Digital Strategy | Hey Marketers: Websites ARE NOT Media Guides

Hey Marketers: Websites ARE NOT Media Guides (Digital Is Different)

By: Paul Hickey, Founder and Lead Strategist

Yo, so I get it. I feel you. I mean, I may seem like I don’t have as much experience as you, but I’ve been in the game for 18 years. I started with fax machines. Making copies. Making print pieces and passing them out by hand to the media.

I mean, I know I’m a super digital geek now, but I have perspective on this, trust me.

Shit’s changed. A LOT. And I know we all recognize that, but here’s the deal – we’re still acting A LOT like we’re using print pieces.

Let me explain.

From 2001-2007 when I was working in Public Relations and Community Relations for the Detroit Pistons, we put MOST of our energy, time and dollars into Print Media. From a company macro perspective all the way down to the micro fact where we used to stay up 48 hours straight working on a Post-Season Media Guide (print piece) after the last regular season game ended.

Folks, this was something we PRINTED, then handed out to the media.

We stayed up 48 hours straight to get it done.

LOL.

Like, seriously. For our regular season media guide, we worked on it ALL SUMMER LONG.

ALL.

SUMMER.

LONG.

That means we proofread that FOCKER like 300 times. At least.

And honestly, in freaking 2001 (18 years ago), that made sense. Tiene Sentido.

It made sense for one main reason. People held that printed piece in their hands all year. It was their bible. The coaches, media, the staff, the public. That’s how they got their information.

If there were mistakes in that thing, they were on us. The design, the layout, the information, the spelling, the grammar, all had to be perfect.

Period.

Why am I pointing this out? Why is it important to understand?

Because prior to around 2007, this was the mindset of marketers for centuries. CENTURIES.

Media guides, advertisements, promotions, were all live in print form. Once they were published, there was no going back and correcting errors without large cost implications.

Our brains were all conditioned to have to get things right and perfect before publishing.

Marketers over age 40 get it, right?

Whew, okay, now stay with me, because this is the important part.

Now, not only does “having to get it perfect before publishing” it NOT HAVE TO BE our mindset, but it SHOULDN’T BE our mindset.

It used to be MORE efficient to get things perfect. Now, it’s far LESS efficient to even try.

Why? Because websites, digital ads and campaigns can all be changed in a moment’s notice after going live.

Let’s face it, the media guides I was talking about were outdated the next day, when a player would get injured in practice, or after the next game, when they’d miss more free throws than their average.

We’d have to type out and print more shit before the next game, every game. Then people would grab that shit (called game notes) along with the media guide.

Now, we just update our website. We just update our digital ad. It’s easy.

Whether it’s due to a mistake, like I made on this LinkedIn post the other day, that I simply swapped on the image for on this blog post, other, whether it’s due to a project budget that is being annihilated by analysis paralysis for fear of publishing an imperfect product.

Marketers and business owners, it’s time to stop trying to be perfect. It’s time to go live with our materials. They’re digital, and they give us data. We can look at the data, see what’s working and what’s not, and we can make changes.

Hell, we can even serve up various forms of content based on who the users are!

We’re not in 2001. We’re in 2018 and not to be cliche, but let’s start operating like it, please.

Stop wasting your time and everyone else’s time trying to make things perfect. “Perfect” is subjective and will never happen. It will all be outdated tomorrow anyway.

That’s why you’re building a website, not a media guide.

Go live. Save time. Save money. Make changes as necessary later. It’s not a media guide. It’s a website. They’re different.

Hit me up with any questions any time at paul@datadriven.design.

Thanks for reading, watching and listening, and have a great day!

KEEP MARKETING!

Paul Hickey, Founder / CEO / Lead Strategist at Data Driven Design, LLC has created and grown businesses via digital strategy and internet marketing for more than 10 years. His sweet spot is using analytics to design and build websites and grow the audience and revenue of businesses via SEO/Blogging, Google Adwords, Bing Ads, Facebook and Instagram Ads, Social Media Content Marketing and Email Marketing. The part that he’s most passionate about is quantifying next marketing actions based on real data.

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