I Don’t Need Custom Graphics

Most WordPress-powered websites start off as a generic template that can be tweaked here and there to the look and feel of your brand. There are probably multiple websites using the same theme as yours, so what makes you stand out? By designing buttons, slider images, navigation, and colors to reflect your brand, you distinguish yourself from your competitors and taking that next step and having the site designed custom from the ground up allows you to stand out all the more!

Website Myth #9: If It Looks Fine on a Mobile Device, It’s Responsive

More and more people are viewing websites on their smart phones and tablets, but just because your site looks fine on a mobile device, that doesn’t mean it’s responsive. A mobile website is a different website at a different URL designed specifically for mobile devices. A responsive website adapts to the device’s screen, so whether you’re viewing a website on your Smartphone or desktop computer, the website will adapt for a seamless view. By having a responsive site, you have only one website to manage. Plus, the technology is forward thinking and will work for years to come.

Website Myth #10: Once My Site is Created, It’s Difficult to Make Changes

Truth is, it’s not difficult to make changes to your website. Most WordPress-powered websites have a user-friendly interface, so you can easily add new content and keep your website updated. However, you’re awesome at what you do and you shouldn’t have to worry about keeping your website up-to-date, setting up forms and making sure your web presence is being used to its full potential. Imagine if you had a trusted team on your side maintaining it all for you. Wouldn’t that be more manageable than handling those confusing and annoying issues? We thought so too!

 

We’ve heard a lot opinions when it comes to digital marketing, and web development and design. No doubt there’s many ways to achieve goals and solve problems, and here at Rock Paper Simple we have our own proven process that delivers results. However one thing to remember is that in the end, every process requires trust. Trust in yourself that you’re making great decisions for your company, and also trusting in turn, that the digital marketing agency you choose will help you accurately express your company to the world.

At Rock Paper Simple we build awesome websites that are designed to impress visitors and drive revenue- and we’d never sell you short or ask you to break the bank for quality service. Trust an award-winning team of experts, and get the awesome website you deserve by starting here!

Head Honcho Speaks at Media Magic Intensive

Joshua was one of the mentors and speakers at the Media Magic Intensive this past Saturday and his topic was Making Your Website Marketing-Focused (surprise surprise!). The video below is a snippet from his 45-minute session. With those 45 minutes he crunched in the 7 Steps To Building a Marketing Focused Website presentation, which is typically 1.5 hours (no wonder he is talking so fast!), added some worksheets, and gave the attendees points they could walk away with to apply to their websites right away. Take a look!

Psst! At 2:20, Shannon Gronich spins the camera around… so careful, don’t get too dizzy!

Want to hear Joshua speak? Keep an eye out at one of the upcoming Business Acceleration Summit events, or join us at one of our brand new Digital Refreshments Series events. The first one is scheduled for January!

 

 

Loud and Clear- 3 Quick Tips for Uploading Quality Images

In a world of Yelp reviews, Facebook advertising, and 140-character tweets, your online presence has really become your storefront. The online adaptation of business and marketing means that image size and quality are now even more important to your success. While we would all like to believe that consumers don’t judge a book by its cover, outward appearances do matter – whether it’s the sign out on Main Street or your header photo on Twitter.

Have you ever uploaded a crystal clear photo to Facebook only to be disappointed in the fuzzy edges it produces in your image? Whether managing your own page or landing on another’s, there’s nothing more off-putting than poorly sized images and blurry text. Keeping your social media presence consistent and professional is important, even down to the last pixel.

Here are three quick tips to solve the conundrum of poor-quality online images!

 

Ditch Your JPEG for PNG

While JPEGs and PNGs are both standard image file formats, they make a world of difference when it comes to Facebook. JPEGs have what’s known as “lossy” compression, while PNGs are considered “lossless.” In simple terms: JPEGS are more compressed and lose their quality, while PNGs are only compressed when uploaded to sites such as Facebook. So next time you upload a new cover or header photo, opt for a PNG and eliminate those fuzzy edges.

Know Your Dimensions

Each social networking site is different, and it’s important to know what dimensions your photo should be. For example, a Facebook cover photo is 851×315 pixels, while a Twitter header photo is 1,500×421 pixels. Knowing this and sizing your image accordingly will help to produce the best results. Want to know more dimensions? Check out the 2016 Social Media Image Sizes Cheat Sheet.

