For Websites. Pretty is Not Enough

Newcomers to the Princeton chamber came out in droves to hear Jennifer Baszile speak about online marketing this morning at the Nassau Club on “Five Fatal Online Marketing Myths that can Kill Profits and Sales in Any Business.”

Karen Nathan of Olivine LLC was new to me, as was Kathy Kyriakous of M & K Enterprises. Some in the 50-person audience, like Wilma Solomon and and Barbara Flythe of Not in Our Town and Mary Clare Garber of Princeton Legal Search Group, were fans of Baszile’s book “The Black Girl Next Door.” Others, like Helene Mazur of Princeton Performance Dynamics and Naomi Vilko of Vilko Corporate Consulting, knew they needed the information. And then there were the pros, experts in the field of internet marketing, like Dan Beldowicz of Single Throw, who were there to check out the competition.

Essentially Baszile said you do need to do online marketing and you probably can’t do it yourself. Career marketers are working night and day to outwit Google, and the scene is shifting like sand all the time. It’s almost impossible to do it right and still run your business. She reiterated what these insiders know, that mobile will be big, huge, and video is going to be more and more important to the success of a web strategy. “People today like to watch, not read.” And if you get a sales pitch from someone who doesn’t know about “direct response marketing,” find another consultant.

What resonated with me was her insistence that “pretty is not enough.” All the beautiful colors and fabulous art work are useless if a website doesn’t have good “bones.” At U.S. 1 Newspaper, where I was the webmaster for 10 years starting in 1996, I was always a little sensitive about the look of our website, It was fabulously useful but it wasn’t that gorgeous. It’s still fabulously useful, though it has been redesigned to be pretty, and I, now retired, am thankful not to be responsible for whether it meets Baszile’s standards: to increase profits, get new clients, and nurture existing customers.

Baszile generously offered every person in the room the opportunity to get two free 30-minute phone consultations on strategy for their websites. Many took her up on this surprising offer. Someone asked where to get training for an employee to work on the website in house, and she suggested Chicago-based Perry Marshall but closer to home there are lots of firms that would be glad to help, visible in the U.S. 1 Directory.

Photos: Left, Trudy Madden, the new director of U.S. operations at Scope Medical, with Bazile. Right, Barbara Flythe with Bazile, center, and Helene Mazur on right.

1 thought on “For Websites. Pretty is Not Enough

  1. I agree, she was right. In this day and age, people like instantaneous entertainment, and that usually comes from video and the internet, rather than buckling down to read articles. This is where the efficiency and customer awareness of your online marketing campaign has to work really well.Also, a website does have to look good, because boring ones turn people away, oddly enough. It can't be full of flash animation and bright colors, et cetera, because it will throw off your customer as well. Your website should always be professional and maneuverable. If it isn't, customers can lose patience easily if information isn't properly accessible.

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