One of the biggest mistakes pre-ICO startups make is creating their website for one audience in mind. Here’s how to make sure you’re not leaving the others out in the cold.
Congrats! You’ve got a killer blockchain business idea.
Your white paper — all 29,877 words of it — is ready to go.
You’ve even come up with a cool name, complete with lots of consonants and a “Y” or two.
You’re ready for the cash — or the coins — to flow.
But wait... is your website ready?
Based on what I’ve seen from the majority of websites out there, probably not.
The biggest question you need to ask yourself before you hit the “publish” button is:
WHO IS COMING TO OUR SITE?
Since you’re pre-ICO, you might think the answer is clear: Duh, investors!
And yes, we do hope that oodles of lenders head your way with wallets outstretched. But those aren’t the only interested parties who will be landing on your new site at cryptoblockchainwesome.io.
Here’s are some other groups who may want to see what you’re up to:
- Potential employees
- Potential partners and advisors
- And, eventually, users or customers
Each of those groups has a distinct set of interests and questions. And if you create your site solely to blow smoke and show off your technical chops, you’re going to alienate a whole bunch of others.
Your goal when creating the design and content for your site is to:
1. Prioritize the various constituents. Understandably, before your funding, you’re concerned about investors or prospective employees won’t matter. But who’s second on the list? Third?
2. Figure out what each group wants to see. What a member of the press is looking for on your site (”What do they actually DO?” “What is Ethereum, anyway?”) is very different than what a job hunter is looking for (”Are they hiring?”). The best way to figure out what they need is to take off your developer hat and say, “Okay, if I were a writer from TechCrunch or CNBC, what would I want to know about these dudes?”, or “If I were a baller blockchain developer, what would I need to see to be interested in this company?”)
Sometimes those elements will overlap, but often they’re totally different. That’s okay; that’s why you have your priority list.
3. Sketch it out. Your challenge is to find a way to include content for each group without overwhelming visitors.
What you DON’T want to do is dump all that info on the home page and call it good. (As a member of the press, there’s nothing I dislike more than having to wade through screen after screen to find one tidbit of info. It’s a time-suck and annoying. Don’t annoy the press. It will come back to bite you.)
Instead, use menus to send me in the right direction. I’d much rather click a few times than
See how annoying that is?!
I’ll be honest - very few startups are doing this well. It’s a way to stand out fast and make people your friend! Lympo does this well, as does FreelancerCoin. It was really easy to find anything I was looking for on their sites.
One of the biggest traps brilliant technologists fall into is thinking the amazing attributes of their creations will sell themselves.
The business graveyard is filled with companies that had incredible innovations but weren’t able to get traction. Typically, this is a marketing failure; the companies weren’t able to make a compelling case for their product or service — at least, not in language the end-user could grasp.
Don’t let that be you. It’s actually not that complicated. After all, you’re on a quest to change the world. How hard is it to put that in terms a marketing hack like me can understand?
Lain Ehmann is a Stanford-educated marketing strategist who writes effective copy and content for technology startups and entrepreneurs. She doesn’t own any Bitcoin... yet. Reach her at Fastlain.com.