Is it necessary to have a website to build your brand value? To drive traffic to what is published, the content needs to be regular and fresh regardless of which online medium used. Content is king!
For the newbie business with a limited budget, a website no longer needs to be a priority after purchasing the domain. Once a product or service is established through the business, a review of where the target audiences are is a pivotal step when developing the strategy. Social media has evolved over the last few years, bringing a vast number of users to the online world. And social networks are already formed, providing an automatic consumer base. So why not use one of these mediums to launch a business and build brand value?
With a well-established product or service, coupled with the right content published, credibility and influence can be built without a website. Yes, a website has been the traditional means of promoting online, but the social networking sites (majority are FREE) have expanded to allow for optimal publishing options, from general content to video uploads.
Take the following into consideration before you allocate a portion of your budget to a website.
Facebook – Community Services or Consumer Products, including nonprofit industries can monetize their brand through Facebook with a fan page. This platform is ranking in the top three, topping out at over 350M users. Although design of the dashboard is restricted, there are a number of applications that allow a user to incorporate and upload content, including collaboration with people through discussions and blog entries.
LinkedIn – A business providing consulting services, coaching or a practice fulfilling a professional need, then LinkedIn is a network to get plugged into. With over 60M users, predominately business professionals, provides the the channel to engage, empower and establish a brand across the nation.
Merchant Circle – A business with a storefront or a restaurant can build a dashboard and attract an audience through many of the platform’s features, including a blog and posting a coupon.
MySpace – For those immersed in the entertainment or music industry, including event planning, consider using MySpace. It is an established network of over 130M, open to ages 13 and up. The global platform allows for customization of profiles (including HTML/CSS) to change the general appearance of the page. Additionally, the applications are phenomenal from event countdowns to music/video uploads.
These social network sites have one feature in common, the ability to add a status update of “what you are doing” or “working on”. And by coupling one of the above with “Twitter”, are a start to monetizing the business brand with little to no dollars to put down but require the investment of your time. Being actively involved in the network(s) is key!
No matter what the industry, the art of selling applies to attracting customer interest. By exercising influence rather than hard core selling, a natural flow of followers and/or network contacts will build a trustworthy audience and customer base. Once capital has been established, go ahead and invest in that website!