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A Benign Web

Harmless spider's web on bright leaves - marketing metaphor

Attracting attention and holding it fast…

How many times do we walk past a spider’s web?  Or sweep one out of the corner?  Very seldom do we pause to admire the craftsmanship; the incredible, complex construction that takes place.
How many times do we ignore this natural work of art?  One that can teach us a great deal about the fine art of marketing?
A spider’s web is built simply; one thread at a time; one connecting to another.
The finished net is brilliant, elegant, and unstoppable.  It has exponential tensile strength.
And once the spider is finished, she has very little left to do.  She sits in a corner, overseeing her domain, waiting for the signal tremors.

 

Engagement Marketing

Visualize your layers of communication as a benign web.  A vast, glittering, perfect labyrinth of carefully constructed thoughts and words.  Each layer; website, individual page content, blog, social media, contact us pages, customer service, reviews – even images – reinforces and deepens your impact.
Attracting attention is like lacing the strands of your web with dew drops, making it bright, positive, and enthralling.
Holding fast is the very essence of what a spider’s web does – only the goal of a marketer’s web is not to devour the visitor, but rather engage them, long-term.
The goal is to keep contact, to engage curiosity, to solicit questions and comments.  The goal is to refine, test, and refine again.
The goal is to create a positive, pleasant, memorable, and useful experience that will gently let your visitor go, and draw him back again as a customer.

 

Your Marketing Challenge

Unlike the spider, who has only one use for a visitor to her weave, you have many:
  • If you can’t convince a visitor to buy, then you need him to sign up for a newsletter…
  • If she won’t sign up, then you need her to leave a comment…
  • If he doesn’t want to stay at all – can you redirect him to your social media…?
A well-constructed engagement campaign should resemble a spider’s web in all these ways.

 

  1. The whole could not function without each carefully constructed thread…

A web is constructed of hundreds, if not thousands, of intricate threads.  Some threads are sticky, and some are dry.  Part of a spider’s web is for dining, and part is for living.  Together, a web provides an entire world for one little creature.
The delicate lattice that is an engagement marketing campaign is constructed of dozens of components, not all of them obvious.
When done right, every part of your company’s online presence becomes an extension of your engagement campaign.  You won’t just be managing your outreach, but rather your image and reputation.

 

  1. The whole is greater than the sum of its parts…

Providing value is a skill, almost an art-form in its own right.  And it is one that is much missed among web writers, designers, and marketers.  In order to truly engage your audience you must first give them something.
  • Websites must be open, friendly, well-organized, and to-the-point. Most of all it cannot draw attention to itself, or to you, but rather serve the needs of the visitor.
  • Your social media platforms need to be interesting and communicative, without being pushy, obnoxious or demanding.
  • E-Newsletters and info-email series have to provide value. These can be hugely valuable to you, but only if you give, give, give.
  • Product pages must be convincing and elegant, without being difficult.
  • Checkout Processes must be streamlined, simple, and convenient.
  • Reviews must be encouraged, and you have to be prepared to remind customers via email that they have the product and you would love to hear from them.

 

  1. It is durable, tough, and elastic…

Spider silk is one of the toughest substances on the planet.  It is five times stronger than steel of the same diameter.  Theoretically a Boeing 747 could be stopped by a single cable of pencil-width spider silk.
When completed an excellent marketing platform will be just as strong.  It will be tough enough to outlast time and tempests.  It will be durable, staying fresh and attractive despite rapidly changing trends.  And it will be elastic.
While other marketing platforms struggle to keep up with the fast-paced world of the internet, an engagement marketing platform will help you to stay relevant.  You will have enough flexibility to constantly update and expand, and enough of a structure that you won’t have to start from square one every time.

 

  1. It is complicated – but appears simple…

Most people won’t see all, or even most, of your engagement marketing, and many won’t know what it is they’re looking at.
When you furnish an exciting web page about exactly the topic that your visitor was searching for, you have engaged.  You are attracting attention and, by being relevant and helpful, you are holding it.
Keeping every level of marketing simple, but building a vast network, is the true key to building an engagement platform.

 

  1. And once finished, it requires only a minimum of upkeep to maintain…

A spider is always ready to fix her web.  She keeps an eye on it every day to make sure that nothing is broken.  She spins new silk threads where she has to.  She brushes out debris.
But really, it doesn’t take a lot of work.
Likewise, once fully constructed, you can set your marketing on auto-pilot.
  • Commit to putting up so many new posts a week, or a day – if you have the resources…
  • Make sure to check vital components so many times a month…
  • Watch the prevailing trends, and be one step ahead of the next one…

 

In Summary

You aren’t just trying to build a one-time campaign, (even if that’s your next project).  You aren’t just trying to reach one customer, or ten.  And you aren’t trying to forget one customer, or ten.  Marketing is about engagement.  Engagement is about communication.  And communication works best when it is clear, goal-oriented, and helpful.
If you don’t want to spend the rest of your life frantically trying to keep pace with rapidly changing trends, or making quick flashes in a glowing night sky – then you need to create a marketing platform that you can step away from.
Weave a benign web, attract your audience’s attention, and hold it fast.
As always – I would love to hear what you think.  Did you get any value from this article?  Is engagement marketing something you:
  • Are using?
  • Want to be using?
  • Have used?
To share your story and engage us with questions, drop us a line in the comments below.  Or send us a personal email via our contact us page.
Here’s to your attracting success!

Suzanna Fitzgerald

4 thoughts on “A Benign Web

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