I clicked over to continue reading.
The site popped up in brilliant colors. The template looked “2014 chic”. Everything loaded quickly, and the images were relevant and pulled me even more into the story.
I read about her trials and tribulations. I loved her wicked sense of humor. I loved her wild approach to life. I laughed. I cried. I wanted more. So I clicked and clicked some more. I kept reading well into the night. I even found a few case studies that she had scattered throughout her site; people that talked about her products and how much they meant to them – testimonials if you will as to the type of person she was and the type of business she ran.
I clicked to her Facebook account. Everything matched and I saw the same image, the same sense of humor I had found and fell in love with on her site. I found the same on her Twitter page.
I went back to her site, found the order form for her product, filled in the info and made my first purchase with her company.
That, my friends, is how to make a huge first impression with your audience.
It wasn’t an after thought. It didn’t “just happen”. It was well thought out and planned.
It’s the writing. It’s the look and feel. It’s the colors. It’s the personality. And it’s the images.
All of it matters when it comes to reaching out and grabbing your potential readers and clients by the heartstrings and pulling them in.
Now lets talk about your approach?
You had a Big Idea that you wanted to turn into a business. So you started by putting up a Facebook page. It’s free; why do anything else?
When it comes to free, you get what you pay for. If you only have a free account on Facebook, you may not have a page to connect to in the future. Sure, it works well now. But what if Facebook changes their focus tomorrow? They have no allegiance to you – they are in it for their shareholders and nobody else. Which means Facebook can and will change on a dime, every chance it gets if it makes a difference to their bottom line.
You wanted to put up a picture, but didn’t have anything current. Except for that group image you took at your friends’ party. The one where 15 of you are huddled close together in a group hug. Your hair looked great and your smile was real.
But the problem with that image is it has a lousy background. It was darker than dark. And when you crop in to see your face, there are a series of hands and arms all jumbled up into the image with you. It almost gives the impression of being surrounded by aliens. And when its attached to your newsfeeds and posts, all you’re left with is a nagging question of “what is that” – yes your followers see it too.
Then it comes down to your content on your site. You don’t really know what to write, so you just blast a few things out there every once in awhile. Nobody will notice, will they? And it doesn’t matter anyway – is there really a purpose to all of this social media hype?
If you put something out there, people will see it. Maybe not today or tomorrow. It might be next month or even next year. Yes, what you write has the potential to stay around forever. You know those “big headlines” of top stars that have nude photographs surface ten years after they posed for them – they did it because they weren’t really thinking, yet once they make it big it has the potential for damaging their brand? Yes, in a lot of ways, the same can happen to you (on a much different level of course). But if you write about politics, religion, or give an opinion you wouldn’t want the entire world to know about, it can resurface years later … after you become well known in your field.
Hopefully you’re starting to see the writing on the wall here.
When you first read about my example in the beginning – the one that led me to buy a product in less than an hour’s worth of time – you witnessed success with showing how branding is supposed to work.
When you aren’t focused and don’t have your end goal in sight, you start giving into the assumption that things don’t matter, and wind up hurting your brand. And hurting your chances for turning your Big Idea into a business that could ever sustain the lifestyle you’ve been dreaming of.
First impressions are everything. From the professionalism of your website, to the information you provide to a potential customer, to the image you use on your social media profiles, to the way you chat with people; it all matters.
You can only make a good first impression once. How are you presenting yours?