Check out this website and their whole approach to marketing. Let me know how long it is before you figure out who’s actually the big company behind the totally different approach to marketing.
Here is what stands out in looking at this as an effective marketing tool:
- it is fun and colorful
- it has movement – both in the rotating graphics as well as in the variable typefaces being used.
- It is inviting, both from its graphics and it’s ability to share with others, and the ability to easily find information
- it states what it can do for me in a non-sales format way before I ever can get to the point of finding out what I can buy from them.
- It focuses on community and how we can interact locally, rather than with a big mega Corporation.
- It’s quick, concise, clear, and the messaging text is easy to figure out what it’s about, then get on, get off, and move on to my next task at hand.
- the navigation is easy to follow. While I usually don’t like the drop downs and chase the cursor type websites, this one is easy, because the targeted areas are large, and easy to click on, with a single layer drop-down.
I think the key here is that they are starting from a customer perspective, rather than from a corporate perspective, which is very key for any business these days, especially in working with the younger generation.
This site may or may not be the best for search engine optimization. Although it really is not clear exactly what terms they would be trying to optimize for anyways. They do rank at the top for “next door Chicago”. Which if that is their brand focus here, it is a good approach. But I imagine in the list of site objectives, SEO was lower on the list, and they are more successful in other site objectives.
I would love to have your perspectives on this.
I often hear the latter question whenever I tell people that part of how I market businesses is using search engine optimizations. Of course the next question is, Why? And the real question behind the question is ‘tell me the secret to getting lots of free traffic to my site without any work or money’.
Well one answer is along the lines of Timmothy Ferriss’ 4 Hour Work Week – If your effort in the site is passionate, then you will not count it as work, and all you need to do is write to your audience and Google will love you.
The reality is Google (or Yahoo, or Bing) does not hate you, nor does it love you. They are not even alive (ok a whole lot could and has been written on the personifcation on computers). They are just algorithms that look at a lot of websites day and night, week after week. They don’t care, they don’t judge. Judge as defined by Answers.com:
To form an opinion or estimation of after careful consideration: judge heights; judging character.
So while it is hard to get love from Google, that can work to your advantage. Think of it as the impartial, 3rd party that looks at how you communicate your message to others. It is the Terminator of website evaluation. It just evaluates. Is it perfect, no, but it is highly efficient and its bias is not extreme. How Google looks at your site is a pretty good indication of how people are probably looking at your site, relative to how other sites that are trying to communicate to your audience.
If you don’t have good content/information Google will tend to not rate your page/site well. If you have a lot of good content (that is text based), you can expect a reasonable ranking of your site.
There are a lot exceptions, but most who consider that Google hates them really don’t have good content. Do you disagree – put a specific in a comment and we can start a conversation. Recognizing this is a very wide open invitation, and responses may seem like personal attacks on the creator, I state I will only review the comments from the perspective of the machine that is running an algorithm of evaluating certain rules. It is just like your English Composition teacher saying your paper is too short – if the rule is 1000 words, and there are 990, you failed the test. It is not subjective, just count the words and look at the count. I will help you understand the rules – they are typically a whole lot easier to understand than writing the composition paper in high school.
So, if you don’t have enough passion to get tons of traffic ‘naturally’, the next easiest way to get Google to evaluate you as a better result than other sites is to put more content on your site. How to do that? Start with creating a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) collection from friends and family and staff and visitors, and put that on your site. More on FAQs to come…