Marketing for a web design business

I’d like to chat about marketing for my small web design business.  I’ve got to this point without needing to do much marketing, however, to grow, I need to be doing something!  What’s your advice?

Having looked at many, many web design agency websites, there is one clear point of difference which you creative-web-designshave that others do not have.  You BOTH do web design and you’re a Shopify expert.

But the website doesn’t separate the customer journey (pathway through the site) for these two groups.  It’s important to shortcut the number of clicks a visitor makes on their discovery through your site.

Recommend: Separate links to detail pages for these two services

I asked you about the split in clients between web and Shopify – and you told me it was about 50:50.  Then you told me some of your clients were first timers – getting a website or ecommerce store for the first time.  This group needs to be treated differently from clients who know how to buy web services.  This group can lose you money as they are inexperienced.

Recommend: Set up a page for FirstTimers to guide them through how to brief an agency.

You also told me that some of your work is advice, particularly for Shopify clients.  You charge an hourly rate for this work.  This is a good rate, but it’s non-repeating business.

Recommend: You offer two services for advice.  One is straight advice; the other is training.  Double your charges for training because you are teaching clients how to be self-sufficient and to run their own Shopify stores.

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Entrepreneurship and business course

What’s the best entrepreneurship / business course?

A question I answered in Quora forum: “What’s the best entrepreneurship or business course – it can be free or paid”.

The best course of action is to go apprentice yourself to an entrepreneur you respect and learn by working with/for them. I suggest doing this before or at the same time as starting your own business. Experience is worth a load more than book-learning from theoreticians.

I do not recommend paying $$$ for a university course UNLESS it is part time and closely aligned with working on a business you are currently running. Then you get to put into practice what you are being taught immediately.

I teach on a business course here in New Zealand called the Business Leadership Programme – by Love to Grow.

It takes 6 months and is 1 day per month with one-to-one coaching sessions in between formal classroom sessions. I recommend you ask them if you can join it virtually – the next course starts October 2016. It made a gigantic change to my business and taught me a lot about the parts of business entrepreneurship that I didn’t know (and the things I didn’t realise I needed to know!).

Shortcomings of book learning entrepreneurs

I find that any book, magazine or podcast that gives advice is helpful – but only up to a point. The authors never, NEVER talk in full detail about their mistakes, their mis-directions, bad decisions and failures. They may reference them, but you will not get the full picture.

The value is in experiencing these situations and learning from them.

If I were to tell you in public about experiences I’ve had like a bullying client, a supplier who stole from us, a bad person we hired etc you would begin to get more of an idea. But it would be unprofessional to write these things in public and I may get sued. But it is the EXPERIENCE of these situations that helps you to grow as a business person and entrepreneur.

My personal solutions to the need for experience and a fully rounded business education is on-the-job learning (reading / podcasts / business books / mentor advice) supplemented by:

  1. Chief Financial Officer meeting monthly
  2. The Business Leadership Programme educating and honing skills
  3. Mastermind Group of business owners – we meet monthly face to face and share / seek advice in a trusted, confidential roundtable. [We have a vacancy for 2 people to join our Auckland group – please ask]

What is your advice on how to learn entrepreneurship?

Accelerate Lab

Get your business headed in the right direction with Accelerate Lab

Accelerate Lab is a downloadable DIY programme to take entrepreneurs through the business planning process. It includes support and a “fresh pair of eyes” to overview your current operations.
The programme is designed to enable business owners to visualise their business model, and check that the systems and structure and documentation are in place and your brand and marketing is focused and aligned, so that you can achieve the profitability results you want. Try the free diagnostic planning questionnaire, available on the website to assess which areas of your business might need attention.

What’s in it for business owners?

  • Clarity;
  • Increased profitability;
  • A sound platform on which to add more volume;
  • Credibility with external funders;
  • Risk management;
  • Use of proven systems and templates for speed and economy.

The programme is broken down into 4 modules, based upon a project management framework for efficiency and each module includes a worksheet document with diagrams and tables. The outputs are visual and crystallised, so that you can easily see and feel the high-level information, priorities, options and steps.

Examples are:

  • A one page step-up cash flow model, that shows each stage in the path to growth, at what stage/income or production level do you need to expand your resources? What does that mean for your business’s profitability.
  • A family tree of your total potential market segments/niches with your niches markets highlighted.
  • A niche/opportunity evaluation ranking table which enables you to assess any opportunity against the existing and each other, to identify the best opportunities and determine what you should focus on or do next.

Entrepreneurs can elect to do the entire programme (to satisfy an investors or funders for risk management purposes) or just select the modules they need. Each module comes with a specified number of support hours included which is detailed on the website: www.acceleratelab.co.nz

Accelerate Lab has been developed from the Start-Up Lab process for pre-trading businesses and uses a similar structure. Launched in early 2016 and currently having businesses trialling the programme, Accelerate Lab is working with them to ensure that it fully meets businesses needs. In return for a testimonial, it’s been offered a 30% discount on the normal prices on the website for selected businesses. If you would like to be part of the trial programme please contact [email protected] before 30 June 2016.

