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Ready to design your new website? Writing up your About Us page or creating your Services page? How do you know what to put in it?

If you’re like most people, you throw it together based on a sampling of other companies within your industry.

Or maybe you’ve been in business a while and it’s a create – test – redo approach where you originally created your “stuff” based on a sampling, you’ve tested it out for a while, and you’ve made corrections along the way. To the point it’s pretty good.

But is it great? Does it really give your clientele everything it should? Is it reaching out to the right people at the right time? Does it send the right message? Are you truly capturing 100 percent of the audience you should?

If not, you may be approaching your online content in the wrong way.

Online we’re all a little ADD. We get to where we’re going as fast as possible, only to back out and go somewhere else if we don’t immediately see exactly what we’re looking for.

If nothing makes us say WOW, we’re on to the next site. We want something that stands apart from all else. We want it to capture our attention and speak directly to us. We want the message to appear as if it was written exclusively for us.

Anything less makes us turn the other way.

So how do we do that? Easy.

Listen. Ask. Create.

The 3 Rules For Online Marketing

Listen

I love social media because you no longer have to rely on focus groups or survey people in person to get a general idea of what’s happening. Type in a question at Google and you’ll find a variety of answers to your questions. Head over to LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter and do a search for your topic. What’s the chatter?

Then listen to all they have to say. They will tell you what’s missing, what’s wrong, or what they really need from a business like yours.

“I hate standing in line. I would love to have someone deliver this to my home.”

“Why can’t I find something unique? Everywhere I go its like someone used a cookie cutter to create their business.”

“Hasn’t anyone had this problem? I feel like I’m alone in the world.”

You’ll see things like this all the time. Listen to it. Then start building your ideas around it.

Ask

Once you have your ideas, you can verify whether people are really attuned to your logic by heading out and asking them.

Create “this or that” questions that allow people to pick their favorites. Then spread very quick surveys all over your social sites to find out what people are really thinking.

The great thing about the Internet is people are used to sharing their ideas. All you have to do is ask. Don’t make things complicated or make them think for more than a few seconds. The quicker you can be, the more answers you’ll receive.

And always include open ended questions as well.

This or that?
Why?

The why, of course, is optional. But just by putting it with all of your questions, you’ll receive valuable feedback all time. So much so that you’ll occasionally gain valuable input on future products/services just by listening to how they respond to your questions.

Create

Only after your ideas are solidified should you take on the task of creating your marketing tools. Everything from your business card, to your website, to your About Us page can all be created in such a way they speak directly to the person viewing it.

When you define exactly what they want, you can give them exactly what they are looking for. And the funny thing is when you speak directly to one person on a very personal basis, you’ll reach directly into the mindset of the person that needs what you do the most.

And of course there are always dozens, hundreds, even thousands of other people all reaching that conclusion as well. You just have to find them. And your “personalized” message will do the rest.