Friday, September 25, 2009

Marketing to customers with a phone number that lacks vanity

A standard telephone keypad.Image via Wikipedia

I believe it's pretty common for companies to use telephone numbers that when the numbers are converted to letters actually spell words that cleverly help customers remember that phone number when needed. These types of telephone numbers are called vanity numbers or phonewords.

This article considers the fact that you are considering the use of your telephone phone number that DOES NOT have a hidden when translated (lacks vanity), but you want to use your telephone number to market your business.

So now you ask.
Where can you find examples of a partial word, an acronym, abbreviation, or an alphanumeric combination being used to increase memorability and increase response rates to marketing?

First you should know why so much vanity.
Many companies use these phone numbers on radio, television, print, outdoor, etc. as they are proven to increase response rates by 30-60%

So you know now that I'm talking about phone numbers like 1-800-FLOWERS or 1-800-BUSINESS or 1-800-CONTACTS... Okay... I think you've got this part down.

Now let's see how you can take your marketing to the next level. Maybe your phone number doesn't have to be so inflated pride in oneself at all.

Let's think about this a minute.
Vanity numbers or Phonewords came about before the cellular phone and the Internet. And users or marketers had radio, print advertising and word-of-mouth marketing to spread the phonewords with vanity (pun intended). Anyway, the point here is the points of contact with consumers was limited.

Here comes the whammy.
We have the Internet now and Cellular phones that do most of the connecting for us. So why not use your telephone number for your website address? Look, you may have worked or are working for a company now where half of your email address is the companies name. So?

If you starting a business and everyone knows your cell phone number; use your cell phone number as your website address. Only make since. If your a Real Estate Agent with the name John and your phone number is 202-701-9393 (which has no vanity or phoneword), people would visit your website at:

Things that make you say humm?
Let's take it a step further. With regard to Realtor John... your email address would be: john@2027019393

And as normal.
Your still John now... and people call you at 202 701 9393

Where you going, there's more!
When anyone gives out your phone number, they are also dishing out your website address and part basically your email address at the same time. There are still situations where we write down information... like phone numbers and website addresses. It's also normal that you will only be able to find a small piece of paper to write on. Using your phone number as a catch-all, 3 amigo, you'll not need as big a scrap to scribe.

We only use letters (domain names) for website addresses because it makes it easier for humans to remember. However if you work very closely with clients like Real Estate Realtors, Insurance Agents, Personal Trainers, etc.; you could benefit from this marketing edge.

You may be asking, how will people I don't know find me if they don't know my phone number? The answer is; you will also register a domain name with words as normal. You could even mask your phone number url so when people go to it, the domain name with the words is displayed in the browser.

Example: you website address is but when people get your your website they would see the domain name with words that you also registered, let's say it's

This is called masking... and there are no negative aspects to harm your website or the FCC. Just make sure you or your webguy or webgirl setup your masking properly and if you are forwarding to a different domain name... make sure you domain is set as 301 permanent redirect.Link
You've just learned how to use your telephone number to secure 3 points of contact and they are:
  1. How to use a telephone number as your Email Address
  2. How to use a telephone Number as your Web Site Domain Name with or without masking
  3. How Telephone Numbers can be your Email, Website, Phone Number that all lead back to you.
This is Gibron T. Williams, Head Honcho at Oevae Marketing Consultants and these are my opinions.
Find oevae marketing consultants on the first page of Google when you search for: the best marketing consultants or the best marketing consultants in the world
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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Do you need business cards or website first?

This is a question I hear from time-to-time from small business owners and start-ups. You can actually have your cake and eat it too. Here's how.
This article is for those of you who have some knowledge of conducting business using business cards without a website and the opposite - conducting business with a website and no business cards. Then there are those of you who need both.
Either is fine and useful in the right marketing arena. I've used a few questions and answers to help you see if you need business cards now that you have a website or if you need a website if doing business with cards already works. 

I have a website but I don't have business cards. What can I do? You can conduct business online without giving out a business card to get people to visit your website. Before you go out and have business cards designed and printed, look for websites that allow you to build online business listings, and offer you marketing tools to increase your business connections. Go to websites like,, Google Local Business Center, Yahoo Local Listing,, etc. These are just a very few so jump on the search engines and start listing your business online now. People browse for local business reviews on every topic you can imagine. Choose the listing that best fits your business. Now go out and have at least 100 business card printed so you have another channel to drive traffic to your website. Best of all many of these business listings are free. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true. It probably is. 

