Engaging with the world over the internet can be a challenging task for businesses. Growing up in a world dominated by spam, scams, and advertisements, many people on the internet really aren’t very interested in engaging with companies or content that is trying to sell them something.
That doesn’t have to stop your business from engaging consumers over the internet, however. It just means that your content needs to be first about what they want, and second about what you want.
Making Your Website A Resource
One of the best ways to get people to share your website in social media and to post links on their blogs is to have truly useful, reliable content. Most businesses require a high level of expertise in something. Use that to create interesting infographics.
I’m not saying to give away your trade secrets, but we live in the age of internet arguments and self-education. If you are the website with the best bird and deer migration maps, your sporting goods store is going to get more attention and generate more interest than your boring competitor.
Give Your Guests A Voice
Don’t just use your company blog as an advertising platform. Just posting articles by yourself about how great you think you are isn’t the way to make customers feel like taking part. Share interesting and useful information that shows that your business is made of people, not corporate worker drones.
Sticking to the sporting goods example, you can do this by writing content about your own fishing experiences, maybe giving up some of your good fishing spots, and by inviting readers to submit their own stories for you to publish.
You can also hold contests for blog owners in your niche for opportunities to be featured on your website. Choose the best backpacking story or hunting advice article and award the blog owner with a link from your domain.
You could also create instructional or humorous YouTube videos, or challenge customers to make them, and post the best ones on your website. It’s a win/win. You get interesting content for your website, the user is actively engaged, and they get the internet fame they so desperately crave.
Create A Professional Website
Your website should be capable of complex tasks, and preferably mobile compatible. This won’t be helpful until you have content that people actually want to see and talk about, but it will make your content more effective. Building your website on a content management system like WordPress isn’t a good idea.
It’s easy to use and there are lots of plugins, but as a professional company who can hopefully afford someone who is PHP literate, you will be able to create more interesting and engaging features using something like Drupal. Not to mention the security. You don’t want visitors to come to your website to be greeted by a malware warning. No amount of cats is going to make having their credit card information stolen from your server better.
If you create an easily navigable website with engaging content that your customer base wants to see, where they feel like they have their own voice and can be part of the community, they will come, and they won’t want to leave.