14-point checklist to increase leads from your Economic Development website

14-point checklist to increase leads from your Economic Development website

Ok, so you finally got the Board to include funding in the budget for a new website and it looks GREAT! Everyone who sees it says they love it. There's just one problem – you're getting very few or no leads and that stinks.

Of course the Board wants to know why you're not getting miraculous results since they ponied up the dough. They probably don't have any experience with online marketing and don't understand that a new website doesn't create instant results all on its own, but that doesn't matter. They're making noises and you've got to start getting some traction.

Plus, you work long hours. It would be nice if you didn't have to waste a lot of time communicating with prospects who aren't good matches for the community. If only those leads were already qualified so you could concentrate on the ones that you have a shot at...

Well, that's doable. Let's figure out how to get things going!

First of all, there's probably nothing “wrong” with your website.

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How to get better results from your website

How to get better results from your website

Changing your mindset when you're reviewing your site is the most important step you can take to begin improving it.

There are 3 things you should know about your website visitors:

  1. They're selfish.
  2. They're in a hurry.
  3. They don't want to have to think.

And if you're honest with yourself, you're exactly the same way when visiting websites.

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21 little known things you can do with marketing automation

21 little known things you can do with marketing automation

This article was originally written for LinkedIn Pulse.

Most people think that automated marketing just means email marketing, but nothing could be further from the truth. To illustrate the difference, here are a few ways you could be using automated marketing right now.

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Shop Local online store has new vendors in time for SmallBiz Saturday

Shop Local online store has new vendors in time for SmallBiz Saturday

Where else can you buy anything from pimento cheese to a hot tub to wine?

ShopLocalVGA.com, a regional e-commerce site developed for Virginia's Growth Alliance, has recently added some new vendors just in time for the holidays.

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Advanced Manufacturing isn't a targeted niche

Advanced Manufacturing isn't a targeted niche

According to manufacturing.gov, Advanced Manufacturing is the “use of innovative technologies to create existing products and the creation of new products.” That's a broad definition, but oh so safe to market within.

When an economic developer says they're a great location for Advanced Manufacturing, that's a bit like a restaurant saying they have great food.

You'll never see a restaurant promoting “food,” though. They'll communicate to you things like ethnicity (Mexican, Indian, Thai, Japanese, Italian, etc.), atmosphere (casual dining, fine dining, outdoor, fast food), origin (local, imported), and type of service (buffet, coffeehouse, tabletop cooking, cafeteria). If they just marketed "food," nobody would know what they really mean so customers would go on to the next restaurant.

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How investing in your website increases the value of your business

How investing in your website increases the value of your business

It's critical that you understand this: by transforming your website from the equivalent of an online brochure to a strategic part of your business, you can not only increase revenues and/or decrease costs, but also make your business more valuable and desirable to a potential buyer.

Your website could literally be the tiebreaker in selling your business and setting you up for the future.

Questions to ask yourself:

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Main Street Vineland launches new downtown brand at gala

Main Street Vineland launches new downtown brand at gala

Welcome to The Ave!

Vineland Downtown Improvement District in the city of Vineland, New Jersey, held their brand launch party on October 20 with over 300 excited people attending. In my 20 years of being in this business, Vineland is one of the most involved, positive communities we've ever worked with.

The number of volunteers involved is inspiring and they range in age from youth to retirees. They understand that the city is theirs, and they're not just waiting for change to happen. They're making things happen!

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