 I have business cards. When should I get my website? With the saturation of text messaging and email, it's very easy to pass along the phone number of your favorite salon to your friends. It takes about 1 minute. You can even send them the salon website address and name of your hairstylist if you want. So why do a business card design and printing for nothing? The truth is there are times when you don't have your cell phone or computer under your fingertips - or should I say you should think twice. A wedding is not a great place to do business, and being on your cell phone is even worse. So if you choose the lesser of the two; go with the business card pass over texting your business info. Since you have a channel for telling people about your business with your business card, now is the time you can add a website address to your business card. You can gain information by having a simple form on your website, update potential clients on new offers or innovations in your industry. Your website can help you tell people about the benefit of conducting business with your company. Your website need not be more than 1 or 2 pages to add value to your brand. It's perfectly fine to conduct business when you have business cards but no website. Keep in mind that a website will offer your company additional exposure and potential for winning new customers. So it's really up to you when and if you want to turn up the volume. Take it one day at a time and make your best-educated decision after your research. 

I have a website. Why do I need business cards anyway? Business cards are a great way to advertise and market your business or push more people to your website. They can help you give people a glimpse of what your business can do. You can start building your brand's mood with different colors and images that represent or back up what you have just vocalized. The business card can be passed from one recipient to a third party. Most importantly the business card allows you more opportunity to give something physical and they are a powerful way to increase referrals to your small business. 

The best answer in my opinion is to go ahead and knock-out both at the same time. Have business cards printed and your website design at the same time – if at all possible. If you receive your business cards first, don't hold back on handing out your cards if your website is not finished. You may be thinking that potential customers will go to your website and see a big-fat goose egg, zero, nothing, nada, zilch, zip. To keep this from happening, tell your web guy to add a small statement to your website about your company that tells visitors how to communicate with you while your site is being "updated." Never say "under construction." Nobody wants to hear that their dinner is almost ready and that's what "under construction" sounds like. Additionally, your visitors will be hungry for information (the main purpose of the Internet anyway) and you need to at least give them a nibble. Chick-Fil A does a great job at sampling. Take note and use the same principle.

This is Gibron T. Williams, Head Honcho at Oevae Marketing Consultants and these are my opinions.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

What do Tags mean to your website?

A tag cloud with terms related to Web 2.Image via Wikipedia

The first thing Google tells you about meta Tags is that Google does not use the keywords meta tag in web ranking. So this article is more at understanding Tags and crafting Tags for your website in a way that will help your website communicate better with the search engines so people can find your website faster and with less effort in doing so.

So that you don't read my entire soapbox yet guide to generating great tags; here's the list of topics I will cover:

Proper Title Tags, Proper Description Tags, Proper Keywords Tags, Proper Heading Tags, Page Content, Duplicate Content/Tags, Word Density, and end with Web Site Analysis.

If this all sounds like a foreign language to you. Don't bug out yet. You should at least familiarize yourself with these topics as a small business owner. These topics are very important aspects of website development that make you or make it very hard for you to have the positive results desire.

So grab a cold beverage and about 20 minutes to refresh your knowledge about Tags, learn something you didn't know about tags, or make sure you know what you're talking about when it comes to Tags and your website.

Here you go.

Well-constructed Title Tags
Well-constructed title tags contain the main keyword for the page, followed by a brief description of the page content. It will be less than 65 characters and avoid using stop words such as: a, if, the, then, and, an, to, etc. Your title tag should also be limited to the use of alphanumeric characters, hyphens, and commas.

Good Description Tags
Good description tags contain information about the page's content and persuade search engine users to visit your web site. They should be between 25 and 35 words in length.

Proper Keywords Tags
Proper keywords meta tag should contain between 5-10 keywords or keyword phrases that are also found in page content.

Proper Heading Tags
Each page of your site should use at least the H1 heading tag for the search engines that examine it when crawling your the H1 heading tag for the search engines that examine it when crawling your site.

Duplicate Content/Tags
Because search engines treat web sites as a grouping of pages and not a single entity, each page on your site should be unique so that the tags and content differ between each page. Doing so increases the number of pages that will rank.

Word Density
Pages should contain 300 to 700 words of unique and descriptive content. A page's meta tag keywords should also be those that occur most frequently on the page.

Web Site Analysis
A robust analysis (including keyword usage, spiderability, and Robots.txt files and Robots Meta tags) of your website's strengths and possible weaknesses helps you remain search engine friendly. Monitoring your website analytics aka performance will help you get detailed, site-specific results faster.

That's it.
Now REMEMBER not to be discouraged if you don't see instant results. This is not minute rice we are cooking. No, knowing what Tags means you can make sure your website is and remains search engine friendly. Knowing your Tags also helps you build your online brand with maximum impact. So take your time and make subtle adjustments and monitor your website analytics.