 Stay True to Your Brand

Don’t have brand guidelines?  Maybe it’s time to start developing some. It’s not only important to upload your photo in the correct format, but to also ensure that you’re giving your logo the respect it deserves on the image. This means: don’t distort it to make it fit, cover any part of it with other art, place it on a busy background, or stray from your brand guidelines in any other way. Be consistent and meticulous with your logo across all platforms and you’ll ensure success in displaying it.

 

Want to better understand online imaging or create your brand guidelines? Click here to connect with our team.

 

Google Is Dividing Its Index Between Mobile and Desktop Search!

googlemobileGoogle uses an index to allow for all the searches their users do on a daily basis and this index holds information about your website our website and a whole host of websites. That index is about to be split between mobile and desktop… meaning that the mobile index will actually be populated completely independent of the desktop experience.

Remember “Mobilegeddon”? When Google announced that the mobile versions of our websites would impact our ranking? Well, this is the next step. We are still vague on the details, but it sounds like instead of it just having an impact on our overall rankings, it will now crawl and index and rank the mobile version of our websites and ONLY take the mobile version into consideration when displaying results to mobile searchers. This is a huge change and one we all need to keep an eye on.

We will post again once we know more, but it is definitely time to think about ensuring the mobile version of your site will stack up. The rumbling is this may be implemented in a matter of months.

5 Call-to-Action Examples That Are Rockin’ It Right Now

Call to Actions can be a simple button placed after some text, or they can be a more elaborately designed button that stands alone. You have them sprinkled into social media posts and they’ve been written into your content, but are your CTAs the best they can be? If you aren’t seeing a whole lot of conversion from your current strategies, take a look at these Call to Action examples that we think have great technique.

The Balancing Act:

Check out Spotify’s homepage. They have two Call to Action Buttons because they’re targeting two different types of listener, and they’re a great example of why simple often prevails over flashy, especially when you have more than one CTA. While the pink and purple colors of their site definitely catch our attention first (what happened to the green?!), the contrasting and bold white text is really what dominates our focus. Their design works because they kept text to a minimum, they showcase their product through a subtle background of playlist cover art, and their CTAs are highly visible to both types of listeners which maximizes their opportunity for new sign-ups. Spotify made a great decision to have their Call to Actions side by side with only a slight difference between them; the darker hue that backs “Get Spotify Free” almost blends in at first glance, bringing our attention first to the button they’d prefer us to choose- “Get Spotify Premium.”

cta-5

Being Socially Savvy:

Implementing good strategy by utilizing Ad opportunities on any social media platform will help boost your business. With the right verbiage, imagery, and intent, you can connect with your target audience and start to build a customer relationship that leads to conversion. Currently there are now many options to choose from across a variety of platforms, but the most popular option has become the Ads that appear integrated into user “Home” feeds. Advertising on Social Media lets you briefly showcase the highlights of your business or brand identity, and by using amazing graphics, offering sneak peaks, and bringing quality content to followers, you can lead potential clients to your website (and convert ‘em!). So if your marketing goals are to increase brand awareness, drive traffic to your site, or expand target reach and grow your customer base, then social media CTAs are for you. Here’s a fine example of a CTA on a feed-style Ad from NatureBox on Facebook:

Surprising Humor:

This pop-up from Good Housekeeping abruptly stops us from reading whatever article we clicked on by taking up the entire browser window, but the bright colors and fun language keep us from getting too frustrated. Through clever verbiage, simple design, and bright colors, this refreshing pop-up effectively gains email subscriptions because it has us admitting that we could use a little help keeping things clean around here. Even if you aren’t interested in giving GH your email address now, the lighthearted jest of the exit link appeals to clean freaks and reluctant scrubbers alike, and encourages them to click through the site and read other articles- and thus gaining followers.

