5 Branding essentials to take care of this week
As the new year rolls in updating your brand materials and online presence is as important as setting your vision and goals. Week by week you should be gaining more visibility and opportunities and that means you’re getting more eyes on you.
What tends to happen for many people is that they roll into the new year and neglect a few really simple things along the way. The five essentials outlined below are subtle, but noticeable… the type of things that successful brands do automatically.
1) Update The Copyright Date In Your Website/Blog Footer. I listed this update first because it really is the top priority. If your website lists last year’s date for the copyright it immediately says that you’re outdated, don’t pay attention to detail, not active in your business or a combination of the three. It’s impressive to have the copyright update immediately after a new year begins. You can even indicate how long you’ve been in business by doing a date range, such as 2003-2012.
2) Update Your SEO Descriptions (Meta Tags and Keywords). OK, this is techie talk, let me explain. Meta tags and keywords are the descriptions used in the coding of the pages of your website to clearly define what your page is about. The code is usually hidden from view, but is available when someone searches online for your subject matter. The description is also hidden, until it shows up in a search query. You’ll want the descriptions on each page to be unique (this is one of the reasons I highly recommend that most business not do a website built completely on wordpress) so that you are able to give separate and relevant descriptions for each page/service offered.
3) Check For Broken Links. The more pages you add to your website, and the more comments, blog posts and comments you make online, the more likely it is that you’ll have a broken link somewhere. Also, it’s likely that a link that you’ve posted or recommended in the past may have changed or been deleted at some time during the course of last year.
A great way to make sure your reputation as a resource in your industry remains top notch is to do a comprehensive check for broken links. You’ll want to check the links going out from the pages of your site, as well as links coming in to your site from other places online. There are many sites that let you check a limited number of pages, and for a small fee you can check your full site. My recommendations are LinkTiger.com and PowerMapper.com
4) Update Your Website Testimonials, Clients and/or Portfolio Pages. If you haven’t been updating your information periodically throughout the year the beginning of the year is a great time to do a total update. My recommendation for testimonials and clients is to list the most recent/current ones first. Also, in my line of business at least, if the person is no longer in business, having a testimonial from them or listing them as a client will do you more harm than good.
It raises a big red flag because it says “I don’t have enough clients to simply list my current roster.” If you’re just starting in business or have the type of business where clients are serviced and then move on, simply state the fact by indicating “here’s what past clients have loved the most… etc.”
5) Send A “Please Update Your Contact Info” Email. Not a month goes by when I think “I really need a better system for maintaining my contacts” and to date, I haven’t figured out that perfect system. Have you? In the meantime, I make sure to take advantage of milestones, such as the New Year, to send out an email that requests updated information for my friends, family and community. Later this week I’ll be sending out a request for updates and I recommend that you do to. Our cell phones, emails, mailing addresses and even websites change over time and it’s a sinking feeling when you lose contact with someone that you love being connected to.
This is a small but powerful list. Use these 5 essential updates and you’ll always look polished, connected, clear and ready for business. May this new year bring your brand an abundance of visibility, opportunity and prosperity! And for those of you who need a bit of help with the techie stuff, call me this week and we’ll see if I can help at (888) 968-2726.
If you’re on top of your website and marketing as this list suggests please list your site below and share this post with your friends.