A question that I often get asked from clients is whether they should start Social Media now or wait until they have a “good website” so in this article I thought I would tell you what we have found to be the answer.
To be honest with you we have had clients that have gotten great results from Social Media that don’t even have a website and others that have struggled to get the results they wanted because their web site was poor.
There are two things that need to be understood to answer the question:
1) Whilst some sites such as Facebook have tried over the years to create shopping portals in their sites where your customers can buy directly without leaving Facebook, the results have for the most part been poor to say the least.
Social Media is a Public Relations opportunity not an advertising vehicle.
What we mean is that Social Media lets your customers know who you are and what you do and will drive qualified and interested people to your marketing and your sales actions, but don’t expect it to do the selling for you. It definitely can contact huge numbers and make life very easy, but you also have to have some way to sell to the person when they contact you.
2) If your sales process is in person or live on the phone, because that is what your customers want, then the quality of your website should be second to getting lots of people to find out about you and get interested in you and what you do.
For example we have worked with consultants who would always sell in person and Social Media gives them lots of people to talk to and go and see. Another example is an auto electrician we have worked with whose customers bring their cars into the shop and can’t buy online. Social Media generates a lot of interest and gets people to come in; they don’t even have a website.
On the other hand if your clients want to buy your product online then you need a good website that can sell. Social Media will drive lots of people to your web site but your web site needs to be able to close them when they get there.
For example I worked with a client once who refused to update his website even though it had never made a sale. He was getting 50 people a week to his website and no-one bought anything. Social Media turned this into 300 people a week in the first month but still no sales. Unfortunately his clients like to buy online so it didn’t translate into sales.
So in answer to the question about whether you need a new website first or start Social Media comes down to your sales process. Do your customers want to buy online? If they do make sure your web site is right first, if they don’t get started and worry about the website later if you need to but start selling to the extra leads you’ve generated.
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(c) Digital Tiger 2015