 

Embracing Window Shoppers:

Prezi has a very minimal homepage with a lot of whitespace surrounding their text and Call to Actions, which draws a visitor’s attention to the video banner and colored CTA buttons. Similar to Spotify, Prezi balances two main CTAs side by side (for individuals vs. business), however underneath those there’s a CTA that draws even more attention. Prezi encourages visitors to “See the Science,” embracing the fact that most people want evidence of success before they invest in something. The iconography and colors that are used draws our eyes down the page, and they pave the way for even more visual aids on the linked page. This CTA clearly illustrates that Prezi has research relating to the effectiveness of their product and that they want to share it with us. This refreshing Call to Action method encourages people to make an informed decision by learning something before they sign up, and “See the Science” is definitely a unique take on the traditional About page.screen-shot-2016-09-20-at-12-03-40-pm

The Doorstop:

The final plea to users, an exit CTA is a pop-up window that most websites set to appear around the average exit time of that page. These CTAs traditionally offer a discount or incentive, and then provide two options- stay or go. They can sometimes be seen as a nuisance, but if designed correctly, doorstops can be a very effective method for keeping users on-site, capturing leads, and getting visitors to convert to buyers. Take a look at this example from Copyhackers. The colors are positive, the layout is clean, and the language is relaxed. Instead of expressing urgency, the tone of this exit CTA says “Hey, your stuff is probably already great but before you go, here’s an opportunity to be even better at what you do…do you want this resource?” It uses buzzwords like share, success, and steps, which leads us into thinking, “Hmm, maybe I want to at least skim through this ebook after all.”

ctacopyblog

 

Call to Actions are a super important part of marketing strategy, and hopefully you’ve already incorporated some that are working for you. We just wanted to give you guys a bit of reference for CTA techniques that are working really well right now for these businesses, to help you get the creative juices following for your next site upgrade or campaign push. It’s always a good idea to collect examples of website features, CTAs, or other digital marketing aspects that inspire you to make changes for your business. This way we can help you make those adjustments and strategize with you on how to meet your new goals!

Psst.. You Should Clear Your Facebook Cache!

Chances are you have a Facebook account and you share content on there consistently. It’s probably why you’re reading this blog (your curiosity got the best of you!). Anyway, thanks to Facebook we can share updates with our fans in a matter of seconds, but have you ever noticed there are times the picture is missing when you share a Web URL? Or the previous title or image is being pulled instead of the latest?

The reason why this happens is because Facebook caches (aka stores data) already shared URLs and pages. It’s easier for Facebook to go look at the cached information stored on their server rather than go to your awesome website and fetch the updated title or picture. This technically speeds up their process, but if the cache isn’t updated, it may cause an issue for you.

Why does Facebook cache information?

When you share a link back to your webpage or another page on the Internet, Facebook downloads the content and uploads it for their users to view. Once a website is shared, Facebook stores a temporary file on its server to save time and resources and eliminates the need to re-download the information.

For example, say you shared the link to your home page a month ago, and since then the home page was updated with new pictures. Facebook will likely pull the previous data since that is what’s being stored rather than the new data. A fan clicking on the shared link won’t see the right content and/or picture because the Facebook cache hasn’t been cleared.

How do I clear my Facebook post’s cache?

Facebook created a tool called Debugger that can be used for any URL. It depicts what will be shown when the link is shared and will automatically update it with the latest title, description, and photo with the click of a button.

Here is the step-by-step process on how to clear your Facebook’s cache:

• Go to Facebook.com and login.
• Access the Debugger tool here.
• Enter a URL and click “Debug.”
• Go back to your Facebook page, type in your content with the updated link to view the updated information.

It’s as simple as that! For more tips on how to make your website and digital marketing awesome, check out some other posts- like this one!

“What the Heck Am I Looking At?” – A Brief Tour of Google Analytics

Alright, in our last post we highlighted some key Analytics terms you should be familiar with, especially if you’re going to be reading reports on your digital marketing efforts. Hopefully you studied up! Today we’re talking about navigating to subsets of data within Google Analytics that we think you should become familiar with first, and knowing those terms will help you understand what you’re seeing. We understand that every business is unique, with shifting needs and goals that can definitely be applied and captured within Analytics, but exploring all of Google Analytics’ capabilities with you could take awhile. Not that we don’t want to spend extra time with you -that sounds awesome- but let’s save it for September’s hangout!

Google Analytics has way more capability than we’re going to talk about today, and even though we know you’re a smarty pants who could handle a full tutorial, we wanted to stay pretty basic with this post. We know most of you just want to be able to check-in on your website…see how it’s doing, if it needs anything…you know, because your business can be your second child. This popular reporting tool is widely used because it’s customizable, nicely organized, and the plethora of data keeps you in the loop. You get to see a lot of information about what’s going on with your site, after putting just a small amount of code on the backend.

