Over the summer we realized that Prim’d Marketing had outgrown its website, and we were selling products that weren’t represented online. This is common with businesses in their second or third year, as they evolve and need a “2.0 version” of themselves. In this final part of our How To Market A New Website blog series, we take you behind the curtain to show you how we realized we were ready for a marketing revamp and how we did it (so you can too). Part I explored what we did to prepare a firm foundation with The Brand Plan and a branded photo shoot, Part 2 focused on creating a strategic website, and Part 3 shows how we geared up to promote our website launch.
Sophie here, and in the final installment of our blog series ‘How To Market a New Website’, we recommend ways to promote your new website from sharing your new website with your community (your peers, clients, and potential clients) to ways of promoting it outside your network.
Share Your Creative Process
When we work with clients on website or branding launch or refresh we recommend sharing what they are going through with their online community by virtually taking them along with them on the discovery and building process. Social media and blogs have allowed consumers and fellow creative entrepreneurs to watch “the creative process” from the sidelines and they want to interact with brands who are transparent about what they are developing and see it come to life. This is particularly valuable for personal brands to show how different parts of their life come together, intertwine and give them a unique perspective on their work.
The way we work with clients on the creative process, The Brand Plan ( the foundational piece to the creative work), and the promotion side is highly dependent on the decisions being made on the operational side and the sales goals of the business. These decisions in addition to the tools and content you are creating for your audience affects the look and feel of your website. So sharing the discovery and building process with them through your blog and social platforms are key to opening up and "letting people in" which build trust and encourages more engagement.
How We did it:
In Part One of this blog series we explained how took our own advice and put ourselves through The Brand Plan process. We visually documented this and showed Jenni and I talking through our worksheets and compare notes on the process that would not only affect our new website but also consider how we could improve the process for our clients next time.
Instagram is an ideal way to visually showing the research side of your business from an “idea lab” perspective, and the work that goes into it “behind-the-scenes”. It is the platform that works for us as a business and our target audience so it's our primary focus in our marketing strategy.
We also wanted to take our community behind the curtain by showing “behind the scenes” at our photo shoot from making our final decorative touches to our office the day before, to getting our makeup done by our Prim’d partner Nikol Elaine that morning, and getting our pictures taken by our other partner and photographer extraordinaire Kristen Loken.
Reveal Your New Imagery As Teasers
Once your website’s is almost ready to go live, start sharing some of your new branded imagery as ‘teasers’ on social media with engaging captions that reveal you have something in the works that “you can’t wait to share with everyone”. This is also an effective strategy for promoting events, webinars, workshops to build momentum. Scheduling a handful of teasers leading up to your live date creates buzz and anticipation that something is about to happen.
How We Did It:
A natural progression to sharing the discovery process is then documenting the creation of your new content or tools through our social media platforms. We did this by showed us editing the photographs from the photo shoot on our screen, and then a few of weeks before the live date we started to post the finished results of our shoot. By including longer narrative captions that explained “Jenni and I have something exciting in the works, and we busy working on a 2.0 version of ourselves and we would be sharing our new website shortly after we returned from a business retreat with other creative entrepreneurs.” These teasers continued right up the final countdown to the website’s live date
Countdown To Live Date
Many brands choose to countdown to a launch to build up interest and excitement, this can be done in different ways. We chose to do a three day countdown by creating numbered visuals from our shoot on Instagram that appeared daily in an uninterrupted way to create a pattern. These started on a Monday and counted down to the site going live on a Thursday morning (a peak day on social media). Each caption highlighted new aspects to the site such as a new product suite and new portfolio. You can do this by highlighting your new offerings on your website such as with a new eCommerce shop, a resource section, video lounge or a template library.
Don't Forget To Say Thank You
On the day our website went live we shared a beautiful image with the title ‘We're Live” that presented our new home page on a Mac monitor styled with a beautiful deck scape in keeping with our branding. We also used the same imagery using the title “Thank You” to share the news with those who were instrumental in making our new website a reality. Saying thank you to your clients, partners, family and friends doesn’t cost anything but time and is SO important. It takes a village to get a project like a new website made and out into the world so don’t forget to thank the people who helped you get to the finishing line!
In addition to sharing your website discovery and build process through your own blog and social media it is also crucial to share it with people outside your network. Asking partners and clients to share it with their network helps and also offering to write guest posts for other people’s blogs extends your online reach. We recently did an interview about our recent growth and new website for our co-working space The Hivery's blog, which they also shared on their social media platforms.
Consider who YOU could cross promote with to help spread the word about your new website?
Another way you can grow your community and social reach before a launch is doing an Instagram Takeover for a partner or like-minded brand that has a community you would like to tap into. We did an Instagram takeover for The Hivery during the Being Boss Podcast Business trip in New Orleans using their #beingbossnola hashtag to tap into a vibrant community of creative entrepreneurs. This social activity combined with plenty of networking during the trip not only helped to grow The Hivery’s following but helped us grow our followers over the course of a few days. It put Prim’d Marketing and the launch of our new website top of mind with our target market. By the time to countdown to the live date we had developed more meaningful brand friends and grown our Instagram following by 30%.
Organize Your Promotion Using An Editorial Calendar
How did you we keep on top of all this promotional activity and get everything done on time? We treated our website launch like any other of our client launches by creating an Editorial Calendar. This tool is also supported by accountability reminders to preschedule our social posts. What information that needed to go out on what date, at what time, with what image, what caption, what call to action, specific link, relevant hashtags etc. We have found this to be the best way to stay organized and in control of a specific launch or the ongoing promotion of blog and social content on your various platforms.
Are you working on a new website at the moment? We would love to hear from you and answer any questions you may have in the comments below or through our social platforms. One of the most important things to remember is the enjoy the process and have fun taking people along with you on the ride!
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