Last week I covered the initial three common mistakes websites make that rob them of potential sales. This week I am concluding with the final two mistakes. What you want to get from these two articles is how to use what works (good user experience and aesthetics, great content and a good ongoing conversation) to give you the best mix and tip the scale in your favor.
So let’s get started with the final two mistakes.
Nothing kills a relationship like bad conversation. Now, let’s face it, men are okay with it to a point; but ladies thrive on great conversations! However, when it comes to a website, the playing field is leveled—both men and women are looking for great information.
If your idea of a blog is to just write something to post, because you know you need to, but WHAT you write is not that important to you, you are having a bad conversation. Moreover, if you do not write well, yet choose to write your articles yourself instead of outsourcing it to someone else or choosing someone on your team who does, you are putting out a bad conversation.
With all the choices one has for content and the ability to find it in social media by just choosing a group who caters to the topic, why would anyone bother to read a subpar article? It blows my mind when I see one of my LinkedIn connections make a post and it reads, “Here’s my latest article. It’s about blah, blah, blah. I hope you like it.” REALLY? Would that attract you to read it?
Just like when wooing a lady, you make bold statements with the choice of restaurant, clothing, flowers, etc.; you woo your online audience with bold headlines, images that have impact and great content.
If you don’t know what to write, setup Google Alerts for your topic and see what’s trending. Then write an article from your perspective about what people are currently hot to read. Go through your social-media groups and see what questions and comments people are making, and write an article to solve a problem that’s being voiced. Tips, how-to’s and case studies pull the most.
Equally as bad is an article that has grammar, vocabulary and misspelling mistakes. People, life is not fair! People do judge you by how you speak and write. If the image is that the author of the blog is not very intelligent, then fear of the quality of service will push them away. Whether it’s true or not does not matter. What matters is the impression projected. You see, if they never engage you, because the content isn’t working, how will they know you are good at what you do?
Passive writing is boring. Period. Have you ever read an article written by some highfalutin intellectual, for a university or government agency? Avoiding the first person and explaining things in long, drawn out sentences? That it made you feel like the person who was falling asleep in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off attendance roll-call scene? Don’t write articles like that.
You want to write aggressively. If you’re not sure how, reread this article. It’s in the aggressive form. Nuff’ said!
Blog content needs to be written for a 10th to 12th grade reading level. Why? First, you never know who’s reading it; so you want to make sure they can. Second, your job is to persuade, not to sell.
If you’re writing to sound intellectual, using two-dollar words like acquiesced, obtuse, form factor, and your audience doesn’t know what they mean, you not only lost them, you wasted their and your time. As Albert Einstein said so eloquently (warning! $2 word!), “If you can’t explain it simply, you simply don’t know.” Therefore, make sure your audience gets your message, ensure they understand it and persuade instead of sell.
Finally, and I see this quite a bit, no blog at all. Some people fear writing one, or just couldn’t be bothered. It amazes me how many people will spend serious money to drive traffic to their website, but won’t take the time to blog—which does the same thing, less expensively, and gives you the following benefits:
So if your company or brand are making these mistakes and you’re wondering why your marketing is floundering (shoot! Another $2 word!)… ahem, not working well; this is called a CLUE! Do an analysis of your website from an unbiased perspective. If it’s your baby, it’s easy to justify and rationalize anything and everything. Get some professionals and would-be customers to look at it, and ask them:
After all, the site is not built for you; it’s built for your public and they have to like it. Be a big man or lady and take your castor oil, open mindedly, and then do something about it. It will make the difference in your success.