“Ok yes, data is very useful and good, but this is overwhelming to stumble through. What am I looking at?!” Never fear, Rock Paper Simple is here!

Creating or logging into your existing account is easy. Head over to Google.com/analytics to get started. It will be tied to an existing google account or you can make a new one. Keep in mind Analytics lets you add/revoke user access under Admin, so we recommend having a business Gmail account to associate with your Analytics account, and you can add team members later on if certain people need to see it.

After logging in to your account you’ll see the major categories of Home, Reporting, Customization, and Admin across the top. Home is simply a list overview of client accounts, Customization lets you compile specific reports to email out, and Admin is well, Admin. In there you create property clients and add their website accounts, and if you’re new to Google Analytics you’ll be directed on how to set up web tracking. If you need help with this process, contact the team here. If you’re good to go, read on!

For now we’re going to tell you to just focus on the Reporting tab and forget about those other tabs, because all the fun stuff lives under Reporting. The core of Google Analytics is there, so it makes sense for us to skip to the good part, right? Under Reporting, click through each subsection on the left sidebar. You’ll see the top four sections are user tools that can help simplify and customize your Google Analytics experience. We’re going to skip over those too, but they are useful to know about so here’s a quick description:

Dashboard – Super handy, and first under Reporting for a reason. You can pick and choose subsets of data to see, creating a unique visual for you to speedily analyze accounts. If you’re not interested in navigating Analytics to see your reports the standard way, this is for you!
Shortcuts – If you need to check in routinely with a specific account, then you should create a shortcut to that report. It’s not saving too much time, but you’ll look like a wizard at your next meeting when you pull up the numbers your boss wants to see with speed and ease.
Intelligence Events – You can set up alerts to be notified when Analytics receives data on criteria you specify, or when data is abnormal. This can be useful when tracking activity after a major campaign or implementation of something new.
Real Time – Exactly what it sounds like! Be the spymaster you always wanted to be and watch top referrals, pages, search activity, top locations, and more… all in real time!

Underneath those are (arguably) the most important sections- Audience, Acquisition, and Behavior. When you look at their Overview sections, you can see a standard report that provides a line chart of data from a specified time range, and more illustrative data charts beneath that. Thankfully Google understands that numbers can get overwhelming, so they’ve included many chart options for us Right-Brained thinkers who like a more visual representation of data. The default line chart shows data for Sessions, but you can choose which data shows in the dropdown right above the chart. You can also add another data line for comparison!
Overviews are helpful when you want “at-a-glance” updates about your site, but for most of you who want a little more information about what those numbers mean for business, we recommend heading straight to a couple of places:

First is Acquisition -> All Traffic -> Referrals.

Referral reports are a great way to see where your traffic is coming from and the quality of that traffic. With this report you can see the specific pages that are bringing viewers to your site, and their associated bounce rate and session data. This is can be the most important report for a lot of people (shortcut worthy!). It provides a visual outcome of marketing efforts, leading businesses to make better decisions on whether to amplify, change, or quit those efforts accordingly.

Another good place to start is Behavior -> Site Content -> All Pages.

The data within Site Content gives you a breakdown of user behavior. Here you can see total pageviews, entrance and exit value of pages, and where users navigate to after they land on your site. For example this restaurant has the most pageviews on the homepage (/) but people stay the longest on the /about/ page, signaling their interest in reading through content on the atmosphere and dining experience. This data is super helpful to look at because you can see which pages are aiding or hindering the flow of a user’s experience- telling you if you should beef up your page’s content, if your SEO needs work, and other valuable info!

Confident in Getting to Those Places? Browse around within Reporting!
Once you become a little more comfortable exploring Google Analytics, we recommend playing around with sections under Audience. In here you can see your global marketing reach, enable demographic data pulling, know which technology is being used to find your website, add segments to track social media traffic, and more. With this knowledge it becomes easier to better target your marketing efforts, and you can be smarter about captivating users. It sounds like a lot, and it is, but it’s worth learning more about. Also, when your clicking around subsections, don’t forget to click on the blue links in your tables! They allow you to see even more subsets of related data. For example if you see in Audience -> Geo -> Location that most of your sessions originate in the U.S., follow the links to see state rankings, and further to see which cities in that state are top visitors of your site. If you need additional assistance or information about what something is, remember that you can click on the little graduation hat icon that hangs out under the date range! Google does a good job of defining things and helping Analytics stay user-friendly.

