What Can You Learn from the Top 3 Websites on The Planet?

Do you know what the top 3 most popular websites are right now?

1. Google
2. Facebook
3.  YouTube

Do you know what they have in common?

They're all about content & connection.

Wikipedia, Yahoo & Twitter are also up there.  In fact, the only e-commerce website to crack the top 10 is Amazon.

Gone are the days of the faceless corporation.  Gone are the days of big businesses who don't connect with or care about their customers.  And if the "big guys" have to make an effort to find ways to connect, as a small business you've got no excuses.

What does that tell you YOUR website should do?  Yep, offer stellar content that provides values & insights to your audience (I know easier said than done).  And finds ways to connect with them on every stinking page!

How do you create an emotional connection with visitors on your website?  How do you demonstrate your humanity & compassion?

It's about being real.  It's about getting a personality!

Not your personality (I'm sure it's lovely) but a personality for your business.  Which may or may not be the same as YOUR personality.  It all depends on the clients (or customers, whatever you call your peeps) you're trying to attract.  The image you want for your business.  And how best to mash those things together in a way that's pleasing and makes sense.  You're aiming for Jackson Pollock not 3-year-old finger painting.  You want these ideas to make sweet love not have a one night stand they'll regret.  Pick your metaphor.

We've all heard 786 493 times that content is king.  Thank you very much, I have now been bludgeoned over the head with this tidbit of marketing wisdom.  I get it.  I NEED some kind of content.  Before you object by saying, "But Jess, I've read dozens of articles recently all doom and gloom about how content is dead".  The numbers don't lie.  We're still consuming content at staggering daily rates.  Check out those top 3 websites again and then tell me content is dead.

Find The Medium You're Comfortable With

But content these days can take dozens of forms.  So the question then becomes not whether or not to create content.  Please let's move on.  But how do you want to present that content?  And how does your audience want to consume it?  These are much better questions to consider.

Listen, there will always be the latest trend you can jump on board with.  There's video, twitter chat, periscope, podcast, short-form blogs, long-form blogs, etc. etc.  Plus all the latest, greatest, newest tech they haven't even dreamed up yet.  Next it'll be virtual reality posts or some such nonsense.  There's some value to being one of the FIRST.  But if you can't be first, and very few can, how do you choose?

What's important is to choose the medium where you're comfortable.  Where you can show off your unique brand of weirdness (I mean that in the best way, we're all delightfully weird in one way or another) in a way that is authentic and draws people in.  Create content that shows off your business's personality.

My words are wild and bold.  They're fun, opinionated and free.  They are absolutely ME!  But I'm also an extreme introvert who's terrified of public speaking or getting on video.  And while I see the VALUE of doing webinars (believe me I do) and offering live classes (I even used to be a teacher).  I also recognize that I may not translate as well on camera.  And I tend to suck at expressing my ideas verbally when I'm on the spot (although somehow I used to do this all the time) ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ unless I've had a chance to think about it.  A problem for delivering a live class right?

I'm not saying I'll never do a webinar or live class (because whenever you do the universe has a way of making you eat your words) but for me, my strength has always been the written word.  Hence the day job you guys.  Which is why, when everybody and their hairdresser jumped on periscope I watched from a distance.  Infinitely grateful NOT to be live.

Choose the medium where you feel comfortable.  Deliver your content in a style that can show off your personality.  And in a way that your customers want to consume.  Also an important consideration but not enough to make me jump on periscope you guys.

Want to know the cheapest, easiest, fastest way to connect with clients?  To show your personality and make an emotional connection?  Yep, you guessed it, your words.

Do the words on your website show off your personality?  Or are you hiding behind a professional veneer that you think is necessary for people to take you seriously?

It's time to ditch the jargon.

Do your words demonstrate compassion and understanding for your clients?  Or are you too busy thinking about your thing (I know it's awesome and this should be obvious to everyone but it isn't okay)? 

Is it time to crawl inside the mind of your client but have no idea where to start?  -> read this

Finally, if you've read this but you're wondering how on earth you create content that stands out and sounds fresh given the hundreds of millions of options for content that flood the internet every day here's my best advice.

What's your favourite way to communicate with your audience?  What's your favourite way to consume the content you love & why?  (if you all say periscope I'm going to cry)

If you agree (or even if you disagree) take a second and share this article and start a conversation.