I’ve been thinking about redoing one of my websites (this one as a matter of fact!) and after reading this post by Andy Schulkind of Andigo New Media, I’d say it was a sure thing that I better get started!
Here’s what Andy has to say:
Your website still matters. In this age of social media, that may be hard to believe – and some social media “ninjas” or “gurus” are doing all they can to convince you that’s the case – but there are at least 3 reasons your website still must be the hub of your digital marketing.
(Don’t get me wrong: social media is still hugely important and I’m a strong believer in its power. I use it personally, professionally and for clients. But we use it to complement, not to take center stage.)
Here are those three reasons.
If you’re a social media ninja or guru, go right ahead and build your business around your social media presence(s) exclusively. Plenty of credibility in that – you have to walk the walk if you’re going to talk the talk.
But the rest of us, at least in most industries, still need something more. The fleeting nature of social media makes it difficult to achieve the kind of breadth and depth of presence that your prospects are looking for.
That’s an advantage in some ways – the digital world moves fast and it’s best not to get bogged down in yesterday’s news – but you still need to demonstrate to prospects that you’ve got some real-world permanence, too. That you’ll be here tomorrow. That’s difficult to achieve without a website.
Even more important than the permanence your web presence signals, it provides touch points and conversion opportunities that just don’t exist on social media or in other channels. And your business goals run a bit deeper than racking up followers, subscribers, and “likes,” don’t they? You’re looking for actual revenue.
Revenue doesn’t happen without conversion, and conversion is better suited to a website where you can more clearly lay out the value you provide and give your prospects a way to engage more deeply.
That’s not to say that social media doesn’t play a critical role in the conversion process. It can be a key element in expanding your audience and driving traffic to your site – the earlier steps in the sales funnel. But on it’s own, social media isn’t going to generate revenue very often.
Finally, and most importantly, your website is critical because you own it. Quick, what do these three things have in common:
– Compuserve – AOL - MySpace
All used to be hugely relevant. All have been replaced by far more popular channels today. And though Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest are all great marketing tools right now, one day they won’t be. Just like Compuserve, AOL, and MySpace.
So use social media channels to drive traffic to your website and be sure there’s something interesting and engaging waiting for your prospects when they get there. Use particular channels while they’re vital, keep an eye on what’s coming next, and don’t make anything you don’t own the core of your marketing, or you’ll be in real trouble when all the kids find a new sandbox to play in.