This is Gibron T. Williams, Head Honcho at Oevae Marketing Consultants and these are my opinions.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

How marketing research helps consumer communications.

Sometimes all you need is a little help.
There have been several opportunities aka experiences in my marketing tenure that groomed and molded me into possibly one of the best marketing consultants in the world. I believe it and Google does too. Search Google for: the best marketing consultants in the world I'm just saying. There have been many times that I've not been as well versed on a topic or two. Yes, it is true, I don't know everything despite the kudos above. These opportunities have opened the door for learning and adventure. Most of the time I will need extra research on a topic that concerns achieving the goal of my clients. So I'm not troubled when I sacrifice my personal time to get a better grip on a topic. I remember learning something about how the best lenses in the world are created by Essilor and another time how the video would mesh with a large Nikon Pro and Nikon consumer web development projects. With the computer keyboard in front of you and the world at your fingertips, one can find just about anything someone has put there for all to see, read, and hear. I won't count the ability of touch screen as this is like petting a gorilla at the zoo behind the glass. It ain't real. I have a confidential project in development with regard to smell. I'll get back to you on that at a later date. Today you can start a business and start selling or print some business cards and dish them within a week. So we already know about the abilities to find information there. 

Go to the library and research the old frontier (books). Open a book and read more in-depth about the company that trumps yours. Learn how they got there and evaluate where they are today. Visit the book store and find a magazine from another country that talks about your industry and learn how the people in that country respond to industry changes, new products, or services. Read the annual reports of Fortune 500 companies and keep watch on new companies entering the market. Find out how they communicate with consumers and make alliances with other companies and countries. Consult a professional in your industry or visit a trade show to watch how people respond to your competitors. This means if you want to open D'oh Donut Shop, then you need to know about dough, flour, sugar, and service. You need to go around to the world looking at donut brands and how consumers like to eat them. You want to make sure your donuts are not just different but special in a substantial way that people are gonna love them. 

Take this information and imagine where your company would fit. If it could fit? What would make your company special? Focus for a short time on what others cannot do and why they aren't doing it. It could be that your business model is a perfect fit. You will soon be bumping into unknown characteristics in your industry. Again we've reached a point when some of my clients have crash-landed. Recoverable, but still a crash with frustrations and anxiety about make the best choice for the big investments. An investment of time and money. Since time cannot be replaced, they come to Oevae for a little help. Because sometimes all you need is a little help. DIY marketing is not dead you know!? That's it. The more you know about your industry, from where it came, who is in it, who evolved from it, and who dissolved in it helps your ability to communicate with consumers. 

This is Gibron T. Williams, Head Honcho at Oevae Marketing Consultants and these are my opinions.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Do you really need business cards today?

We recently scored a gig for The Wedding Architect who's an outta-this-world wedding planner. I mean this guy has got it. I'm not trying to score kudos because I personally have shared my thoughts, opinions, suggestions, advice, and the thoughts of others with him. So the air is clear in that area. Ricardo Tomas aka The Wedding Architect is the b. o. m. b. Okay, now really! You're probably thinking, this is supposed to be about business cards. It is. Hang with me. My marketing company has landed 3, 4, 5 maybe clients because of Ricardo's branding. Most say his brand is really busy or that the website has some nice Flash programming. And others comment on his business cards. Note: 80 percent of Ricardo's business is generated face to face. As it should in his line of business. This includes referrals from his past clients. So this means? The Wedding Architect's business cards are dangerously important to the wedding planner, wedding consultant, wedding professional, and wedding industry as a whole. If you're thinking about entering the wedding planner industry make sure your business cards have the power to communicate your style and professionalism in less than 5 seconds. 

Why five seconds to read a business card? Think about the last time you had a conversation with someone you found to be interested in what you had to offer or your new business. This is a person that you've never seen before in your life and chances are you may never see this person again. Now then. While standing, sitting, lounging... whatever it is you do when you communicate, at some point in time you pass your business card(s) to this person of interest. After you hand your card over, the person receiving the card normally (hopefully) says "thanks" or "okay, great" and then looks at your card for 5 seconds tops. For this reason, your business cards need to be the shiznit (great). Kudos to Snoop Dogg with the smirk and the braids tight for the Shizzolator. Anyway, that's only part of the solution. Knowing you can use a business to capture attention like a wedding planner might do. But what does it take or where do you get business cards? Well, there's FedEx Office (formerly FedEx Kinko's, formerly, Kinko's), Office Max, Office Depot, Staples, Speedy Print, Overnight Prints, MOO, 4by6, and a host of other business card printers online and probably not far from where you are right now. 

