Here at FCM we’ve been busy redesigning and launching websites for our customers. What we’ve discovered is that organizations want to jump right to appearance and designs versus thinking about the website’s content as an extension of the brand strategy.
A brand strategy is a foundational step in building a website. It’s about defining your mission, identifying your target audiences and packaging your service offerings in an intuitive manner for customers. It’s also about eliminating jargon and ‘funding-stream language’ that has no meaning to customers and instead, developing messages that encourage the visitor to take action.
Writing content for a website is a completely different skill set than writing content for brochures and publications. It requires understanding how to use key words within the content to move the website (or domain name) higher in the search engines. Make sure that you have key messages for each target audience that provide information about: a) the target audiences’ challenge/need; b) your solution to the challenge; c) the call to action; and d) the value proposition for engagement.
How can you tell if your website is effective? The Web Marketing Association (WMA) is a good resource to determine if your site meets industry benchmarks. Each year the WMA hosts an annual international WebAward competition that is the standards-defining competition establishing industry benchmarks based on the seven criteria of a successful website. ”The WebAwards look into all aspects of website development; it's not just a beauty contest for websites,” said William Rice, president of the Web Marketing Association. “Our expert judges evaluate the entire interactive experience and reward those sites that are best in their industry. The goal of the WebAwards is to both recognize the people and organizations responsible for developing some of the most effective websites on the Internet today and also provide valuable feedback to entrants on how their sites stack up against their peers and their industry's standards of excellence.”
FCM takes great pride in being the recipient of WebAwards for two of our recent customers, the National Association of Workforce Boards (NAWB) and the Association of Enterprise Opportunity (AEO). You can check out these websites and others in our online portfolio at http://www.fullcapacitymarketing.com/portfolio.php.
If you are thinking about a website redesign, please call us for a complimentary consultation. By aligning your website content with your brand strategy first, you can save yourself a lot of angst, time and money, resulting in a website that you can easily manage internally.