Brittany DeBole

As a society, we fear what we don’t know. As businesses, we lose our hair, shut our doors and never open emails because of that fear.

A quarter of my day to day is dedicated to hearing senior level executives rationalize why their websites are so outdated and why they don’t believe in online marketing. Time and time again their number one rationale is: ‘We don’t drive traffic to our site.’ The real objection? Fear of investing in something that might not pay off.

The truth is, they should be afraid of not doing anything – of falling so far behind they become obsolete, because the future IS online.

They say: “In my industry, people aren’t searching for us online. We don’t drive traffic to our website.” Nine words, two sentences and one paramount misconception. Mr. CEO, think simpler.

Ask yourself, “Why do you have a website?”

Why do you have a website? For whatever reason, somewhere along the way, you decided to create a website, but the dream stopped there. Maybe you thought, ‘If I build it, they will come.’ So you did. You built it and they never came.

About 90 percent of people start their purchasing process with a search, whether you’re driving prospects to your website or not

How did you expect them to get there? A trade show, a referral, a cold call, an elevator ride and an exchange of business cards? About 90 percent of people start their purchasing process with a search. Whether you’re driving prospects to your website or not – they’re searching for what you specialize in and clicking on the results that Google provides.

When they get there, what will they find on your site? What will you have to say to them? What impression does your website leave?

Your audience will make a complete assessment of you and your company in a matter of seconds. The clock is ticking to impact unknown visitors – what will you do to shape their opinions? What will you do to make them want to stay? Knowing your competitor is one click of the mouse away, prepared, emerged and ready to capture that lead.

You don’t have to be the next Amazon to need content on your site

If I had a nickel for every time I heard, “We’re B2B, you can’t purchase anything from my site. It’s a brochure,” I would buy a small island in Thailand.

Thank you, I’ve been to your site, by mistake – I left very quickly when I realized you were not the next Amazon.

Don’t be fearful, there’s a whole world of ways to get the most from your website – far beyond a transaction. In fact, let’s omit sales from the equation altogether.

Why do you brush your teeth in the morning? The same reason you have a website. Your website is your calling card, your first impression.

Content marketing gives your brand a voice and uses your website as a microphone for that voice. So when people find you online, you give them a reason to stop, to listen – to hear your song. What message does your content deliver? What type of song are you singing?

Can you afford to miss opportunities? Fall behind?

Wayne Gretzky once said “I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.” In a world of unrelenting competition and onto-the-next attitude, you can’t afford to be forgettable. That’s what content marketing is – it’s the five seconds you have to shape the view of a person you may have never met.

I was recently talking to a commercial real estate company with a decision maker who held firm to the misconception that his business didn’t need content or a stronger web presence. So I asked him, ‘How do you do business?’

He explained that the company uses multiple platforms, some complex and some simple, like cold calling. I asked about the rate at which his sales team books a meeting, and what happens to contacts that don’t buy right away.

Then I heard his wheels turn and the gates open.

BraftonGup1 (2) left

Not all cold calls result in meetings booked, and not all meetings booked turn into deals. What happens when a prospect isn’t ready to buy from you now, but they might be eventually? They begin their own research and they land onto your website. Wouldn’t you use your website as a tool in the sales process, if you could?

It’s about the destination AND the journey

Different types of content impact different types of behavior. Be proactive: Strive for every click, for every lead, for every opportunity. Identify your target audience, determine your goals, attach a solution, commit and evolve your brand online.

Do what you can, where you can and don’t let fear stop you from a voice that’s dying to be heard, for every first impression.

Want to talk more about why your business needs to evolve? Let me know in the comments section below or by reaching out to me directly at