What about adding the Wow factor to the business card? Who would have thought in today's world we would still be using business cards? Please. As long as we have magazines or until cell phones are free. The staple business card will be around. The point here is that you'll most likely need a business card if your industry uses them (business cards) as a mode in which business can be conducted. However, I doubt that Michael Phelps really needs a business card to promote his business. He's a pretty well know guy. I think he's doing okay in the branding department. But not everyone can have it like an Olympic Gold Medalist with 120 of your faces on isle #12 at the grocery store, ear to ear on the Wheaties box. No. Not everyone has that much exposure. Take advantage of the business card in a positive way. Not pushy, shrewd but not hurting anyone... as you would normally do while attending a business conference, at your child's parent-teacher meeting, during a business mixer or happy hour, while talking to some random guy in-line at Wal Mart while holding a box of "unmentionables" under your arm. You know you have a great business card when people compliment you about them. Come on, complements are normally for great hair and or a great meal. Receiving a compliment on a business card that is only 2 inches by 3.5 inches and just a bit thinner than a time, that's a big deal. Business cards are very important when used to strategically marketing your brand. When you use your business cards as a method of building your key relationships or praying for that next big referral. Stay consistent and work on your plan. And business cards a part of your marketing plan, if you communicate with people, face to face for business. Leave your business card with your tip at a nice restaurant, with people you meet at the gym or yoga studio. My business card was the most expensive way I could afford to pay for when I first started Oevae back in 1999. I had a mound of creativity and many different cards for the first few years while I molded the final brand in 2001 and as it is today. In the beginning, I knew that black and white was the least expensive printing so I could cut the cost on printing and today it's all the same. Back then I needed some way of holding my prospect's attention for more than 5 seconds. 

Yeah, I need more than 5 seconds. When I planned to make Oevae Marketing Consultants, I need to express what our creative marketing was about and tell it quickly with something they would taste later. I need my business card to cut through a steak. So this has to lead many new clients and now friends our way. So I may be slightly biased in my opinion. But again, the business card orders keep coming our way. Our clients keep telling me how much people admire their business cards and where did they get them printed. My vote is yes. You really do need business cards today. 

This is Gibron T. Williams, Head Honcho at Oevae Marketing Consultants and these are my opinions.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

How to add substance and meaning to your logo

I don't remember a client asking me design a logo that has no meaning or real substance. No, most clients who don't already have a logo, they want a logo that is memorable, unique, and meaningful. There are also a list of questions that I ask to help us move closer to our goals.

It's not mandatory that your logo look like a dog just because you have own a company by the name: Dog Houses Plus. No. You can use a bone or some other characteristic close to your product offerings.

You want to ask yourself what's unique or special about Dog Houses Plus. It could be that the basis for your logo could be hidden in a fine detail. Are your dog houses over sized? Are your dog houses round or made for cold weather locations?

As you brainstorm what you want your logo to stand for think about this really cool example of a logo with meaning.

Just do it.
That's right. You can search the Internet and find out who invented the Nike Swoosh. Before doing that; what is the Nike logo. Is it the imprint of the heel of a runner? Is it the curve you see when looking at the black oval track? The Nike logo really isn't anything you would use on a regular basis... unless.

Stay with me now.
Unless you are a The principal conductor of an orchestra or opera. If you don't already know... the beat of the music is typically indicated with the conductor's right hand, with or without a baton.

It gets better.
The conductors hand traces a shape in the air in every bar (measure) depending on the time signature, indicating each beat with a change from downward to upward motion. The image show is the most common beat pattern, as seen from the conductor's point of view the principal conductor while conducting a beat pattern for 2/4, 2/2, or fast 6/8 time. I've highlighted some keywords that best represent Nike.

Look now at the illustration at the beginning of this article and you can see the Nike logo plain as day, nearly a carbon copy. The number 1 is the starting point and 2 is the ending point or motion from the conductors hand.

There you go.
Now it's your turn to orchestra your thought with regard to your company and the logo you're currently using. Is it meaningful. Does it have a history or a depth? Will it provoke conversations that lead to recognition for your branding efforts and hopefully even more in sales?

History says that the Nike logo represents the wing in the famous statue of the Greek Goddess of victory, Nike, who was the source of inspiration for many great and courageous warriors. So this puts a damper on my opinion for the brands logo. If Nike hasn't figured out that they (Nike) would benefit more from using my description by now... Well.

This is another breaking-point whereby I've earned many clients. Some people (and it perfectly okay) just have other things to do with the brain and trying to design a logo is below the bottom of the list. But, you still want a great logo right? Then think about this article before contacting your logo designer so that you have template or bread crumb that leads you to the logo with substance.

