We have spoken to clients over the years who have a great idea for a web site. I look them in the eye and say “Great! we can make it happen for you – Now lets discuss how we will market the site long term.” There is normally a pause on their part while that thought sinks in. I then continue into the various ways Design the Planet, or the client, can market their site.
So many people think that “if we build it” then it will market itself and “they will come” – that people will come to the site simply because it exists online. We can load the site with meta data and have all of the key words in the right places and have the best CSS programming and the most optimized graphics, but that only gets you so far. The truth is, some sites can market themselves, especially in the short term, but you need a long-range plan to market a site ongoing.
When we design and code sites they are optimized for search engines like Yahoo! and Google and most of our new sites do very well in Search Engine ranking in the first few weeks, but if there are no ongoing updates, web marketing, viral marketing, traditional marketing (like outdoor media, radio or print campaign), blogging or key word bidding that bring activity to the site it will soon only be found in the nether world of search engines.
We put a lot of effort into getting to know the people we work for, and because of this, we often take accomplishing their goals personally. So, we go to great lengths to make sure they don’t throw their brand marketing dollars at fancy stuff that doesn’t work for them. So I like to say that “If we build it – they will come…however you have to show it lots of love and attention if you want it to help you make more money and reach your brand community.”