There's a Thai restaurant nearby that does a fantastic job on a number of dishes. One of my favorites is their Red Curry. The dish is full of Thai vegetables and is really spicy. I don't think that it's one of their most popular dishes… their Pad Thai and Pineapple Fried Rice seem to sell like crazy.
I've never seen any of my friends order the Red Curry… and I know my family doesn't appreciate it as I do. I don't pay any mind, though. We all have different taste. Heck, most of my friends won't even come with me to the restaurant… Thai food is simply too different for them to even test out.
So… if I were going to open a restaurant, it probably wouldn't be the Red Curry restaurant. Sure, I might test the dish to see if someone likes it, but if I want the restaurant to be popular, I'll put items on the menu that attracts customers. My opinion doesn't really matter since I'm not the patron.
Great restaurants listen to their patrons. They keep the popular plates, test new dishes, and do away with the food that no one is eating.
What does this have to do with marketing? Well, it's a similar story being an agency. We have some clients that love their sites, love their content, love their graphics… yet they aren't getting any business off the site. We've also developed a few Infographics for companies that have never made the light of day, despite the fact that they're both beautiful and very informative. Why? Because the client didn't like them… or didn't like something about them.
When I hear a client say, “I don't like it!”, it's a little bit frustrating. Sure, there's an aspect of client satisfaction that we should be meeting… but when your inbound marketing isn't generating any leads, are you really going to continue to depend on your opinions? I don't think so, so I tell them like it is… “But it's not for you.”.
I'll say it to you, too. Your website is not for you. Your blog is not for you. Your infographic is not for you. Your landing page is not for you. Your advertisement is not for you. You're not buying a piece of art that you're going to hang in your office. Your website is a gateway for visitors to discover your products and services and that leads them in… from prospect to customer.
If you wish to improve your inbound marketing and fully leverage online media, you have to begin developing your strategies with the customer in mind. What attracts them? What will make them click through? What will generate more leads? Your opinion won't get you very far with online marketing. Testing and listening to your visitors will, though. Remember…
It's not for you.