This is Gibron T. Williams, Head Honcho at Oevae Marketing Consultants and these are my opinions.

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Monday, September 14, 2009

Keywords: The best marketing consultants in the world.

Graphic representation of a minute fraction of...Image via Wikipedia

Keywords keywords.
What is all the fuss about these keywords you've heard about?
It's really easy. The same words you would use to find some information on the world wide web.

That's the simple part. Now that you and everyone building with a website knows, we have a problem Houston. If you are ABC Moving, you can bet that some other brand like ABCD Movers will have similar keywords. So you want to direct your attention to the mild differences and keywords that someone might use (type in Google, Yahoo, search engine) to find your company online over the next company offering similar products

Example: Open your browser and go to Then type: the best marketing consultants in the world

What did you get? Well I can tell you that my company is there on the first page of Google. Oevae Marketing Consultants is my brand design and creative marketing firm. We consult small business owners to share what is possible within the world of marketing and brand development. It's nice to see how choosing the right keywords for your website can make it or break it for you. So be very critical about the keywords you opt to promote an staple your brand name.

As part of our Search Engine Optimation we also own the domain name TheBestMarketing And we will continue to make like Charloette's Web to maintain our brand name recognition.

Think now about your brand and how you want to be found on the Internet. What frame of mind will people looking for your product be in? Will people be in a hurry, looking for the best, trying to dyi, planning, price hunting? Keep thinking and challenging.

Your keywords are the door to your website. Make them fit your brand and build around your brand.

Here's a bone.
Search Google: Wonder Wheel
Read the details of what it is and what it can help you do for your business.

Oevae offers you a really easy to use Search Engine Visiblity Tool that takes the hard work out of finding the right keywords for your website at under $30 a year. It's pretty powerful too, but the biggest bonus is No technical skills needed! Here are a few bullet points from or other website World Wide Web Window:

  • Bring more traffic to your Web site
  • Increase customers
  • Get your site listed on major search engine rankings
  • Contact Manager (CRM) included FREE
This is Gibron T. Williams, Head Honcho at Oevae Marketing Consultants and these are my opinions.
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Sunday, September 13, 2009

Build brand recognition with your email account

The rationale behind this post is so simple yet strong in the application – understand how the current email provider you are using can make or break your brand recognition. 

You may be using MSN HotMail (relaunched Hotmail as Outlook), Yahoo, Gmail, MailChimp, and the list goes on.  One thing you and my clients want is the ability to tell everybody about your business and what you can do now.  For example, let's say your name is Marc Zookerburg and you have a business by the name Fadebook your email address should be something like
Configure your email signature so your logo is present in each email you send.  This will help recipients recognize your brand and associate the topics you discuss with your small business.
When you send out a mass email to all of your friends, telling them about a new product. Sure, your friends (warm market) will recognize your name and email if you've communicated with them recently.  That's great, and to be expected.  You certainly want your friends to open your email and learn all about your product and hopefully make a purchase.  But, a time will come when you need more customers outside of your "warm market" that lead to brand advocates because they love your product and all that it stands for, so they tell everyone they know.

Align your domain name with your business email account

People you don't know about your brand, won't recognize or consider a Yahoo email address as an established brand for what you intend to offer.  So what should you do?  Make sure your web developer aligns your domain name and business email account.  Doing this will allow you to send your individual or mass email to prospects and friends using "" instead of ""  So you say, yeah that's close to a no-brainer.  I kinda already know that already.  The problem is keeping your commitment to your brand and marketing by making sure that "" is the primary email you use. It can be difficult to make a major change from your free email address to your business. And for this, there is also a fix. Just make sure your website developer configures your new email to automatically forward your old email to your old email address. 

How is brand recognition increased with email? 

Each and every time someone receives an email from you they will see your company name (brand) time after time, again and again, one after the other!  Like little children with toys, we see something and we put it away in our minds.  A simple thing. Not the rent or the mortgage. It's paramount that you capitalize on the opportunity and reinforce brand recognition. When people think of your brand and grab the keyboard or mobile phone to find your website, your email address is what they will recall... "What's that email address... I want to tell my friend about that website to see if they like it?"  You wouldn't drive a Volkswagen and buy a Ford keychain holder.  If you are sporting the wrong brand, don't worry change about attracting new customers.

This is Gibron T. Williams, Head Honcho at Oevae Marketing Consultants and these are my opinions.

Make a brand difference.™

Saturday, September 12, 2009

How many pages should be in a good website?

The number of pages on your website can be a minimum of 1 and there is no maximum that I've heard about. However, I do remember learning about a large number in 3rd grade called Googolplex – this is long before there was a Google, aka Alphabet.

