We like beautiful things, beautiful people, and beautiful marketing. Why not? They are nice to look at.
However, beautiful marketing, like beautiful people and things soon loses its appeal when it turns out to be useless – especially if you’ve spent a lot of money on it.
The marketing tools that were once the realm of professional agencies are now readily available to small business. Businesses can now present professional looking online marketing at a bargain price. They can make their small business appear bigger, more successful and much less stressed about cash flow than they actually are.
A common trap, however, is focusing on the beauty of a new website rather than its’ effectiveness; i.e. what do you need your customers to DO when they see your marketing. The purpose of marketing is to prompt prospects into engaging with your business.
Too often we forget that websites are mostly a functional item. Sure, they can be more effective if they are beautiful, but primarily they exist to help customers get what they want.
Help your customers with clear instructions and guidance. If they don’t find what they want in two seconds, they’ll be gone.
The primary online marketing channels are websites, search ads and social marketing. The only reason you would spend money on any of these is to make more money. So always ask yourself the BIG QUESTION …
What do you actually want actual customers to actually DO?
This question should drive the design, content and architecture of your marketing. Wrap the beautiful bits around this, not the other way around. A call to action should not be an afterthought or tacked on.
Things to avoid in your CTA
Your calls-to-action (traffic direction) need to start at the first contact and connect the different stages of your buying process. Your funnel may begin on a social media site or even offline. At each stage, the goal is to learn a little more about your prospect and build a little more trust.
Their needs and risk profile will change as they move deeper into your sales funnel. They will become clearer on what they want and will be willing to give up more as the relationship and trust with your brand grows. So, offer more than you are asking for at the beginning. You’ll be able to ask for more commitment later in the funnel.
Open your website and follow the prompts. Do you have any? Are they noticeable? Do they excite? Do they offer anything useful to you, as a potential customer?
Now do the same thing on your phone. How did that go?