the internet ideas blog

Friday, February 25, 2011

The Social Element of Extreme Makeover

The last several weeks I've been hard at work supporting on of my clients, Bob Cook Homes, while they go through the process that most people see in a scant hour of the Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. One of the big parts of making this home come together quickly was the power of social media. In fact, one of the local newspapers noticed wrote a short article about the topic.

Everyone always wants to know how you measure the effects of social media. Here are the bare numbers of this particular campaign -

From the 17th to February 24 (during the build):
  • 82 Twitter posts which garnered 131 RT & 2235 clicks.
  • 119 FaceBook updates which produced 329 'likes' and 199 comments.
    Plus approx 500 new fans & 3238 visits to the extreme website.
  • 5 blog posts to date have had 2193 views and growing
  • 5 email blasts that had an average of 57% open rate and 49% click through rate.
Those are pretty darn good numbers - some would question, however, is that a good measurement?

The real measure is what happened as a result of the above. With all the social we were able to get workers to the right place when needed, get fabric transported from other states by volunteers to the build in Wichita, get extra siding on the site in under an hour, deliver enough beverages to the site in a single day that the crew never had a problem finding their favorite drink from that day forward. Just to name a few real life examples.

Could the same be accomplished in other business situations? Absolutely IF the same amount of time & effort are put into it. I've had similar successes on a smaller scale, a direct correlation to the amount of time involved.

So the big reveal is over, at least for those of us in Wichita KS. Our work is pretty much done. The rest of the country will get to see the hard work of the volunteers and Bob Cook's awesome team sometime in May.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The Total Solution

I was working on the Tip of the Day and found that I needed more room that FaceBook would allow so I decided to blog on and give you the whole enchilada. So here goes . . .

When someone is searching the web, they are actively looking for the solution to their "problem." Nothing is worse than buying a widget from one place, the do-dad from another and then having to call on a third source to help you learn how to use it!

When you are able to offer the total solution you have not only solved the problem, you'll get the sale.

Here are some examples of the total solution:
  • Give a beginning price but show a package price (with discount is even better) for all the elements necessary for them to be able to use your product or service out of the box.
  • Give the visitor options for shipping or installation of the product. Use that as part of the package pricing.
  • Give clear exchange and return policies - when people have this information up front it helps them trust you.
  • Offer training, on site or virtual, to help people learn to use the product or get the most from your services.
  • Have clear instructions on how to set-up, let people know the ease / difficulty to learn about the product.
  • Sell service plans as part of a package, definitely don't make them search for it on the website. When it's included as part of the package, they are more likely to purchase. It is more difficult to sell these services later on.
  • Do you have any guarantees? Put them up front and center - this is every bit as much of the solution as any tangible elements.
  • If you have many locations then use that as part of the benefit to the total package solution.
Think of the times you've been frustrated going from one source to another trying to find the perfect solution. I remember trying to find one application / program / cloud source that would both do time-keeping, invoicing & project management. I still haven't found that so I am using 1 cloud app for time-keeping & invoicing, 1 cloud app for project management, and 1 program on my computer to provide full service payroll processing. I'm thinking it would be pretty great to have it all in one.

I also know that my clients really appreciate the fact that they can rely on my service as a "one-stop" shop to solve all their needs: web development, hosting, domains, search optimization, social marketing, email marketing and lots of good ideas.

Take a look at how your site is offering your featured product or service and think of how you can change the way it is all presented to give the total solution. Need ideas? Contact me!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentine's Day!

Big Love for Our Clients
This Valentine's Day we thought it would be a good idea to let all of our clients know just how much we love working with them. It's a rare blessing to be able to get paid for what you enjoy doing. It's even more of a rarity to admire and respect the people you work with.

Every day we come in to work and have no idea what's going to come up. Whether one of our clients is getting involved in a national television show, or they're being featured on Groupon. We are constantly challenged, but find solace in the kind words from our clients and their dedication to their own businesses.

We believe that it's important to enjoy your work, to be proud of your achievements and to strive to be better every day. All of our clients are the epitome of our ideas, and we look to them for inspiration when we're feeling defeated.

We thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your continued business and support. If you weren't who you are, we wouldn't be who we are. You make us better by being so great yourself.

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Working on "Extreme Land" in an Extreme-ly White Land

Well here we are, a few weeks and many many miles into "Extreme Land" as Teajai so eloquently labeled the project, and things are finally starting to take shape. The Extreme Makeover version of Bob Cook's website has gradually gotten to a point where it's less burdensome to maintain, but still requires a lot of our attention. With nearly daily correspondence from the Extreme camp we're definitely being kept busy.

If you ever want to know what full service really means in the internet world - the Extreme Makeover project is definitely a prime example as we are handling everything from programming to design to seo & social media -daily.

We've gotten so busy in fact that sometimes we have to throw our hands up and say "HOLD ON!" and work on keeping up-to-date with our "regular" clients. That's what I'll be doing for the majority of this snow covered day. I think Teajai said she was still working on a banner for the Extreme Makeover Pep Rally that is going on tomorrow - it's free to the public, you should think about going, I'll be there.

It wouldn't be a blog post without mention of the weather here in Wichita, which is completely insane. I woke up this morning and didn't even look out the window. After I got out of the shower I figured I should probably check if school was in session. All it took was me looking out the window and being blinded by the light being refracted from the snow that I took it upon myself to decide school was canceled. I then called Teajai to see if she wanted me to come into the office, of course she said to stay in and work from home.

Hopefully we get an 80-degree warm front that melts all this snow by tomorrow morning. I much prefer working in close proximity to the boss for easier correspondence. Better yet, we could move the office to some warm beach side resort.

Let's see, one of our clients (The Ladies Golf Place) was featured on Groupon! That was exciting for me, I'm looking forward to seeing the Google analytics after the traffic settles down and seeing just how much of a spike they receive. I'm also going to spend some time today getting our clients up to date on their social media stuff. I'm sure everyone is just dying for more savings on dragon-shaped stamps (Superior Rubber Stamp) and huge "SALE" banners (Superior Signs).

Well, time to get back to work! I hope everyone is having a great week so far and I think Teajai and I are going to try to keep the blog more active for you guys.

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