Now let's get real. 

I ask my clients "why are you building a website?" If you think about the question it may seem a bit simple at first... the answer might be that you want to sell some new crayon that tastes like M&M's or new reversible running shoes? The deeper point we are trying to get to is what will it take to get whomever to do what you want. 

Ask yourself a few questions:
  1. Will your product or service take a bunch of explaining?
  2. Do you have a product or service a fit for everybody or a select few?
  3. Are you wanting your website to amaze, tease and tickle minds?
  4. Should you give website visitors everything you've got?

This list can go on for some time... and you want to explore as many windows of opportunity as possible. Let's move now. Before deciding how many pages should be on a good website, you must have good content. Content that makes visitors do what YOU do when you find something on the Internet. You bookmark the page or send the information on to a friend or family member. If you're at work, you may even share the new find with a co-worker. The website becomes a point of reference for whatever topic you need. 

Your website should be worthy of the consumers time – anyone who knows much about website design, knows the importance of unique and relevant content. 

A big mistake. When you create content for your like in hopes to be like some other website you've seen. Do not do this. This is a no-no. That would be your first step away from being unique. Wrong direction. Yes, I hear you... there are companies online that you probably admire and that's a good thing. This means you do have some marbles rolling around upstairs. You may even sell the same product. But taking it to the point/mission of being a copycat doesn't work on the Internet. Oh, you can fake it for a while, but soon enough the search engines will find out you're a ghost and this means it's back to the drawing board for you. The search engines no longer find you unique and more like a Twinkie. One thing you can do to be unique is Yourself. I mean you want to be original at a whole new level. Take your imagination on a road trip. Think about the dumbest way you could sell your product. Think of the worst customers you could have. Think what you would do if your product was the only thing on earth you had left. Imagine what your product would be in 20 years. These may seem like hard places to go in your mind, but forcing answers to imaginary situations has brought every good invention I know about. 

So how many pages should your website contain?

1 - 2 - 10 - 50? You will soon realize the answer to this question comes to you when you know what you want to say, how you want to say it, and if it will make you famous? Ever since Minute Rice, nobody wants to wait for a cotton-picking thing. With this in mind, I suggest that you not waste my time telling me how much better your tires are. I (website visitor) want it now and I want it to be good for me now. If you're an accounting firm... I better feel very confident and please don't puzzle me with a bunch of verbiages... Heck, I only want to know how I can spend my money and save more of it at the same time. Can you do that? If you could. I would do business with you in an instant like everyone lined up behind me to do the same thing. 

It's time to start thinking. Do you know who would even want to visit a business like yours on the Internet? Maybe you have a car was. Why would you need a website? Well, maybe you want customers to go to your website to type in a code from the receipt to download a special deal... Free Wax anybody? 

Yes, your website can be just one page. Maybe that page is one long page? Who says you have to go to a "next" page... maybe scroll down? 

The sure thing is you must tell visitors who you are, what you do, and what they can do because of you. This is something you can accomplish in a total of one to 4 pages. Think about it this way... if you search let's say Google for a really cool ax called and find one called AXEED, you learn that it actually has a heating element in the handle that keeps your hand warm – that's pretty cool. So you search Google again, but this time you type "ax with a warm handle" and you get a list of websites on the first page of Google about similar products... rarely do you go beyond the 3 or fourth page of results.  Instead, you will type in a little different search this time... "hot handle ax brand."  Again, you have a list of websites with links to pages... like the previous search, you don't go past the 3 or fourth page before your change your keyword search. Using this methodology, why would your website be any different? If a visitor lands on your website and it doesn't get the point across (encourage them to learn more) in 3 to 4 pages... it's Bye-bye. 

This is Gibron T. Williams, Head Honcho at Oevae Marketing Consultants and these are my opinions.

Make a brand difference™

Friday, September 11, 2009

How many years do you register a domain?

If you've had your business online since 1999 or before, this topic may not be of great concern to you. 

However, I do know that there are many out there who have no idea how long a domain name should be registered. The truth is there's no strict rule that says you must register for more than 1 year. Of course, there are deals available that offer discounts based on the number of years you choose to register. 

It's likely you will pay less if you register for more years. In a slow economy, saving money can be a real treat. What you may not know is registering your domain for more years (paying upfront for 10 years rather than only 1 year) can help you secure the respect of the search engines. Why? As I do when consulting my clients; let me tell you a short story to help you understand the logic: 

Here goes... 