Wrapping it all up…
Google Analytics is a great tool that lets you see data for just about any custom inquiry you can come up with. What you do with that data is the important part! If you get really into exploring Analytics and you enjoying checking numbers, there’s potential for it to become a powerful tool in expanding your business, and we’d like to talk to you about that. However after all this, if you decide that numbers just aren’t your thing (or you’d rather get simple reports from us) we can certainly talk about that too! If you have any questions, or you’re interested in getting an analytical report sent to you in plain English, call us or drop a message here.

Er, what’s the difference? A brief overview on file formats

*IMPORTANT NOTE:* if it doesn’t contain the AI or EPS file, you were not provided the original vector logo, which you should have received if you truly own your logo. Trust us, you will want these two file types when it comes to future projects.

When you purchase a logo package here at Rock Paper Simple you own your logo. It’s that simple. We provide you with every industry standard file type, as well as an explanation so you can better understand what all these files should be used for.

Anyway, the files you receive may contain file extensions like JPG, PDF, PNG, AI and EPS…So what’s the difference? Here’s what you need to know when it comes to file formats:

 

.JPG

This is the most common web file type you’ll see and a file format most everyone is familiar with. JPG, also spelled JPEG, can be opened on almost all computers. This file type does experience “lossy” compression, meaning the quality of the image decreases as the file size decreases.

Please note that a JPG is NOT a vector file. Rather, it is locked in at a certain size and can only be scaled down in size. It is also non-transparent, meaning a white background surrounds the image.

.PNG

PNGs are amazing for interactive documents such as web pages, but are not suitable for print. The reason PNGs are used in web projects is because your image is saved with more colors on a TRANSPARENT background. This makes for a much sharper, web-quality image.

While PNGs are “lossless,” meaning you can edit them and not lose quality, they are still low resolution. A PNG file is similar to a JPG with the exception that it does allow for transparency. Similar to a JPG, a high-resolution PNG is necessary for printing and a low-resolution version is ideal for use on screens and other digital displays.

.GIF

GIFs are another option when it comes to having a transparent background, but involve less colors than a PNG. It is almost always a better option to use a PNG.

An animated GIF file is a graphic image that moves on a Web page. Within a single file, a set of images is presented in a specific order to make up the GIF, which stands for graphics interchange format. An animated GIF can loop endlessly or it can stop animation after one or two sequences. GIFs are most frequently used as Web banner ads.

.PDF

Invented by Adobe, PDFs capture and review rich information from any application, on any computer, with anyone, anywhere. PDF stands for Portable Document Format. It can embed and encapsulate graphics, fonts, colors and other information required to view a file. It is the most requested file type by most professional printers today.

When a vector logo is saved in a PDF format you can view it without any design editing software (as long as you have downloaded the free Acrobat Reader software.) This is by far the best universal tool for sharing graphics.

.EPS

EPS is a vector file format that is designed to produce high-resolution graphics for print. It is more of a universal file type (like the PDF) that can be used to open vector-based artwork in any design editor, not just the more common Adobe products. In the design world, an EPS file type is an industry-standard.

Out of all the file types, you most likely won’t be able to open it. Don’t worry if you can’t. It is advised that you hold on to it should another designer or an industry partner request a vector format logo.

If you need a large banner or a business card, a logo in EPS will always scale to fit your needs.

.AI

This is by far the image format most preferred by designers and the most reliable type of file format. Adobe Illustrator is the industry-standard for creating artwork from scratch, therefore is the program in which your logo was created. Illustrator produces vector artwork; this is the easiest type of file to manipulate. They are constructed using proportional formulas rather than pixels.

 

Your logo and brand graphics were created as a vector, and you should always keep the master file on hand. The real beauty of vectors lies in their ability to be sized as small as a postage stamp, or large enough to fit on an 18-wheeler!

To learn more about Rock Paper Simple’s branding services contact us here or give us a call today at 321-626-2172!

