The Startup Marketing Website

There are at about 607Screen Shot 2014-01-31 at 8.44.58 AM,000,000 easy, reliable, and cheap resources you can use to stand up your startup website.  This post is not about the physical mechanics of finding a website vendor, hosting your website, what plugins to use, or any thing like that.  One of the best playbooks on how to set up your marketing platform is “Platform – Get Noticed in a Noisy World” by Michael Hyatt.  Highly recommended read. He literally walks you through setting up a website, which tools to use, blog hosting, email marketing, and more.

Rather, this post should help inform what type of content to place on your startup website and what it should achieve.

Since you’ve completed at least 50 calls with potential customers already, you should have a great idea of what keywords and phrases they use, the pain you are attempting to solve, and what will compel them to give you their cash.  Keep this in mind.

Start here. What is your website actually trying to accomplish?

  • Lead generation for the sales team? Better load that puppy up with some hot CTAs [calls-to-action] and something so freakin’ valuable your visitor has no choice but to share their information with you in exchange for that content.
  • Raise money? Best to show that you have [paying, hopefully] customers and a kickass team.
  • Educate the market?  Better dumb down your language so anyone can easily understand the problem & solution.  Speaking of dumbing down the language…

What first impression do you want a website visitor to have?
I argue that anyone should be able to instantly tell what you do.  Ask your mother & father to look at the home page and describe back what it is your company actually does. Ask your friends that work cushy desk jobs that don’t know your industry. Can they explain your business?  Yes? You win.  Did they fail? You have failed.

What does the visitor want to know first?
Do they care about your blog or social media channels? Are they trying educate themselves on the industry?  Are they responding to a cold email or phone call and looking for the basics on your company?  Your answer will depend on your business. Ask yourself these questions and create your content and navigation accordingly.

What is the most desired action you want a visitor to take?
This gets back to the very first question.  ABC, mofos.  Always-be-closing.  What is the hidden agenda of your website? What should someone do after they’ve landed there? What next step is your website “closing” for.  Know exactly what this action [or actions] should be, then build your content and navigation accordingly.

At the bare minimum, getting something up and visible is the first task.  Schedule time weekly, monthly, quarterly to review your messaging and collateral to ensure it still matches what you are selling and saying.

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