Double Your Marketing – Redirect Your Content

Developing great content and doubling your marketing efforts go hand in hand. My clients know that I preach “There’s no shame in using it again!” It you own the rights to your original content (writing) you have first time publication rights, next time publication rights, and the right to use it again and again.

When I opened up Rolling Stone magazine I found a brilliant example of the “redirection” practice I’ve encouraged. RS is an established print publication much like the printed newsletter that some of my clients use and should continue to use when it works for their customers. RS has an index of excerpts from their online articles with links to read the complete article on their website.

A redirect from print to a website or blog achieves two powerful tasks. First, it trains your “paper” customers to start using the web where they can easily print, email, and forward your articles to others interested in the same subject, forward to directories like Digg.com, helping your message to propagate across the web.

The second accomplishment of redirecting content through a link is that you’ll be getting paper readers to your website for another marketing opportunity. The longer you embrace them in your paper or web content the longer you’ll hold them to complete a business transaction.

If your paper marketing is working for you then by all means don’t give it up. For those who have made the leap to Constant Contact or iContact for e-newsletters, consider adding excerpts with a link that leads your readers to your website or blog.

Type Matters

The beauty of content management systems (CMS) is that the website owner can make changes on their own. But what happens when a client feels the lure of a content management system to change more than the content? Snooty web designers often swap stories about the disasters created by clients when taking on this branding task through CMS.

Why is using all the bells and whistles so dangerous? Changing how your website looks, changes how it is perceived by the user. Seth Godin, author and marketing guru blogs, “If you send me a flyer with dated, cheesy or overused type, it’s like showing up in a leisure suit for a first date. If your website looks like Geocities or some scammy info marketer, I won’t even stay long enough to read it.” (Type Tells A Story http://bit.ly/6y19xF)

The transformation from sophisticated business website to something that says “low-brow” or “do-it-yourself” can happen quickly when a client changes fonts in a content management system. You can avoid looking like a light-weight or out-of-date online by following these suggestions from designer, Vanessa Wood.

  1. Follow Professional Advice:  If you’re using a professional designer it should be assumed you’ve vetted the designer and that they are versed in fonts, especially which fonts convey a business image and which don’t.
  2. Ask for Guidance.  Your designer can control fonts and colors within a content management system.  Have them recommend and set up fonts and font colors to be used in your blog or website content.
  3. Call Off the Circus. Too many font styles and too many colors can confuse or cheapen the appearance of a website, making an otherwise stylish site look “clowny”. If your designer has set up font styles be careful when choose additional fonts and new colors from the content management system.
  4. Avoid Font Blindness. Assume that some of the visitors to your website may have minor vision impairment. Steer away from too small fonts. Opt out of fonts on flashy colored backgrounds or ornately patterned backgrounds.
  5. Stick with the Tried and True. Sans serif fonts are easier to read online, black fonts on white backgrounds are easier to read and keep a clean design, not too small and not too large fonts imitate printed documents and are easier to read.  Choose Arial, Helvetica, and Verdana rather than Comic Sans or more casual fonts.

The Design to Spec solution. You can count on Design to Spec to create or update a website that will look good all the time, even when you edit it yourself!

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