HOW TO BUILD YOUR ONLINE PRESENCE
(A PEACOCK ANALOGY)
Article by Joyanne Howell
So you may have already known that peacocks are really the male version of peafowls. The females are called peahens and their (less-striking) brown feathers are designed to keep them camouflaged while caring for their young. You may also have known that males display their elaborate tails – called trains – as a form of courtship. Hey girl, hey! ;)
But did you know that peacocks were also masters of technology AND marketing? It’s true! Read on to learn 4 surprising facts about peacocks and see what cool secrets we can learn from these majestic birds.
Fact #1: Peacocks are not born with their beauty.
In fact, at birth they are brown and look very much like their mothers. It takes 3 years for peacocks to start showing their trains! This reminds me of one of the quotes I often teach my website students: Form follows function. In other words, what it does, comes before what it looks like.
All too often, website creation is approached from a “design first” perspective. The look and feel are prioritized over the actual purpose and content of the site. While the beauty and esthetics of a website are certainly important, it is functionality that should always be at the core of your website building. Don’t be afraid to launch your site, even if it’s not as beautiful as you would like. Focus first on creating a sound strategy with solid content. The design aspects can always be tweaked and improved as you grow. Fortunately, our programs make sure that you don’t have to compromise on neither form nor function.
Take-away tip: Looking fabulous takes time. Focus on your content and let the beauty follow.
Fact #2: Peacock feathers are like dog-whistles.
Once those stunning trains are fully grown, it’s time to put them to the test. Peacocks ready to attract a mate, will raise and fan their trains, hoping to woo a female. But the trains have a hidden secret weapon. Peacock feathers make infrasonic sounds that only female peahens can hear. Human ears can’t hear it. Scientist believe that the fanned shape of the train actually acts somewhat like a speaker, to help radiate the sound waves that it is sending out. Pretty slick!
In marketing terms, this is a perfect example of targeting your specific niche. In tech terms, this is a wonderful example of using your technology (specifically shaped train) to amplify your very targeted message. Peacocks for the win!
Take-away tip: Use your tech to target your specific niche. Everything else is just noise!
Fact #3: Peacock feathers are colored by crystals.
The natural world abounds with animals and sea creatures in every different color of the rainbow. Typically, most of the colors that humans perceive are due to pigmentation. However, peacocks have evolved a very different strategy for creating their colors. Microscopic crystal-like structures, called photonic crystals, reflect light of different wavelengths. Combined with specific placement and spacing, this helps to create the amazing fluorescent colors that make peacocks so striking. Science has found that the lady peahens go for the brightest and boldest males.
These birds have evolved a unique method of standing out from the crowd. It not only gets them noticed but also helps to ensure their survival as a species. In the online world, being seen key to building your business. Visibility and uniqueness go a very long way in world of look-alike websites and social platforms.
Take-away tip: It’s OK to stand out. Evolve your own unique strategy and be ok with not doing it like everyone else.
Fact #4: Peacocks loose their feathers every year.
First, it takes years to grow them. Then they shake them and proudly show them (all for the ladies, of course). Then, once mating season is over, peacocks actually shed their lovely trains. Gasp! That turns out to be a good thing though, because it means that they do not have to be hunted (by humans) for their prized feathers. But, every year peacocks have to grow yet another set of those stunners. What can we learn from this?
Actually, the online space is a pretty fast-moving, ever-evolving place to be. Updating your website and your other online properties on a regular basis is necessary. You want to stay fresh, relevant and as up-to-date with the latest trends that make sense for your business. You won’t need to start from scratch every time however. Starting with a sound strategy and keeping your online presence active and well maintained will reduce the need for a full overhaul.
Take-away tip: Revise and conquer. Regular maintenance and refreshing your website should be part of your online plan.