Your website should be a high-performing tool. If it isn’t, that usually signals one of two things: either it simply isn’t capable of performing, or it’s not being used to its full advantage. As with any high-performance instrument, it needs to be consistently re-tuned and re-calibrated to serve its intended purpose.

Whether you’re a true start-up, or a false-start in search of a correction, Infinity Reef has effective strategies to move you forward on a solid footing. In a previous post, we laid out a rationale for you not to launch your initial website at full speed. In it, we explained how your vision will naturally migrate in the early going (sometimes radically), and how you’re not going to rank in search engines in any meaningful way for months to come. Better that you scale back your initial website to a more practical level, and channel those extra, scarce funds into short-term productivity. False starts, on the other hand, feather a completely different nest of challenges.

See if you recognize your situation in the following—

Four Clues Change In Direction

Change in Direction

Intention, meet reality: Despite the grandeur of your vision, and the clarity that helped you sell it to your investors and early customers, the market is going to shape your business. You may have intended for the company to operate in a certain way, but it’s from the market where demand emerges.

There are things you can do to influence demand, but the line of least resistance will come from listening to your customers. They will ultimately tell you what they’re looking for. Your early traction will come from providing it.

Many companies stall because they fail to heed the voice of the market. If you opened a chamber music club to provide a venue for your favourite genre, but everyone in your area wants to listen to country and western, guess what? You’re either going to adapt or struggle to survive.

Adaptation doesn’t have to mean a 180º reversal. If you want to change the flow of traffic, you’d be well advised to merge first, rather than colliding head-on. Get in the flow, then influence change. But doing so means you’ll be different than you’d originally intended. Now, we don’t profess to know how you will reconcile Franz Schubert with Chris Stapleton – we’ll leave that to you. All we’re saying is, don’t pour all of your marketing budget eggs into a grandiose online basket, because you will only have to renovate.

Let the market and your nimble response to it define your operational trajectory. And when you find you’ve overshot your target, contact us at Infinity Reef. We’ll provide you with an unbiased, rational and independent way forward.

Four Clues Evolution

Evolution

Rust never sleeps: For a million different reasons that are ultimately not valid, business owners continue to underestimate the importance of consistently updating and evolving their web presences. This is particularly true of start-ups.

Everything that a start-up does will likely turn out to be bigger, take longer, and cost more than expected. Instinct being what it is, we curb what seem to be excesses in the interest of survival during these times. With our heads down, bracing against external forces, we don’t always make the right strategic choices. We lose track and, before you know it, we’re not confident in our messaging online and elsewhere.

We tell ourselves we’ll catch up when the dust settles. But, meanwhile, the game is changing around us, and we’re losing our relevance by increments that go unnoticed. No matter how accurate, insightful, and of the moment your content is, the networked world is not going to stop changing just because you caught up.

Quite the contrary: your timeliness means you have become the latest stepping stone for your competition. The most relevant among them will now measure themselves and their next steps against the precedent you have set.

It’s not unusual for a new entrant to be a trendsetter. Uber may have disrupted an industry, but it has more in common with Amazon than it does with taxi companies. Both found a better way to deliver other people’s content without maintaining inventory or a responsibility for product quality. The market took care of that for them. Now, anyone becoming the “Uber” of whatever industry is derivative, not disruptive. Uber and Amazon did not stand still. Others around them did, and that’s why you don’t know their names.

  • Did your company launch, or expand online in the last two years?
  • How many times have you refreshed your design during that time?
  • Are you ranking well in organic search?
  • Are your social media channels unified in their message? And are they driving business growth?
  • What about your online ad spend; is it returning a minimum of 5:1? If not, why not?

As they say in the Tour de France, “If you’re not advancing, you’re going backwards.”

At Infinity Reef, we specialize in re-railing de-railed start-ups. Sometimes you have to pause and take a step back before you can jump ahead. Reach out, let us take a look at your situation. We can lay out a dynamic plan we’re confident you will seize upon.

Four Clues Accumulation

Accumulation

Time to clean house: Have you ever papered over a crack? How about an extension on your house? Have you ever made additions or changes to address a symptom, but disregarded the underlying problem? We certainly have, and we have a shed full of useless stuff because we’re convinced it might become useful some day.

Websites tend to be like that. In fact, they’re digital reflections of the business’ wider life. Just like it’s said that a cluttered desk betrays a cluttered mind, an ill-disciplined online presence indicates a lack of attention to marketing detail.

You’ll let it deteriorate until even you’ll admit something must be done about it. It’s time for a spring cleaning – digital style.

But where do you start? Call in an independent third party. At Infinity Reef, we don’t care why it’s the way it is; we just want it to work to its optimal best. That means taking out the trash and maximizing the functional.

As mentioned already, rust never sleeps, and you must keep the machine lubricated. Update the moving parts. Ensure everything is aligned and pulling in the same direction. Contact us for a chat. You’ll find there’s value just in talking. We’ll lay out a plan to address the issues, and processes to minimize the inefficient accumulation going forward. We’re confident you’ll agree.

Four Clues Relaxation

Relaxation

Objective analysis: Your objectives and your strategy are not the same thing. Objectives spring out of your strategy. They’re a subset of the overarching intention. People often make the mistake of altering their objectives without due consideration of the master plan. Subtle changes have the effect of luring you into believing there is no fundamental hazard.

Imagine this—

You’re driving down the highway and you notice your vehicle is pulling to the left. In the short term, all that means is that you will apply a compensating pressure on the steering wheel to keep you on track. No big deal, as long as you get the vehicle into the shop for a realignment.

If you leave it, you’ll get uneven wear on your tires. Leave it a long time, and could create a problem in your struts due to the adverse stress. One thing you wouldn’t do while driving down the highway is climb out of the vehicle and attempt a realignment while in motion.

We use this absurd example for good reason. Objective hopping, or swapping out objectives without due consideration to the underlying strategy could be that crazy. Start with the strategy and work your way out. Don’t relax into taking what seems to be the easy way. At a minimum, it will create inefficiencies or messaging breakdowns elsewhere in the system – not the kind of experience your users will appreciate.

Moral of the story: centralize control over all your marketing – particularly your online strategy. If you don’t have the capacity in-house, let us show you the cost effectiveness of Infinity Reef’s solutions.

Despite all the optimistic enthusiasm that surrounds a start-up, it’s a time of some peril. We all know the statistics. What may not be so obvious is that success goes to those best able to accommodate the variables – and let’s face it, until your venture hits the ground, there is no track record. Everything is a variable.

At Infinity Reef, we know this. That’s why we’re so insistent on a managed approach to your online presence. In a time of uncertainty, don’t leave what you can control to chance.