Huh? What the heck is an article about football place kicking techniques doing here?
Well, actually this isn't really an article about that. I know very little about football, and even less about place kicking. But I met someone who apparently does know quite a bit about it, and I think he should have a website. As it turns out, he is in a very good position to have a very successful web site dealing with training hopeful young place kickers, and the reason he doesn't have it is just that he was ill-advised in a number of areas.
I met Paul at my gym this past Saturday. I have seen him there many times before, but never spoken to him. He does an intense workout, not stopping much for idle chatter, and we never happened to be in the same place at the same time long enough for any conversation to develop. But this time, we happened to get into a conversation (about coffee and ice cream, strangely enough), and at some point we inquired about each others profession and I found out that he coaches football and does very specific training of place kicking. I opined that it sounded to me like his business could benefit from a presence on the web, but he immediately said something unexpected: "I've done a search for 'football place kicking' and there are half a million matches. Nobody would ever find me."
I said, "That's true if you aren't on the first page or so. But I think you can be".
He looked surprised. "How?".
"Well", I said, "it's all about content". I explained how my site which is very specialized, just like training place kickers, enjoys a top position in many searches. I said that if he could write about what he knows best, and write enough to get people interested, he could be in the top positions.
He cocked his head and said "You know, I've already written most of a book about this. And I've looked at the competition, and nobody else talks about the things I talk about in that book".
I shrugged my shoulders. "You're half way there then - more than half way. You can use chapters from that book on your website, and there's probably lots of related stuff you could write about too".
"So", he said, "I need to hire a web designer".
"No", I shook my head. "You really don't. You might want to if you aren't the artistic sort, but you really don't have to: you can do it just on the value of content. Microsoft Word can make web pages, and there are better programs for cheap money. You can do your own pages".
He looked even more surprised. "Well, I am a bit artistic. I did all the illustrations for the book, and I actually do know a fair amount about layout and design. So what do I need? A big server?"
It was my turn to be surprised. "With those skills, you have it made. But no, you don't need, or even want, to run your own server. You pay someone like Interland to host it for you. You can start out cheap, and move up to the bigger versions when you need to".
That's where we left it. I invited him to email me for more information. For example, I recommend Poor Richard's Web Site as a non-technical book anyone contemplating their own website should read. I also recommend reading my Search Engine Optimization Firms article, and Web Site Promotion and Popularity.
He'd also want to know how to track his popularity. Alexa can help with that. If he has a little money to put to use, advertising at Google can get him some additional traffic. If he can become as popular as I suspect he can, he can later turn that around and sell Google ads.
If he is right that his competitors (people who run training camps to teach football place kicking) don't have what he has to offer, he should be able to compete against them quite successfully. The Internet is a great equalizer: his competitors may be bigger, or have more cash to spread around in traditional advertising venues, but on the web, he has a very good shot at doing it better than they do.
Got something to add? Send me email.
More Articles by Tony Lawrence © 2009-11-07 Tony Lawrence
What do such machines really do? They increase the number of things we can do without thinking. Things we do without thinking — there's the real danger. (Frank Herbert)