20 Mar Unpacking why Microsites are so important
Microsites are a useful platform for businesses and brands to reach their target consumers. The term tends to be interchangeable with other terms like “branded blog”, “communication platform,” or “independent campaign”. They’re all essentially the same thing. They basically; a website that publishes content for a brand to try and drive interaction and engagement with the brand.
Microsites are also one of the things that businesses and brands can use to reach their consumers in this time of CORVID-19. With usual avenues, closed, such as branded events, brands and businesses must find a way to reach their consumers in a way that is both interactive, innovative and engaging.
But what is a Microsite?
A microsite is a site with branded content that exists outside a brand or businesses homepage. All that makes a microsite different from a company-branded platform is that the URL probably does not include the name of the company that is sponsoring the website. So by registering a new domain name, that’s a microsite.
What types of Microsites are there?
These are two main categories for microsites, sites based around a campaign, and websites that will publish regular content, for an undisclosed amount of time.
These are independent websites created solely to anchor or support a branded campaign. They’re launched and filled with content, amplified using the strategy that the brand wants, and left alone.
One example of a campaign-based microsite would be Fu2016.com was created to promote the premiere of Season 4 of the Netflix series “House of Card”. The microsite poked fun at politics and built hype and interest in the series. The site invited visitors to join the main character, Underwood’s movement and rally support for “important” issues like inequality and entitlement.A
But the best part about the microsite had been the design, combined with Underwood’s attention-grabbing, shifty eyes and high-quality videos; the microsite provided good reasons for users to stay and continue to engage with the content.
The advantage of campaign-based microsites is that you can build it, amplify it, and then leave it to grow. If the microsite is a great one, then traffic will roll in regardless. Brands and businesses can choose to update the microsite occasionally, or amplify it on an ongoing basis; however, the bulk of the work put into developing is over.
Micro-sites that continue to post content for the foreseeable future.
These sites are like media sites, such that they continue to publish original content regularly, and they never stop unless the plug is pulled.
One good example of a website like this is Red Bull’s, Red Bulletin. The site acts like an online magazine that publishes daily, full staffing, redesigns and steady growth.
These sort of microsites are harder to launch successfully; they’re not easy to launch, grow and maintain a content site that stays relevant. But if that can be executed successfully, then businesses and brands can use these fun ways to engage customers and continue to stay and grow in relevance.
How beneficial are microsites?
Consumers want interactive and engaging content, and businesses and brands need to learn that microsites can help with that. Microsites also have plenty of benefits linked to them.
Microsites help in creating and increasing brand awareness.
Microsites feature some of the more significant elements of a brand or business in a tangible way that allows for interaction with visitors. Microsites are also created to be highly shareable across social media platforms. This can help boost brand awareness and escalate a brand’s growth potential.
One great example includes Zach Golden’s WhatTheF*ckShouldIMakeForDinner.com. The creator of the website had written a book called What The F*ck Should I Make For Dinner? And the website was a simple way to promote his book. The microsite had been interactive, and people could choose whether they liked the option that was being offered to them, or keep refreshing the page.
The website has been running since 2010, and now serves up to 48 million recipes. It’s a simple, low-maintenance site that is both interactive and engaging for consumers.
Another food-related local example would be NTUC Foodfare, this microsite was created by Infinity Core. The project was for Foodfare’s Chef’s Finest Products listings and survey and was part of the marketing launch with the Chef’s Finest’s brand of ready-made food.
Microsites are easy to gamify
Microsites are a great way to create games that can work on mobile, computers and tablets. They are easier to make than mobile applications, and consumers don’t have to spend time downloading the application to play the game, they can go to a URL and join the fun.
A local example would be the Weiken.com, Singapore Grand Prix Formula 1. Infinity Core developed the microsite for Weiken.com in conjunction with the SGP F1 night race. The promotional game campaign was released to increase brand awareness, and let consumers have fun and compete with each other to win prizes.
The game was addictive and straightforward that was developed for PC, Mobile and Tablet users. Altogether, the campaign helped Weiken.com gather up to 1,800 like on their Facebook Post with more than 100 active users per day.
Another example of a game is the web browser interactive game that Infinity Core developed for Singapore Airlines.
The web game was published and deployed to a microsite that was mobile responsive, which allowed users to play the game on their own computer and mobile devices. Users had to collect items that represented places that they would be able to spend to receive air miles. The game was deployed in over 20 countries and can be found here.
Cost is negligible in a Microsite creation.
In a microsite, there are usually a lesser amount of web pages; the cost and the time that is taken to create and set up one is significantly lower. Microsites often only have a cluster of web pages that contain all the essential and exciting content.
One of the more well-known microsites would be Spotify’s Wrapped. The microsite is an interactive website that is personalised for each user, based on the user’s listening habits. The microsite makes it easy for users to create a personalised recap which creates a unique experience for each user, making it fun to share and compare with their friends. Every statistic that is shown can also be easily shared on social media.
Every year, thousands of Spotify users return to the website and check their wrapped for the year. Every year, there are thousands of tweets, Instagram stories shared about their music during the year, thereby creating an experience for its current users, and making potential new consumers interested in using Spotify. The website is also relatively simple and consists of a few pages. The website isn’t available all year round as well, making paying for the domain name short-term.
So should brands invest in Microsites during this time of CORVID-19?
Microsites are one of the best ways to target consumers during this period of CORVID-19; brands should not sleep at this time. As a result of CORVID-19, consumers are going out less. So instead of targeting consumers at onsite events and outdoor advertising, brands should focus on online campaigns as those will always be accessible to consumers.
If you want to find out more ways to combat COVID-19, read our previous article here.
With all the current uncertainty for brands and businesses, Infinity Core wants to help you find an innovative, interactive and engaging microsite solution and reach out to your consumers. Visit our website, https://infinitycore.sg/works, to find out more about what we do.