Your Advertising Dollars Aren’t Spaghetti

It’s one of those silly myths of cooking. Throw a pasta noodle at the wall; if it sticks, it’s done.

You don’t even have to be addicted to the Food Network or the Cooking Channel to know that just isn’t true. If a noodle sticks, it usually means nothing more than you just threw a wet noodle at the wall. Since pasta gets gummier the more it cooks, it might even mean your pasta is over-cooked.

What do gummy noodles have to do with a website?

Well, I’ve seen plenty of business owners who treat their online marketing budget like a bubbling pot of spaghetti. Every now and then they throw some of it at the wall and wait to see what sticks. Not much research, not much planning, no metrics; just pick the latest advertising gadget and spend some money on it.

Stop. That.

Randomly hurling dollars at the Internet won’t attract visitors to your website any more than lobbing linguini at the wallpaper will make you a master chef. Successfully marketing your website requires more than a little brainwork, a willingness to experiment and enough determination to wade through a bunch of reports with lots of numbers.

It’s a lot to keep track of. If your online budget is more than $100 a month, you’ll do better — and save yourself time and money — by partnering with online marketing professionals.

There’s no single “right” way of marketing that works for every website. Different methods work for different types of businesses, and different target audiences respond to different marketing formats. Doesn’t it make sense that the online marketing for your engineering company is going to work at least a little differently than a campaign for your brother-in-law’s tattoo parlor?

While there is a very important “art” aspect to online marketing, “science” plays a critical role in success. With a bit of clever coding, nearly everything that happens on and around your website can be quantified.

How many visitors are coming to your site? Where are they coming from? What marketing are they responding to? What are they doing when they get to your site?  Making use of all those numbers — and many others — to measure the impact of your marketing is the difference between smart business and the pasta launcher approach to wasting money.