Auditing the website content and social media offering of some companies and groups is a truly gruesome experience on occasion. You just wonder why they ever bothered to set up a website in the first place and was the end user ever a consideration. Let me share – from very recent experience – some of the things you just need to avoid when devising your digital/online strategy.
- Be honest – can you really picture in your mind the end user, the target audience you’re aiming at?
- Now ask yourself – would that target user REALLY engage with your content?
- Have you given ANY opportunity for the user to have their say – to engage with the content?
- So you put some social media buttons up on your website – and you think that’s a social media “strategy”?
- Have you created any content – filmed, info-graphics, text – that is easily shareable by users?
- If your content (on the homepage) never updates – why do you think people would ever come back?
- Have you ever considered that nobody will read that great block of committee approved text on your website?
- 8 minute videos – interesting – have you ever watched an 8 minute video on YouTube all the way through?
Much of the time, the problem with many organisations is they’re not entirely sure what messages if any they’re trying to relay and who are the most important stakeholders. Unless you have a clear sense of identity and purpose then the digital strategy is just not going to materialise. You can create a website, open a Twitter and Facebook and CALL IT a digital strategy….but it isn’t. Your interaction with audiences on these channels will be mundane, uninteresting and lead to inevitable disappointment.
Until you’ve mapped out a clear road map taking you from current perception to desired reputation and then started thinking about how digital could help make this happen – you’re in a dark corridor fumbling for the door handle. I’ve sat in on the warblings of plenty of so-called social media consultants insulting the intelligence of their clients with technical tips and the latest whizzy app without ever touching on the central question of any digital strategy – what do you actually want to say? This is the starting point and nothing else.