Four Trends to Unlocking Web Success for Small and Medium Size Businesses

It is time for a web site redesign, right? Your old web site lacks the punch, zip and energy you need to meet your marketing needs.

You’re not alone.

Small and medium size businesses across the country are taking a purposeful look at how they engage online as a means to enhancing their prospect engagement and, ultimately, sales efforts.

For most professional marketers that aren’t deeply in tune with digital marketing strategies, it might feel like an organic, evolutionary effort to re-visit your Web activities for improvement. However, there are several large trends that are driving a marketer’s sensibility:
  1. Storytelling
  2. Inbound Marketing
  3. Social Media
  4. Experience
Storytelling
We live in an age of information overload. There is simply too much of everything. The key to this from a marketing perspective is to provide context and a narrative – create a truthful story about you, and, most importantly, how your business helps people or other businesses.
Remember, every anecdote that we share with somebody in conversation has a beginning, middle and an end, usually with a point. This is storytelling at its base level; the story of your business should be no different and should incite recall and sharing anecdotally with a positive benefit.

Inbound Marketing
Inbound marketing suggests that instead of a sales effort to identify prospects before applying an effort to convert them to a customer, companies should be present where there customers exist, creating value and service for them so they seek you out at time of need.

By analogy, instead of merely fishing in the lake, inbound marketing is about fishing at the right spot, at the right time, with the right bait. Sales then reels the fish in.

This is a flip of the role whereby marketing has existed to create sales opportunities by pushing. Now, marketing exists to provide customer value, often times to a greater degree than what is required for the sales effort. Savvy marketers are providing value with pull mechanisms.

Social Media
As an extension of storytelling and inbound marketing’s value creation where a customer lives, social media serves to create a one-to-one human connection where your customers and prospects exist online, across a number of different online properties – LinkedIN, Facebook, Twitter and other social networks.

Experience (or what I affectionately call “Oomph”)
It’s not enough to do the things listed above, everybody is doing this. The real key, the “secret sauce” if you will, is to provide something extra that entertains, delights, and engages your customers and prospects.

How you execute that “experience” is dependent largely on the blank canvas you have – and, it can be motion graphics, games, or advanced interactivity. Think “sizzle” and think about the positive feeling and impression you want to impart to a visitor of your web site. What can you do to have a prospect leave your site saying, “That’s a cool company.”

Why should you care?
These four trends (telling a story, creating value, being present online by pulling, and providing an experience) become very important to understand because in an age of digital connection before in-person human connection, your storytelling hook, your image online, your brand, and the content you create, as a matter of doing business, becomes paramount to success.

Simply, nowadays, if a prospect reaches out to you, you can be assured that they have already done enough research on your company to decide whether they want to work with you. A meeting is simply passing the “eyeball” test.
Alternatively, if you’re proactively selling new business with a team of salespeople, you can be assured that your prospect has drawn a deduction about you, your company, and your services based not on an initial meeting with you, but rather how you are presented online and if you’ve helped them at all at that point.

Nowadays, the old maxim about “first impressions are lasting impressions” does not mean YOU specifically, or the services of your organization, it means your brand image online and your firm’s engagement online.

You want to impact that as positively as possible, right? Of course you do.

Well, your web site is the hub for this and the engagement you offer from your web site via inbound marketing (value creation) efforts and social media serves to complement your hub. And, all of it should be with a bent towards experiential storytelling.

How to do this?
Well, having a great story to tell and a great web site is the place to start. TBH Creative can help you with that. And, a unified brand image across social media properties as an extension of your brand is important, too and TBH Creative can help you with that, as well.

However, when it comes to bringing your story and outreach efforts to life online, that’s where we come in. As a digital design studio that specializes in motion graphics (and as a partner with TBH Creative), we know that storytelling and an experience comes to life with motion and visual engagement.

Whether it be motion graphics in the header of your home page, or if your entire web site is based on interactivity and motion, your chances of presenting an excellent brand image at your web site, as a reinforcement of your story, as a complement to your value creation (inbound marketing) and your social media efforts, adds to the positive takeaway, bringing life to your organization, online.

The net result of following the mentioned four trends in online marketing will be an increase in energy, momentum and sales with your business. TBH Creative can lead you down the correct path and The Basement Design + Motion, in conjunction with TBH, can help add the sizzle that you need to stand out in a crowded and noisy business landscape.

Jeff Lefevere
Professional Internet Marketer
About the Author
A professional Internet marketer since 1996, Jeff Lefevere manages Client Services for The Basement Design + Motion (http://www.thebasement.tv/). Headquartered in Indianapolis and working regionally and nationally, The Basement Design+Motion, LLC defines, designs, develops, and deploys digital marketing that delivers - delivers on providing meaningful engagement and user experience that drives a response with its intended audience.

TBH Creative is proud to have a partner in The Basement Design + Motion. Contact us today to get your online sizzle!
Tatum

About the author | Tatum Hindman

Tatum is the president of TBH Creative and is responsible for building long-term client relationships. She enjoys the strategy behind web design and sitting down with clients to define online marketing goals. She likes to blog about questions or topics that clients ask about as well as sharing new tricks.

View more posts by Tatum

Receive articles in your inbox