Will Technology Define Successful Events in 2016?

Event Technology is developing and defining the way we plan and create events in brand new ways. Loseberger is a UK company working with events. They recently published these infographics about how technology is developing and how it’s being used to make events more effective. Take a look and let us know what you think!

Event Technology: Will This Define Success in 2016?

Learn How to Growth Hack your Website in May

Learn How to Growth Hack your Website in May

What it means to Growth Hack.

Growth Hacking is a new phrase meaning to aggressively make a step-change in business success.  It’s not just a cute phrase, there are specific techniques which can make significant improvements to website success.

You define success and we’ll teach you how to make it happen.

What is your #1 marketing and sales problem?

Get the answers about how you can growth hack your web success with USA experts Dan Morris and Rachel Martin during May 2016.

Face to face consult or small group workshops.

Email [email protected] with your #1 marketing and sales problem.

Rachel Martin website GrowthHacking expert

Rachel Martin website GrowthHacking expert

 

 

SEO Tools

7 Tools to Improve Your SEO

Improving the SEO for your business is very important. When potential customers search for your products and services you obviously want to appear as high in the search engine rankings as possible. In order to do so, your SEO has to be better than your competitors. Google and other search engines will rank what they think is relevant to what is searched for. Therefore, you have to make sure Google thinks your business is relevant to rank. The higher ranking you get on Google, the more likely you will be to drive more traffic to your website. So, what do you do and where do you start?

BrightLocal’s 7 SEO tools

BrightLocal is a company that specializes in SEO tools that help businesses grow through the effective use of search marketing. Today, BrightLocal have more than 20,000 customers worldwide using their 7 SEO tools.

1. Local Search Rank Checker

The first tool is the Local Search Rank Checker. It tracks your ranking on search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo and it covers both organic and local search rankings. You have the opportunity to set up this tool to run a report automatically every month or week and you can compare your result to previous reports. Decide what settings will work best for your business. Finally, the report is also available for you to download. Keep track on your ranking and make sure it goes up!

2. Local SEO Check-up

The Local SEO Check-up tool provides a fast and comprehensive audit of a business’ local SEO set-up. It’s a complete local SEO audit tool that runs more than 300 automatic SEO checks. It enables you to speed up your SEO audits and it only takes 5 minutes to set up! You get a clear and accurate report within 15 minutes which you can share directly with clients and prospects. The things this tool checks includes: inbound links, domain authority, your presence on the most important local directories, social media, and Google Places.

3. Google+ Local Wizard

You use Google+ Local Wizard to quickly analyze you Google+ optimization and benchmark your business against your top 10 local competitors. You can also see your ranking on Google+ for your key terms.

4. CitationTracker

CitationTracker is a tool that helps you find, track and manage your local citations. A citation is a listing for your business on a third party site, for example; on a review site like Yelp. By using this tool you will get help with your citations in four different ways. It will help you find existing citations, locate old and incorrect citations, spy on your competitors citations and track the change you make to your current citations. You can also find new citations by locating your top 5 competitors and list your business on the same site!

5. CitationBurst

The CitationBurst tool helps you if you don’t want to go through the labours of manual citation building yourself. CitationBurst will do it for you! It gives you the chance to submit to multiple directories at one time and help to generate listings on local, general and niche directory sites. Pick what sites you want to submit to and CitationBurst will complete the submissions for you within 14 days.

6. ReviewFlow

What ReviewFlow does is that it locates and monitors online reviews on important directories and reviews sites. Using this tool makes it possible to find existing reviews and track all new reviews you receive. ReviewFlow keeps track on all major review sites such as Google+, Yelp and Tripadvisor. By collecting reviews from all sites the report makes it easier for you to read and comment your reviews. You can schedule the report to update monthly, weekly or even daily.

7. ReviewBiz

The final tool is ReviewBiz. It gives you the opportunity of adding a ReviewBiz badge to your website. Create and customize your button and copy paste the code onto your website. By doing that, your clients can easily click-through to a review site of your choice to read and add reviews about your business. Positive reviews will boost your local ranking!

SEO Tools

Image credit: pixabay.com

Know your audience better with Audience Industries Circles

Know your audience better with Audience Industries Circles

How well do you really know your audience?

Do you know what their interests are, what they want and need? Sure, we’d like to think it’s all about us and our brand. But there are strategies to reach your audience in a way that will get them engaged in you and your brand that goes beyond the surface of what you think they want from you. There are tried and true ways for you to know your audience better.

What’s your common denominator?

Find out what you have in common with your audience so you can be the brand that they trust. Engage them to keep them coming back to you. If you’re a marketing communication manager, in public relations, an agency marketer or have done the Audience Industries Sequoia curriculum, you should understand what to do, how and when you need to to make sure your audience comes back to you… every time.

