Welcome to another episode of 7-Minute Marketing with Pam. My name is Pam Didner. I love sharing a little dose of B2B, digital, content marketing and sales enablement, seven minutes at a time.
Hard as it is to believe, even though I’ve only been working for myself for 4 years, I’ve just relaunched my website for the fourth time. That’s pretty much one relaunch per year. I am not talking about changing copy here and there. I am talking about a complete re-design of the website…
Here is the story of working on my website, full of drama and nightmares, and my takeaway.
I launched my first website in 2012. It was pretty much a blog and creative outlet. I was publishing my reflections and observations about life in general. It was not a business website and no clear value proposition about who I am and what I do.
Then, I completely redid my website in 2014 when I publish my first book, Global Content Marketing
As 2015 rolled around, I decided that I should sharpen the focus of my web presence to match my book, so I created globalcontent.marketing as the main site and migrated all my content to that site and kept the pdidner.wpengine.com site static. Frankly, I don’t think that was a right move. Hindsight is 20/20. What I should have done is to keep building my personal brand.
In 2016, I realized that I made the mistake. Focusing on pdidner.wpengine.com is the better thing to do. Also, I was thinking about writing my 2dn book. Having just the Globalcontent.marketing site just wouldn’t cut it. So, I redesigned PamDidner.com and moved all the content back. Again, this was a strategy change which directly impacted my website presence.
In 2017, I added courses, e-commerce capabilities, revamped speaking and other features, and change the design elements to make it more modern. It’s not a total re-launch, but it was still a massive change.
Now, with the arrival of my 2nd book, guess what? It’s time to redo my website with a newer look. I feel like I am remodeling a room to welcome my 2nd baby. In a way, it is. This time, the remodel was even more elaborate. I thought about my value propositions and I added professionally done videos. I also had the blog and podcast pages custom-coded for search categorization and to be more visually appealing.
Here are 3 quick lessons from launching and relaunching my website:
- Digital marketing can’t be static. It’s not something you can check off. Google updates its search algorithm constantly, WordPress is adding new features all the time. Your website needs to keep up with technology changes. You need to feed the monster and dress it up constantly. It’s work that never ends.
- A website is part of marketing outreach. Creating a website is easy, the challenging part is to tie subscriptions, downloads and offerings seamlessly to marketing automation, CRM, and other tools. That’s the hard part. I am constantly working on my workflow to improve the customer journey. It’s difficult and exhausting.
- Tie your website conversions to Analytics. I didn’t know this very well when launching the previous sites. I didn’t set up goals and UTM properly on Google Analytics. The best way to understand your website is to make sure that you define how you will measure conversations and success using whatever tools you choose. It requires a lot of thought.
OK, I kicked off the website launch meeting in April to anticipate the launch on 7/31. Well, it went live on 7/31, but certain design elements didn’t transfer, so my team took everything down. Ugh. My team worked through all the details and migration again and relaunched on 8/9. Once it was launched, we discovered more problems like the e-commerce features were not working properly and some images and video hadn’t transferred or links were broken over… The QA took 3-4 week and we are still making minor changes here and there. It just never ends.
Creating a seamless digital customer experience
Man, creating a seamless digital customer experience is easy to say, but hard to do. If you are not in the trenches, it’s hard for you to understand how much work goes on behind the scenes to make a website user-friendly and seamless.
As I said, the saga continues. Friends who know me well are putting a bet on when I will redo my website again. I really hope this website will last for a couple of years, but I know that’s wishful thinking. Something will come up and prompt me to redo my website again.
In the meantime, I am very pleased with the current website. My value proposition is clearer, I have solid offerings. Most importantly, I have a better understanding of who I am and what I can do.
Something about writing copy for my own website brings clarity to who I am. Writing is the best way to discover your inner self.
Ok, I am sure that you will hear more about my website plight in the future. For now, check out my website: www.pdidner.wpengine.com. I am very proud of my 5th makeover.
Again, send me your marketing questions or thoughts via Twitter @pamdidner
Be well. Until next time.