There is a new problem plaguing a great number of online entrepreneurs. Some don’t think it matters, others are totally unaware, and some even think it helps. Well, the truth is it doesn’t and to you it should be painfully obvious. In this particular way the online version of your business is effected the same way as a real brick and mortar version of your business would be.
We have raced to put together so much content and create multiple online destinations over the years that we have almost forgotten where they are and what they contain. We have signed up for so many different social media apps, so many we might not even remember the passwords or the content we left on them.
We have littered the INTERNET and possible DILUTED our brands.
Your online presence could be tarnished because you don’t realize you’ve been hoarding online knick-knacks and didn’t even realize it. There are so many ways this can actually affect everything you’re doing today and tomorrow. So I’m going to explain the 3 ways this affects you and give you some solid suggestions on what to do about it.
- Unused Social Media Accounts – Sure every time a new social media app comes out we often want to check it out so we create a profile and play little, look around and maybe for some time embrace what it can do and make it a part of your social media strategy. But then you stop posting, forget about it or the app becomes outdated. It might not be gone. It may still have a sturdy group of people that love it and are sticking with it. And those people can see what you have left behind, and it might not be the latest and greatest you have to offer. You might have pivoted your business and your message could have change a lot.I’m not saying you have to keep updating every single social media outlet you have, but you should at least make sure the message is correct or no message at all. If your not going to use it, lose it. Think about it, someone sees your business name promoting something that you have left in the past and that’s an impression that was lost because you left it out there. Most of the free world has other ways to find you online. Don’t leave old shit out there to confuse and discourage them.
- Old Websites – I’m surprised at the number of clients I’ve worked with that had 3 or more websites for the 1 business they operate. There are lots of reasons why this happens. Some want a fresh new website with a new URL, purchased a new or more relevant URL, or didn’t understand you could rebuild over the existing one. Whatever the case, I’ve seen abandoned websites work against their current efforts. Remember, those older websites have been in more search results than the new so they actually might pop up first when people look for you. And what about the confusion it caused when multiple pages showed up on the search results? Now that could frustrate anyone, especially if it leads them to old information. And the expense of these old sites? They could be disrupting your message and your still paying for them to do it. Crazy right?
- Blogs – I’m sure there are people that think, NO NOT MY BLOGS. Nobody wants to take blogs down. But if your message or the times have changed, do you really want people to look back and take note of your change of direction. It won’t breed confidence into your business and it will project a chance that what you’re saying today will change tomorrow and the information or service you are selling will become irrelevant. If you are one of those people that take pride in the number blogs you have written, don’t worry, your message is more important. You still wrote 7000 blogs, nobody would challenge that. But protect your message and you protect your brand.
For those of you that would like to do something about it, here are my suggestions:
- Find Everything – Find all your URLs and social media profiles, and all passwords. At least put that information together in a safe place. But what you’re trying to do is at least create a map of where all your information and branding is.
- Review your content – If your content is now outdated or inaccurate you have two choices. Update it or get rid. Sometimes updating can be a very productive thing. You can post updated blogs, and people will notice that you have stayed current and your information is new and accurate. Staying on top of your content will in fact help with how people measure your integrity.
- Close out old accounts – If you see an old profile on a social media app that hasn’t been used or not up to date. Make a decision to make it current and relevant or clear its contents and close it down. Don’t let these forgotten social media profiles confuse your audience.
- Consolidate and redirect – If you have multiple sites but you’re mainly operating out of one, then move content from the old sites onto the new. Clear out what’s left of the old sites and redirect all the URLs you have for your business to the one main URL. This should help get everyone on the same page, literally. Also free up some resources on your website service provider account.
You may be thinking you need to take a closer look at what you have online now, and that’s a good thing. I have seen people go through this process and have actually had an improvement with people finding them and improvements with business because all their viewable content is accurate and up to date.
Taking on this task is considered maintenance, but it can be more productive than putting new content out there amongst all your other content floating about. Just think about it, you don’t want your content to seem like a yard sale. It should be a shining example of what you and your business is all about and it should be the best, most accurate and update information that people can easily find.
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