Marketing is Just Like Building a Home
I was challenged to find the connection to marketing and the building of a house, while still providing some valuable educational content. Did I succeed? You tell me. I believe the correlations are pretty spot on.
CONTENT MARKETINGMARKETING PLANINBOUND MARKETINGHOME PAGEWEBSITE DESIGNHOME BUILDING
I love a challenge. Several years ago, I wrote a blog about how inbound marketing had traits similar to activities at a farmers’ market. I mentioned that such relationships can be found in almost every aspect of human endeavor, as we are constantly marketing something to someone. I was challenged to find a connection with the building of a house and still provide some valuable educational content about marketing. Did I succeed? You tell me, I believe the correlations are pretty spot on.
As a marketer, you know that there are a million things that you need to be doing, seemingly all at once, to achieve marketing/sales success. The problem is, you have limited resources, and everyone is making demands on them. If you have any hope of being successful, it is imperative that you take control of your time and focus on the most important tasks each day.
In some respects, marketing is like building a house. It takes a team to build a house. The best carpenter is probably not the world’s best plumber or electrician. In marketing, a world-class web developer may not have the most expertise in design or marketing strategy.
Certain tasks need to be done, in a specific sequence, for it to make any sense in the end. You can start to frame a house, until the foundation is laid. That is very similar to marketing. It makes no sense to create great content, unless your website and landing pages are optimized.
The Foundation - If you are struggling to figure out what should be done next, we recommend that you start by ensuring the foundation of your marketing program is built on a solid platform. Start with understanding who is your ideal customer. You do this through the interviews and analysis that are done to create buyer personas. This is the most foundational aspect of any marketing program. If your buyer personas have not been fully developed, don’t waste your time doing anything else until they are. For information on how to create buyer personas that will provide a solid foundation, we have two resources for you: “How to Create Buyer Personas” and “Buyer Personas – The Foundation of Strategic Marketing.”
The Architect – You would not consider building a home without architectural plans. You may end up with a structure that is unlivable. The same is true with marketing. You need a strategist who will help design your online home. That strategist will develop the blueprints for your website that will be optimized to grab the attention of those who visit and will convert prospects to customers.
The Home - After your foundation is on solid footing, you can now start framing up your marketing program. You need a place to house all of your information, a welcoming space where you can invite your new guests to visit and explore. You need a website. But not just any website will do. You need a place for them to visit that is comforting and easy to find different rooms. If you build a house, and want everyone to meet in the kitchen, make sure the kitchen is easy to find. Remember, everything you place in your new online home has to be something that your guest personas need and want to see. Just like with a house, the process of building a website has best practices you need to follow, if you want an online home that is friendly and easy to navigate. We have created an entire series on how to design and develop a performance-driven website. We have done a deep dive on arguably the most important page of your new home, your home page. To understand how each module fits together, and is built off the previous section, we have the following resources:
Building Code – A building code contains building design specs and construction requirements to ensure it will continue to be safe and fulfill its intended purpose. For marketing, we have on-page search engine optimization (SEO) requirements, basic foundational rules we must adhere to to ensure the online home fulfills its intended purpose. Just like building codes, there is no need to guess what needs to be done; the requirements are well documented.
In marketing, we have numerous resources that will tell you exactly the steps that you need to take to have your website optimized for on-page SEO. Unlike building specifications, a marketer should look to several of these resources to ensure full optimization and eliminate the bias.
Pro Tip – Prevail Marketing utilizes the following on every website we build, optimize, or where we provide marketing services for a client. While you can find many a blog that will list what items to consider, we find that the best way to improve your on-page SEO is to look to these testing sites:
Outbuildings - When you build your home, you often have outbuildings, such as a porch, cabana, or a pool house that are very inviting and can be used as a gathering place for people or events. These events are self-contained, and often, the guests never enter the home itself. In marketing, we have stand-alone landing pages that are designed as a special gathering place for people with a specific purpose in mind, such as capturing leads, promoting a product or service, or driving conversions. The guests to your online landing page do not even have a way to easily navigate to your main website (online home). The purpose of the visit is conducted entirely on the landing page.
To be effective, your landing page must be built precisely for the purpose it was intended. After all, you can’t have a pool party in a barn. To learn the way to construct a landing page, so it will fulfill its intended purpose, check out our blog entitled, “ Landing Pages, How to Optimize for Conversions.”
Housewarming – So your home is built, and now, you want to show it off to all your friends, family, and neighbors. If you want everyone to attend, you need to send out invitations. If you want them to feel their visit was worthwhile, and that they were welcome, you will feed them after they arrive. If you REALLY want this event to be memorable, and to have them anxious to return, the next time you send an invitation, you will engage a party planner to make sure that everything is done correctly.
Marketing is no different. If you want to get people to your website, you need to have a strategic marketing program. Since most founders simply do not understand marketing best practices, they would be wise to hire a marketing strategist to help them set up their program of invitations. That marketing strategist will create a wide-ranging program to ensure that all the right invitations are sent out to each of your targeted buyer personas. They will use a wide variety of techniques and strategies designed to resonate with the group. There are a few ideas in this article you can employ: “Introducing the New and Improved Inbound Marketing.”
Remember that even your online guests need to feel the time spent on your online home was well worth their time. Instead of giving them food and a drink, provide them with high-value content that will feed their soul. If you want, you can let them leave with party favors such as an e-book, infographic, or a guide.
There are some tips to ensure those party favors contain compelling content and information in this article: “Discover how to Create Great Content.”
For your very close friends (clients), you want to make sure they feel especially valued, so they return often and even invite others, to check out your home and hospitality. We think this is no different than client retention and influencer marketing. Here are some resources for you to ponder those connections:
We might have stretched the analogies to make the point, but we don't ever lose a challenge. Just as we never fail to achieve marketing/sales success for our clients. We hope you were entertained and maybe took the time to click on the 30 links we provided to relevant educational content.
If you are ever in our neighborhood, stop by and visit. We will serve you great content or provide food and drink, whichever is appropriate. Maybe, we will even send you on your way with a great party gift.