All those with the gift of having two good working eyes have seen small business owners driving around town with magnetic signs on utility trucks, SUVs, and all car types really. Now with this in mind, let's say a perfect stranger pulled her (Nene) vehicle next to yours at pump #7... As you stand there pumping your gas, you notice a magnetic sign on Nene's car that reads Financial Planner, Take The Cap Off Your Income! Call Today! Your first thought might be that Nene might have a special strategy for helping you take control of your finances, right? Well, this may be true. However, there is another question. That question might be: Magnetic signs are not exactly a big commitment. I mean one could keep a stack of magnetic signs in the trunk and change town-to-town or state-to-state. Sounds a bit like selling snake oil. You want to conduct business with a company that shows a real commitment - a company that appears to be stable. Now before some of you get your shorts in a knot... I do know that there are perfect reasons and situations where/why a magnetic sign should be used over something better (vehicle wraps, etc.). But what I'm talking about here is the Internet where you can start a company in 5 minutes and dissolve in an additional 5 minutes. So the risks are much higher. Unlike Nene who can have a brief discussion with and ask for her business card, such options are not available online. 

So here it is... 

Let's replace Nene with the name of your business and I'm a search engine trying to determine the worthiness of your company. If you're a business with a domain name registered for 1 year. I might assume that you are new to the world wide web and you don't think you'll be around in 366 days. On the other hand, you may be a business with a domain name registered for 5 years. This might tell me that although you could be new to the world wide web, you may have a plan, you may have joint commitments, you may be in a joint venture or you've planned to keep your information available for a decent amount of time - I can index your company in my listing and not worry about house cleaning for at least 5 years.

You may also want to consider registering multiple domain names to:

  • Keep your competition from registering a domain name that draws customers to them instead of you.
  • Promote the different products and services you offer.
  • Drive more traffic to your Web site.
  • Enjoy more opportunities to market to, and be listed on, search engines.
  • Create distinct advertising strategies that reach different target markets.
  • Provide customers more ways to find you when searching the Internet.
  • Capture common misspellings of your domain name, instead of sending visitors to an error page.
  • Protect your brand and online identity from those who may have unsavory purposes.

That's it. 

You can save money when you register your domain names with longer terms and be seen as a company with a commitment to your product, services, and existence. 

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Thursday, September 10, 2009

Hosting, Email, and Domain Names Unite

Everybody likes convenience. No
brainer, right? Well, this is something you’ve got to remember when managing your business on the Internet. 

Like mobile phone carriers that offer you Text Messaging Plans, Data Packages, and more. The company you choose to host your company website should also be the company that provides your domain name and email accounts. I haven't run into anyone yet who would use T-Mobile as their cell phone carrier and then buy a Text Messaging plan from Apple. So why would you register your domain at Godaddy and host your website at Wix? Internet service providers unlike cell phone carriers, actually allow you to mix Internet domain registrar and web hosting with different providers. What you don’t know is there 3 very good reasons why you should start thinking ahead on how you manage your business online. 

Why bundle your Internet domain registrar and web hosting

I know the answer to this based on 20+ years of experience in helping clients do everything from creating, registering, and retrieving domain names to hosting and managing multiple email accounts. My findings will give you good reasons to pick one safe, reliable, and affordable Internet domain registrar and web hosting provider that helps you manage your online presence more efficiently –  solid reasoning to integrate Hosting, Email, and Domain which will enable you to make webmaster-like decisions when managing your business online. It's not only smart for your business it could help you from tainting your brand experience.

Let’s start with passwords 

These little jumbled letters, capital letters, lower case letters, special symbols, limited characters, and sticky phrases are sometimes remembered and most often forgotten.  Passwords can be a stinker to keep up with, to say the least. Don’t be in a hurry or have a type-o when entering your password, this will most likely get you locked out of your account for a few hours or have you dialing technical support and listening to elevator music and artificial intelligence for several of your valuable minutes. So what do you do? Create fewer passwords. Simply put: fewer passwords equal fewer headaches.

The same goes for managing your Internet domain registrar and web hosting With multiple Internet solution providers, you can bet your last dollar that each will have its own uniquely safe password scheme that you must use to create. This means having your hosting, email, email marketing, and domain name divided among different Internet domain registrar and web hosting providers (Godaddy, Wix, Squarespace, etc.). You will also have an equal number of passwords to retain. That’s bad news. So remember to use one Internet service provider that with everything you need. 

Now let’s talk about Email

You should be using business email to do just that – business. And when it comes to keeping commitments and communicating with your prospects and clients, you better make sure your email and website are properly aligned. If you don’t already know, email is one of the easiest ways for outsiders to interfere with your business operations. So you might choose to separate your hosting provider and email because you think one company offers more safety than the next which might be true? If and when you have a technical problem with your email, hosting, or domain; having the same technical support for all three keeps you from dialing three different numbers searching for the answer that fixes your problem.

