In football, it is not necessarily the teams with the best or most expensive players, but the teams that work well together under all conditions that invariably win the trophies. The prime example of this at work was Liverpool FC winning the European Championship in 1995 when they were losing 3-0 at half time yet went on to win the match.
On the Internet, there are millions of Websites with quite a number of excellent marketing features. However, in all too many instances, they tend to work against each other and produce negative results. All the features have to integrate and coordinate exactly like a winning football team, if your Website is going to win the match and produce a positive result.
Think of yourself as a Premier Football League manager, and assess each part of your team (Website features) for quality, integration, coordination, performance, and results. After each match (market test), you must hold a clinic, judge the results, and make the necessary changes. If one feature fails to perform during the match, make a quick change and bring on a substitute. There is just one thing—you must supply your own chewing gum!
Your goalkeeper is the Headline on each page of your Website, because if that does not grab attention, interest, and curiosity you immediately concede a goal and probably lose the match. Your visitor is likely to leave the Website for another game; and there are plenty of them in town.
Your team defence relies upon the strength of your backs; these are your page Title, Description, and Keywords. Not only must they integrate with each other, but also they must coordinate completely with the goalkeeper (your Headline) or you have no defence at all and risk losing every match.
Let us assume your Website is marketing an eBook on breeding yellow canaries, then your defence might look something like this:
Title: How to breed yellow canaries – new eBook from…
Description: How to breed yellow canaries and the 10 deadly mistakes to avoid is fully…
Keywords: how to breed yellow canaries, yellow canaries, canaries…
Headline: How To Breed Yellow Canaries And The 10 Deadly Mistakes To Avoid…
Naturally, those features are not complete, but they give will you an idea of how to create an ironclad defence to prevent conceding an early goal and losing your Website visitors in the opening minutes of the match. A strong defence is an integral part of any successful football team, and is often a feature that attracts team supporters; give your Website a strong defence and it will not only be successful, but will attract visitors.
Mid-fielders are often the workhorses of a successful football team, as they move the ball (your Visitor) from the defenders to the forwards with such accuracy that they can score a goal (positive Result) a high percentage of the time.
Your mid-fielders include your Sub-Headings, Sales Copy, and supporting graphics and photos. They must be rich with usage of your Keywords, and they have to carry the message from your Title, Description, and Headline from start to finish of every page on your Website.
If one of your mid-fielders is weak, and does not coordinate with backs and forwards, they can quickly lose the ball (your Visitor). In training (test marketing), you have to try various mid-fielders in different positions and see where they are most effective. Very often, you will find a Sub-Heading and Sales Copy that you had at the top of the page proves more effective in the middle or perhaps at the bottom just before the call to action (shot at goal, or filling your form).
Your forwards are the players (Website features) that you rely upon to score goals (make Sales) and just as in a football team, where they are often the most costly players, they can be the most expensive investment for your Website.
If your investment in your forwards is meagre in cash and time you cannot expect many goals, however good the rest of your team are. This is where you require brilliance, backed up by hours of training (test marketing). The forwards are your strikers and include your Offer, Guarantees, and Testimonials.
The centre forward is your Offer, and if this is weak…then so is your team, and your results will be poor. There are whole books written on just this subject, and you must spend considerable time in preparing and testing your Offer. Your Offer is the product or service you supply, the incentives that accompany the offer, and the special price that is only available for a specific time.
The centre forward has the support of inside forwards (Guarantees) and wingers (Testimonials); both sets of players that must perform a strong link between the mid-fielders (Sub-Headings and Copy) and the centre forward (Offer) to provide a strong attack. Your strikers must work as one to pass the ball (your Visitor) slickly from mid-field and into the net to score a goal (a Sale).
The Penalty Kick
This feature occurs occasionally in a football game, and can be very important in scoring a goal that decides the result of the match. The manager likes the best striker to take the penalty and he will spend considerable time in training on this one feature. In the event of a penalty shoot-out, he will require at least five accurate strikers. On your Website, the penalty kick is your Form, and you must spend aremendous amount of time in designing and testing it. You must make it easy and simple to complete so that you increase your chances of getting a goal (completed Form) every time. An examination of your Website logs may show that for every 10 people who open your form, only 2 complete it, and that means the form is losing 8 potential customers!
Managing a football team is no piece of cake and is certainly not for amateurs, which is why successful managers can quickly become multi-millionaires. If you wish to become successful at managing a team (your Website), you have to give it the same dedication and effort or you will be simply wasting your time and lose every game.
You now know how to manage both a football team and your Website; so—Game On!
© Copyright 2007. Brian Hunt. All Rights Reserved.
The author of this article is Brian Hunt, who has been writing, publishing, and marketing books and articles on business and leisure related subjects for the past seven years. He is a highly successful person with a broad depth of sales and marketing experience in various fields gained over many years in business. In addition to his publishing business, Brian works as a consultant for selected clients wishing to expand their marketing presence online.