Get to know your audience better with Audience Industries Circles

Audience Industries is coming to a town near you in May and are bringing Circles with them. Really good news for you. The course is broken up into 7 modules that will help you to really get to know your audience. Audience Industries wants to show you how to bring your audience to you, over and over again. Keep them coming back by speaking their language, learning their paths and optimize your ads to deliver maximum value for your site. Because we know, it’s all about the money.

Here’s what’s in store for you if you sign up for Circles:

  • Module 1: Learn what your audience has in common with you
  • Module 2: Be the brand/business that your audience trusts
  • Module 3: Find out what your audience wants and needs
  • Module 4: Break down the elements of compelling stories and apply them to YOUR story
  • Module 5: Understand what makes your audience take actions on your site and use the information for good
  • Module 6: Get the strategies that create likes, clicks, shares… real engagement on your social media channels
  • Module 7: What you should know before you optimize your ads

Sound like something your business needs?

We thought it might. That’s why founders Dan Morris and Rachel Martin are bringing Audience Industries to New Zealand for the second time. The Circles curriculum is coming to these big NZ cities this May, so book your tickets now while there’s still time:

It’s not just the Circles curriculum that’s coming to town.

If you think the Circles curriculum is good… you’re right! But Audience Industries has 3 other curricula that we think you should take a look at, too, to help you grow your business in an online world. Read more about the Audience Industries NZ Tour from Creative Agency Secrets to see just what else you can learn from Dan and Rachel. Don’t waste any more time wondering how to grow you business revenue online! Book your tickets for a city near you now.

Audience Industries Will Help You Drive Revenue Online

Audience Industries Will Help You Drive Revenue Online

Are you new to digital communications, work in marketing or as a web admin? Good. You’ll want to hear this:

Your online activities for your business can significantly monetize your audience!

Maybe you knew this already but, if you’re here, you may need a little help getting to that point. Lucky you, we have just the thing! The Audience Industries NZ tour is coming to town!

How Audience Industries Will Help You Drive Revenue Online

The Audience Industries program is made up of 4 separate curricula, which together cover everything you need to know about increasing your online profitability.

Let’s focus on the most widely applicable course, the Sequoia curriculum. With 6 modules and 4-8 hours of your time, learn how to turn around your online efforts in simple ways that will make a huge difference to your business.

  1. Learn your audience’s ladder of value, where they came from and when they’ll be ready for you.
  2. Keep the audience coming back for more with pro marketing.
  3. Build the ultimate audience with every word you write.
  4. Stand out so your audience can find you.
  5. Find out how to get your audience from each of your social media platforms to you.
  6. Don’t sell yourself short. Your knowledge is worth a lot more. Start to understand pricing, format and what to expect in the future.

Intrigued?

I thought you might be. When it comes to your business, what you’ll take away from the Sequoia course will be invaluable. There’s no question.

Dan Morris and Rachel Martin

Founders of Audience Industries and your online marketing gurus for the tour, will be arriving on our shores in May to share their marketing expertise with us.  Are you in or near Auckland, Dunedin, or Wellington? If so, read more about the tour and book your spot now while the going is still good!

If you want to improve your online revenue for your business, don’t let this tour pass you up. Book now and take the first step towards maximising the potential of your website.

Grow Your Online Marketing Programme with Audience Industries

Grow Your Online Marketing Programme with Audience Industries

Grow Your Online Marketing Programme with Audience Industries

Let’s get serious about your online marketing programme

Do you want to make your business work? Of course you do. So get serious about your success and let’s talk about what it’s really going to take for your online marketing programme to get you the numbers you want from your website.

Audience Industries is coming to New Zealand for a second year in a row and these two international experts from the US, Dan Morris and Rachel Martin, want to sit down with you and show you what you need to know to operate your business online and make it successful.

A sneak peek of what you’ll take away from the courses: Escape Velocity

Do you know how much you make per visitor? Per pageview? How much should you really be spending on your online marketing efforts? You’ll get the tools you need to find out and take action to make your online business pump out the numbers you want to see. Set your goals and learn from Dan and Rachel just how to achieve them with Escape Velocity.

Sound like you? This is just one of four courses in the curriculum for the Audience Industries NZ tour. You want to grow your online marketing programme? This is it. Sign up for Escape Velocity in Auckland for April 29th and learn how to tighten up your goals and really reach them.

What else can you look forward to in the 2016 Audience Industries NZ tour?

  • Auckland, April 29th – Escape Velocity Curriculum

  • Auckland, May 1st – Sequoia Curriculum

  • Dunedin, May 3rd half day – Sequoia Curriculum

  • Dunedin, May 4th half day – Circles Curriculum

  • Wellington, May 5thSequoia Curriculum

  • Wellington, May 6thCircles Curriculum

  • Auckland, May 9th – Circles Curriculum

  • Auckland, May 10th – Clusters Curriculum

Click through to read about each course in depth including the curriculum.

If you’re ready for Escape Velocity, book now and ready yourself for an event that will take you straight to the heart of the 5 key metrics you need to know as a business to operate successfully online.