If you have hosting at provider A and email accounts at provider B, each will have limited ability to track activity from beginning to end. So you are left with trying to balance who’s right and who’s almost right with who doesn’t have a clue which is normally you at The End. The thing here to remember is the benefits of learning the habits, abilities, and response time of one Internet Services provider Technical Support Team rather than spending half your day stitching together the suggestions of multiple representatives. 

Last but not least is domain names 

Your URL aka Domain Name, aka Website Address is the single most important part of your business online that keeps you in the know. No domain name. No online business. If you fail to keep up with renewal dates, some other business becomes the new you. 

When you’ve registered your domain name with a different company than your hosting provider or email provider, you have more email notifications to monitor. You have or will most likely acquire your domain name, hosting account, and email provider on different dates. Rest assured that your renewal notifications will respect these dates. This means you could miss an important email and kiss a great domain name goodbye if you miss the renewal date. Limiting your domain registrar and web hosting to one provider means you get one consistent billing system, using one credit card with a company you trust. 

My clients have come from all walks of life and made the best decisions based on the information provided to them during their startup phase. integrates your domain registration, web hosting, and email, making it easier for them to manage their online business.

Make a brand difference.™

Friday, August 21, 2009

Avoid Web Design Disasters

The information you send to the person designing your website is your first step toward learning more about creating your company's brand. Your designer will need you to answer questions so that they can fine-tune a cost and action plan for the website design and development; you can start your website design with a single page.

Web design companies you may have asked about website design and development, generally say it's the number of pages that determines the cost of a website. This is really a novice way of looking at the Internet. Not long ago technology was different and the learning curve for those hesitant to learn has enabled this way of thinking to linger. It's changing as I type this article, to be honest. 

Creating high-quality website content is paramount

Today's technology allows users to have incredible control over website content, thus allowing for interactivity and personalization - ownership of brands they believe in and trust with minimal investment.  If your product was an apple, you would use various avenues to get customers to buy.  Your apples must be worth the bite – this could include affordable, tasty/appealing, nearby, fresh, and offer consumers a great experience for the bite. With this in mind, a web designer can usually design and develop your website using a combination of the most desired features that express your vision of excellence and show you ways of drawing/pushing traffic to your website on one page or many pages. 

We all know despite the size of a restaurant, it's the food, the service, and the price – experience that determines who returns.  Rarely do we return to a disorganized business with lousy communication, and concerns about safety.  The same is true for your website. Your website design/development should include discussions about hosting, email, branding, photography, copy, alignment with search engine protocols, and analytics features that tell you details about website visitors and their interactivity, and the website traffic flow.  A basic website often includes a homepage aka landing page, contact page/form, photography/videos, an about us page, information about services or products, and FAQs. 

Website production time could be 2 weeks for a small micro website or 45-60 days for a high-end website with advanced user experience or eCommerce.  The web design firm should allow time for you to share the layout and website design concept with your business partners or peers.  Often the more bells and whistles or third-party integrations (widgets, plugins, e-commerce, etc.), and overall dynamics will determine your ultimate cost.  At you can scale your website dynamics over time with a custom marketing membership which allows you a low startup expense with a monthly payment. 

Using Website Templates

Think about vs., both have incredible depth and entirely different packaging. In the same way, try to avoid template websites if possible.  How do feel when you walk into a business and see someone wearing the same thing you are wearing?  The outfit that took you nearly an hour to decide to put together because you wanted to wear something unique to your personality?  Not good.  Who's wearing it best?  Template websites are the same way.  What makes your website unique if the last website your prospect visited looks just like yours?  There are online DIY website builders that are easy to use and allow you to use your own creativity if you have the time and patience.

If you have defined the number of topics you feel your website should cover and how you want visitors to communicate with you from the website, please explain this in detail to your web designer. In fact, this is really the person you want to convey your deepest aspirations and visions for your website. Sometimes with too many people involved details get lost or skewed.

Knowing your target date for completion will help the web design firm define its production timeline which should include benchmarks. Make certain you receive proofs prior to the programming so the development phase of your website sets sail in the right direction.  One of my strategic marketing friends Vincent Jackson with whom I've partnered on several projects calls this a "Brief" outline of your website goal and descriptions of necessary content. 

If you need any questions answered or information explained in greater detail, please call Oevae or comment on this article. It's normal that you allow a design agency or marketing firms like one or two days to produce your Web Development Agreement which should be easy to understand and in a language you truly understand on a single page. Keep a signed copy with your design company's signature to help secure your investment and avoid web design disasters.

Make a brand difference.™