I wrote a post not too long ago about some rookie new business mistakes we see agencies making online (like not linking to your blog from your site, no social media buttons on your homepage, etc.). Consider this post something of a part two. A brief list below of online occurrences that, best case, will win you no favors with potential prospects and worst case, may cost you some business.
A site these days is, of course, a cost of entry for any agency. Although it’s gotten better, many agency sites are still created to impress other agencies, what with all the fancy flash and look at me uniqueness. Quite frankly, a site that’s straightforward, showcasing who you are, what you do, and the sectors you do it in will strike a better chord. (Not saying they should be boring mind you-sure, have some fun with it as well.)
Start with your home page-the place that represents who you are and is the first point of contact to the outside world, and specifically consider the following:
1) News section-If it was last updated in March of 2006 (which I just came across two days ago), you should take the news section off your site. It just looks bad and better to get rid of it completely.
2) Agency intro copy-Freshen any intro copy at least once a year, preferably more often- If you’ve got copy on the home page, you’ve got to at least tweak it occasionally.
3) Site Design-Keep it fresh and interesting, not saying you need to change it often, but an occasional refresh is always good.
You redesigned your site at the beginning of ’09 and you launched the agency blog at the same time. You were rolling, and in February even had two posts on the same day (mistake). But now it’s October and those were your last two posts. (Again-I saw this about two days ago as well.) Ask yourself in no uncertain terms, can I recommit to some kind of manageable schedule. If not, ditch the blog. You can always go back when you are ready. Something else to consider: are there other ways to contribute to the blog that you’re willing to entertain? For example, other members of the agency posting on the blog (if it’s only set up currently with the principal blogging), or could you also expand the content you’re willing to blog about to make it easier to come up with posts?
Along with that site re-design and new blog, you also got on Twitter. And 10 months later, you’ve still got that sole, lonely Tweet, “X agency is now on Twitter! Can’t wait to share what we’re all about.” Yes, your sharing certainly has been inspirational. Again, ask yourself about the commitment and if it’s not there, ditch it.
Ditto. If you’re not going to do it, scrap it.
Ditto again. Out of all the social media, this is the one with the least amount of excuse. Yes, LinkedIn now has more functionality with SlideShare and adding your blog posts, for example, but for the most part, your actual page is pretty static. You’re not constantly updating like Twitter or Facebook, so would it kill you to update your position in the agency for example?
The above is certainly not exhaustive, but hope it gives you some big-picture perspective as we get closer to 2010. Take a hard look at how prospects see you and get a few folks you trust, both inside and outside the industry to take a look at your online presence as well. It’s work that will pay off in the long run.