Five Ways to Stay True to Your Brand on Social Media

Today, social media is the fastest way to expose a brand, so it’s essential that it’s represented and communicated accurately. A brand is anchored by its values, and there’s no better place to let those values shine than in the social realm. Whether you’re just getting started in social or have been a pro for years, here are a few ways to ensure that you’re staying true to the brand you’ve worked so hard to build.

 

1. Know Your Social Personality

Before you can stay true to your brand in the social media world, you have to know what your personality is. Social media creates space for your brand to reveal its authenticity and give a great picture of what you’re about. While some brands may default to humor, it’s not the only way to be personal. Maybe your brand is warm and caring, or maybe it’s more direct and serious – whatever it is, be sure that the tone of your posts shows the personality you wish to convey. The best way to establish your personality is to outline your brand’s values and identify your audience.

 

2. Be Creative but Consistent

You can’t have creativity without some consistency. Once you’ve landed on what your brand personality is, ensure that the majority of your content follows that voice and embodies your values in every post. So you’ve decided you want to up your creativity with #WisdomWednesday? Go for it – but make sure the content stays in line with your brand personality and is posted consistently each week.

It may feel constraining, but as with many lessons in marketing, some rules are meant to be broken – as long as they’re executed strategically. Say you have a fairly “serious” voice in the social realm, but every once in a while, you want to infuse a sense of fun with your audience. Feel free to stray from the norm, but make sure it’s executed thoughtfully and is appropriate for your target audience.

 

3. Be Visual

Whether your business is finance or fashion design, the best way to reveal your personality is through imagery. Never has a picture been more worth a thousand words than on social media. Social Media Examiner found that photos are the most engaging type of content on Facebook, with a staggering 87 percent interaction rate from fans. Whenever possible, opt for utilizing photos and videos to communicate your values and showcase your personality.

 

4. Stick to a Story

Every brand has a story – whether it’s the story of how the company was built or the stories of who it impacts on a daily basis. Story matters, and on social media, it can be one of your greatest tools. The strongest connection a consumer, donor, or partner of a brand can make is to hear from someone just like them. Utilize your staff and customers to share their own stories and use them in the social realm.

 

5. Be Responsive

You may have noticed that some Facebook fan pages have started displaying response rates to messages and inquiries if more than 90 percent of them are answered in less than five minutes. More and more, consumers are trying to connect with brands via social media rather than the contact form on their website. Whether through messages or comments, each post gives you the opportunity to connect with your audience directly, so take advantage of it and invest time in responding efficiently.

Along those same lines, take this opportunity to show authenticity with your brand. If someone uses your page to post problems or complaints, respond quickly and graciously. This will show that you’re not only determined to help in any way, but also that you’re paying attention.

 

Want to better understand your unique brand personality? Click here to connect with our team!

The Top 10 Website Pitfalls to Avoid #10 – No Traffic Strategy

The Top 10 Website Pitfalls to Avoid Rock Paper Simple 10Oh yea… we made it! We’ve gotten through all 10 pitfalls and with plenty of time to spare… and here’s #10! 

This one doesn’t really have anything to do with your actual website at all… but it is just as important as all the others, because if you have no strategy to drive traffic to your website, there really is no point in having it!

This is one of those questions we ask our clients. “How will people be coming to your website?” This really should be determined before even building your website, as it can greatly affect how it should be laid out.

Many companies have great websites with fantastic visual and call to actions, but they are not seeing the results they expected? Why not? Because there is simply no traffic going to the website! A website can only convert traffic that it receives. So how are people finding your website?

Without some sort of marketing to drive people to your site, your website would be like a billboard put out in the middle of the Sahara desert, wouldn’t it? It would be completely worthless and it won’t be seen by anyone… except the random gerbil and gazelle (yes, I used gazelle as an example on purpose and yes, they live in the Sahara desert).

So make sure you come up with a strategy to drive traffic to your site. It can be any number of marketing techniques including internet marketing. You could try search engine optimization, pay per clicks, social media marketing, content marketing, blogging, postcard mailings, speaking engagements, networking, radio and any other number of methods.

Just make sure you don’t have any of the other major pitfalls on your site once you do drive traffic to it!

Download our FREE eBook that includes the other 9 reasons!

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