“If you build it, they will come.” This is a line from an iconic Hollywood movie called “Field of Dreams,” with Kevin Costner. It’s also one of the biggest lies we believe in business when it comes to creating a new website.
Building a new (or improved) website for your organization can be exciting. It takes a lot of planning and hard work. And hopefully, when you are done, you are incredibly excited about the outcome! The problem that many organizations run into is they think that when the website is built, the work is done. They believe the line from the movie. They have built it…now the traffic will come!
Unfortunately, that’s not how website traffic works.
I hate the be the bearer of bad news, but once the site is functional, now the work of driving traffic to the website begins. This is one of the ways that websites are just like a retail establishment. You can’t just put up the “open” sign and have a steady flow of traffic. You have to do the work. So here are 7 ways to drive traffic to your new website.
You have likely heard of Google Adwords and Facebook ads. These are incredibly effective ways to drive traffic to your site. The best part about this traffic is that it tends to be very targeted. When it comes to Google Adwords, they have likely searched for the very solution you provide. For all its faults, Facebook is incredibly good at creating traffic as well. This is a great way to get your website on the map. The downside, of course, is that if your entire strategy is built on paid traffic, the cost will just continue to rise.
This is such an often overlooked strategy. When well-written and well-targeted, this can be extremely effective. We recently launched a website called JobsInCoshocton.com. The idea is to educate 17-24-year-olds in Coshocton County about the opportunities in their hometown. While sending this press release out nationally would make no sense, the local media is very interested. If you pick the right target, the audience might be hungry for your news.
There are a LOT of ways to use content marketing to promote your new website. The first is to create a blog on the new site or to have other interested bloggers write about it to drive traffic. You can also create videos or podcasts that can talk about the importance and features of the new site. You can also request to be a guest on other podcasts or videos. These content providers may already have an audience that speaks to your target, so you can help them (by providing interesting content) while they help you!
In the example of JobsInCoshocton.com, we will likely feature that team on the Coshocton Conversations podcast soon. That podcast already speaks to people who are interested in the area, so they would be a perfect fit!
We have said it before here, direct mail is not dead. And with the pandemic, its effectiveness has increased. When you want to drive traffic to your new site, a targeted direct mail piece can be powerful. A few tips to help increase the effectiveness include:
- Make it clear what you want the audience to do. Put a QR code on the piece to show people to scan it so they can head straight to the site.
- Do a postcard so they don’t have to open anything to see the information.
- Add an extra feature (like a magnet) so there is added long-term value to promote the site.
- Make it bumpy. Add a piece of branded merchandise to improve open rates and the long-term success of the mailer.
Using Branded Merchandise is a great way to build a tribe. These brand advocates can become the best source of “word of mouth” for your new website. The best brands have a tribe of people excited to tell the story. And if you are smart, you can make that even easier. You can certainly add your website to items that have a large enough imprint area. And just like your direct mail piece, you can create an amazing piece of merch with a QR code as well.
Branded merchandise is (by its nature) very targeted and also longer lasting. So by incorporating a quality piece of branded merchandise into your campaign, you can not only give the website a boost in the short term but give it a longer-lasting impact as well.
Email and Text
We have talked about the difference between brand marketing and direct marketing here before. Branded merchandise can serve both purposes. Email and text messages are hardcore direct marketing! Your own list of contacts in email and text can be one of the most valuable assets you have in your marketing toolbox. You own that list. By letting these “VIPs” know that you have a new website, you can create direct traffic to the site…right away!
When you know exactly who you are marketing to, you know what events they attend. Whether that is going to a trade show, a community event, or an educational conference, getting face to face with that audience can be powerful. At these events, you can create a buzz around the website and even show people how to use the new site. This “hand to hand combat” can be a great way to tell the story of your organization…and why the new website can be a great tool!
These are 7 ways to drive traffic to your new website. As you can see, I talk quite a bit about targeting the right audience. Traffic only really matters if it’s the right traffic. By using these strategies, you can not only increase traffic…but the right kind of traffic to the website!
Hasseman Marketing is your one-stop marketing shop. We work hard to “Deliver #MarketingJoy to you. If you want to make sure you never miss an update, now is a great time to become a VIP. Sign up to be “on the list” here.