COVID-19 Update

You’ve likely heard us talk about our three company values, the first being open. In response to the forecasted spread of COVID-19, and the projections of associated health risks, we’re staying open … from our homes. The Willow team has gone virtual. (At least for the time being.) We’re available by phone, text, video chat, email, and Zoom. In-person meetings will only be held when absolutely necessary for the health of all involved. Our working hours remain 8am to 5pm EDT.


Better Digital

Digital Icon

Without strategy and design, digital marketing is really just tools and channels.

We’re not saying these things don’t matter. They do. So we hire smart people who know how to build and use the tools and make them play nice together. But for a minute, let’s forget about what content management system your website is built on or what email marketing software you have. Because the truth of the matter is, your customers don’t care. Unless it isn’t working for them. Then they care a lot.

Our process starts with understanding the needs of your audience. What they want, where they live online, how they access information. When we can answer those questions about them, we’re better equipped to serve your needs, too. It’s a win-win. Then we can plan, design, build, test, launch, and measure digital solutions that provide a fluid user experience and an engaging brand experience.

Digital marketing is a two-way conversation. One that often starts with a question typed into a dialog box with a problem tied to the end of it. We want to help you answer the question, engage the audience, solve the problem.


Creative, Digital


Branding, Creative, Digital, Research

Want better digital? Let’s Talk.


Who will host my new website?

That’s up to you, really. We can host it for you if you’d like, or you can host it with someone else. We’re not the jealous type, really. Of course, we DO have intimate knowledge of the new site and a certain 24/7 protective feeling toward all our “babies.” But really, you decide. There are lots of third-party platforms you can choose from. So let’s talk early about your needs and what we can offer. If you decide to leave the nest, we’ll make sure we’ve accounted for any unique server requirements from your hosting platform so that everything runs smoothly. Just make sure to write home every now and then.

What CMS do you build on?

We’re primarily a WordPress house, but not exclusively. We’ve just found that for the most part, WordPress gives us a robust framework that can meet the majority of our clients’ needs and can grow with the client. It also happens to be really user-friendly, which is a huge consideration, because you don’t want to have to call us every time you want to upload an image or make a blog post, do you? We provide training so you can do those kinds of things yourself. WordPress sites are also search engine–friendly, so that’s a bonus.

Of course, we don’t know anything about you yet. If it turns out that WordPress isn’t the right solution for your unique needs, we can cross that bridge with confidence. Our developers are experienced in both .NET and PHP languages, so we can suggest the right CMS or even provide a custom solution if you need us to. Our loyalty is to you, not to the CMS.

What exactly is SEO, anyway?

Technically speaking, SEO, or search engine optimization, refers to the efforts made to improve your site’s visibility in search engines. Practically speaking, it’s the things we do to help prove to search engines that 1) you are who you say you are, 2) your website content is relevant, and 3) you have (or are!) the answer to the question someone just typed into the search box.

SEO can affect everything from whether you show up in a search for your very own name or in a Google Maps listing in your city, to ranking at the top of the search results with your latest white paper. It’s not just about keywords and backlinks anymore, although they still come into play. More and more, it’s your content that makes the difference. It’s complicated and nuanced, and, honestly, it’s a constantly changing game that you need to stay on top of. Or at least know someone who can. Know anybody like that? We do.

How many times do I need to mention an important keyword on my site?

There’s no magic formula here. This is what we meant when we said it’s not about keywords, it’s about content. These days, search engines like Google are much more concerned with quality content and good user experience than keyword frequency. In fact, if it looks like you’re trying too hard (“keyword stuffing”), you can get dinged for that, which could negatively impact your search rankings. Search engines are getting better and better at reading your pages like a human (we know, technology can sometimes seem a little creepy), so while it’s important to know what keywords you want to rank for and to use those in appropriate places on your pages, you should write for humans first, search engines second. But don’t tell the search engines we said that. It might hurt their almost-human feelings.

What’s the most cost-efficient way to get more traffic to my website?

This is one of those times where we have to answer your question with a question (or five).

– Is more traffic actually the goal?

– Why?

– Who do you want that traffic to be?

– What do you want these “traffic” folks to do when they get to your website?

– Do they need to do it within a particular time period?

When we understand the real goal, we can suggest the most cost-effective ways to get there. SEO, for example, usually requires an up-front investment in website and content optimization, but once your site’s in good shape, as long as you keep the content current and relevant, you can see exponential growth over time without much additional expense. Paid advertising, on the other hand, can be a quick way to get new visitors, but requires a continuous investment in ad spend, as well as measurement and management of campaigns. There are a variety of tactics we can use, including social media marketing and affiliate marketing. But it’s not packaged into one-size-fits-all baskets. It’s your basket and only your basket. Or call it a cart if you prefer.

Should I be spending time on social media or a blog?

Social media platforms and content marketing can be powerful ways to engage your audience in conversation, promote your brand, and drive traffic and conversions on your website. But let’s not fool ourselves: to do it right can take a lot of time and resources. So before you invest, get to know your audience, how they consume content, and how and where they interact online. This is a question that should be explored as a part of your overall marketing strategy.

How can I make my website more effective?

While there are certain best practices all websites should follow, any recommendations we would make would depend on what your specific goals are and what “effective” means to you. When we perform a site audit, we look at how visitors interact with your site now: how they find you, which pages they visit most, when they leave. We also look at SEO, content, and design.

We take all of that, along with what we know about your audience and your goals, and from there, we can start to give advice. Some fixes are easy, like narrowing down the focus of a page, redesigning the way a form works, or moving a call to action to a more obvious location. Other fixes take a little more strategic grit. We start with best practices, but we move quickly to what’s best for you and your audience.

How long will my new website take?

That’s a question that will have to wait until we know each other a little better. What we can tell you now is that we won’t accept work that we don’t have time to do right or can’t complete on time. We have a process for planning, designing, and developing websites, and it works best when we follow it. If you have a timeline, let us know. And if we have concerns that it’s too aggressive for what your needs are, we’ll let you know. We’re open like that.

We don’t do “instant websites,” and we know that for most people, a year is too long. On average, our sweet spot for websites is around four to six months from discovery to launch, but that’s spitballing, so don’t take it to the bank. Talk to us instead.

Do you ever outsource work?

We’re not experts at everything. So if there are aspects of the work that we believe require expertise or experience outside of our own, we owe it to you to bring in an expert. That’s why we have a network of trusted partners we feel confident will deliver the same level of work we’d expect from our own team. And while they may be completing certain tasks, we continue to project-manage their work and take full responsibility for the success of the project.