Let’s chat about having a website for creative brands. Imagine one day, you woke up and all social media platforms were gone. Where would your business be?
This happened in a small way last year, in 2019. Facebook and Instagram were down for a day, and people were. freaking. out.
When this happened, it really made me think – what would I do if social media platforms were gone? Would my business still function, or would I be in trouble?
It’s true that social media platforms are valuable marketing tools, and every business should have a presence there. But when it comes down to it, the most important and reliable foundation for marketing your business is having a website. The main reason for this is that you own it!
Instagram and Facebook are owned by CEO’s and are major companies. Their constantly changing their algorithms and how they work. The fact is, you don’t own your social media profile or presence, and that hypothetically could disappear with you having no say about it.
Your website, on the other hand, is owned by you. It’s not free – you usually pay for hosting, the website template, domain name, and storage. Essentially, you own that small plot on the Internet. This means that:
- You control the design
- You control the functionality
- You control what people see, and the way and order they see content
Thinking offhand, I think I can safely say that every marketing effort I make – whether that’s email marketing, social media marketing, or print marketing – is trying to get people to my website. My website is where people can contact me, book sessions, and purchase my services and products.
The other massively important reason having a website is important is that it establishes you as a professional. That being said, if your website needs an update or is a bit cheesy, or if the branding on it isn’t very clear, that can be an issue and actually make you seem less professional. But overall, having a website gives you a more credible, professional presence than just having your portfolio on a social media channel.
Nowadays, there are countless options that are both affordable and well designed for creating a website. There really isn’t an excuse to have one! It’s an investment in your business and your work that will pay off, and if you don’t have one it will most likely hurt you in the long run!
My favorite option for creating a website for creative brands is using Flothemes in conjunction with WordPress. The main reasons I love Flothemes are:
- Their templates are GORGEOUS. They look high end, expensive, and are designed to help you have a strong brand presence.
- Their SEO friendly. Both Flothemes and WordPress provide many tools and ways you can increase your SEO presence, which makes it easier for potential clients to find you.
- They are SO easy to use. Every page you create has a variety of templates you can choose from and easily fill in with your own images and text. These are easily customizable since you can drag the blocks around, delete or add extra blocks, and even design your own blocks with their new plugin, Flexblock. This leads to my next point, which is…
- They are completely customizable. You can move around any component of the website you’d like! And if there’s an aesthetic feature that you want, that isn’t inside the template already, you can build it yourself in their plugin, Flexblock. The plugin designer is so easy to use as well – it’s drag and drop, which is perfect for us visual folks.
- Their customer service is top notch. If after all these resources something isn’t working well for you, you can submit a service ticket, and a representative will reply promptly to help you resolve the issue. They’ve always answered quickly and have been very helpful whenever I had a question.
- One time payment. Once you purchase the theme, you don’t ever have to buy it again – there are no subscription fees, except for hosting your website which tends to be pretty cheap (I use SiteGround for around $75 a year, or around $6 a month). The designs are timeless and customizable, so they look beautiful and current for a long time. And with Flexblock, you can always spice things up a bit when you want an update or refresh. They are also coming out with a subscription service where you can use any design block from any theme they offer, but I digress! If you buy the theme, it’s a one time purchase, which tends to be cheaper than other services like Squarespace.
Next week I’ll be sharing more about why I love Flothemes, and will be sharing more of their features. I genuinely think they are one of the best options out there for a website for creative brands and photographers. Keep an eye out for that post in my education blog section, but in the meantime take a look around their site here!!