Antion and Associates’ Tom Antion on Making Sure Your Web Site ‘Gets Personal’
Tweaking and editing your Web site to appeal to the broadest possible base of potential customers is a daunting task. Even the most HTML-savvy marketing pro blanches at the thought of constantly changing lanes on the information superhighway, and the natural instincts of many is to get the Web site up and running as quickly as possible, then leave well enough alone. This way of thinking will leave you at the back of the pack, say industry insiders.
Tom Antion, owner of Antion and Associates in Virginia Beach, Va., is one of the nation’s leading experts on successful Internet marketing strategies. Author of the popular business how-to books “The Ultimate Guide to Electronic Marketing for Small Business” and “Wake ’Em Up Business Presentations,” Antion is a sought-after motivational and business speaker who has appeared in more radio and television shows than he can count. Proudly calling himself a “non-techie,” Antion takes a decidedly common-man approach to his books, articles and seminars, preferring language and examples that anyone can understand.
Having made his personal fortune through Internet marketing, these days Antion conducts seminars focusing on increasing your return on investment through strategic use of Internet marketing techniques.
Target Marketing: What is your advice to business owners regarding tailoring their Web sites to enhance their customers’ online experience?
TA: First, you want to start looking for software that’s going to personalize your correspondence with your audience. With just a little programming, you can create what I call a “dynamic sales letter” in an online format. Its purpose is to get the customer involved from the outset, while using that information to direct the customer down different paths within your site. For example, in that opening letter, you may ask them to click one box if they are a new customer, and another box if they are an existing client. Each choice takes them to a different location on the site customized to their answers. The more detailed the questions, the more you can customize the experience offered with each answer. I call that “separating them at birth.”