Updated: Mar 20
If you’ve wondered where I’ve been, let me say that I’ve been here, but tackling a tough task: revising my website. But, I didn’t just revise it, I burned it down and created an entirely new one! Take a look: www.redfirebranding.com.
The process was hard. Why? Because a website forces you to look at issues you probably want to ignore. In fact, it’s a little bit like doing your taxes or writing your LinkedIn profile—you know you should do it, but you just don’t want to.
I’ve created strategies and copywriting for five other sites over the last 12 months as well; here’s what I learned:
7 Lessons Learned in Revising a Website:
Your Website is Never Done – A website is like laundry. You’re never done; there’s always more to do. Instead of thinking of it as a burden, embrace it. Business owners who never revise their website cultivate cobwebs on their site. They stop entertaining new thoughts, and their site goes stale.
Identify Your Brand & Its Positioning – Ahhhh! This element is the tough part; you must think through who you serve, what you offer, and what’s your competitive advantage all wrapped up within your brand personality and vocabulary. For example, I knew that I could never use the phrase, “learn more.” Ugh! Instead, my CTA’s (Calls to Action) are “Let’s go! Let’s chat! Let’s get a cuppa java,” etc.
Determine What You’re Not – It’s important in branding to remember that your brand is what you are…. but also what you’re not. For example, a savvy massage therapist says, “I don’t do fluff & buff; I work with people in pain.” (Note her clear target.) Or a videographer who quickly explains that he doesn’t do weddings. Articulating your brand is key in revising a website.
It Takes Longer Than You Think It Does – No matter what your team tells you about a time estimate, double it! Under no circumstances should you create an artificial deadline in creating your site – as in, “I need my new site up by the time I give this killer speech.” Wrong! Create deadlines, but recognize that timing is fluid.
There are a Ton of Moving Parts – Most sites today have “contact us” forms, enrollment applications, video, and blogs. What does this mean for you? It means that all of these plug-ins must play nicely together.
Prepare the Key Assets – Revising a website requires the domain, hosting, passwords, logo files, photos, and video sources. Now is the time to gather all of this material to save headaches later.
Hire Experts – Of course you could do it yourself, but really? Is revising websites your core competency? One of the benefits of hiring experts is to get an outsider’s point of view. After all, branding is not what you say you are, but how others perceive you. Understanding that perception assists you in creating a better site.
So, is my site done? Nope, but sometimes “done is better than perfect.” All new photos coming April 1 (no joke), and I’ll share my new video speech on “Future Proofing Your Brand and Career” after I deliver it March 11 in San Diego.
Meanwhile, how’s your website going?
To your sizzling success,