How to Make a Powerful Elevator Pitch for Your Website

An elevator pitch is a compelling synopsis of your business you can deliver in the time it takes to travel between floors in an elevator. Whether you’ll ever give a pitch in an elevator is moot – the real benefit is the ability to explain what you do in a comprehensible, convincing and compelling manner.

How often has the question “what is it you do again” flummoxed you? Explaining what you do to another person can sometimes be hard. Crafting an elevator pitch is the perfect way to have a concise description of what you do ready to go when the opportunity to convince someone to use your product or services arises. Here are some tips to help you build your elevator pitch.

Know your business

Crafting a great elevator pitch will get you thinking about how to condense your message into something memorable and attention-grabbing. This process can help you understand your business better so you have something meaningful to follow up with if pressed for more information.

Take the time to understand what is behind the pitch and you should end up with lots of concise nuggets of information that can be put to good use in your collateral and on your website —more on that later.

Don’t undersell yourself

It is fine to use sales-y terms just make sure they’re relevant. If you’re number one, pioneering something, or industry recognised then say so. Keep it short, concise and ensure you mention your business name and what you do in plain English.

E.g. “Webuyyourwheels.com is the number one vehicle valuation and purchasing company in Australia. We buy any road-worthy vehicle and pioneering the instant price check and one click sales method with same day payments and the best average purchase price in the business.”

Avoid jargon

Never make the assumption that your audience knows what you are talking about. “I work for the market leader in vehicular acquisition and asset amortisation maximisation” isn’t going to capture anyone’s attention even if they do understand what that means. Buzzwords and jargon can come off a little superior so speak only in plain English.

Use a question

Questions in elevator pitches are excellent for grabbing attention or gauging interest. E.g. “Have you ever sold a car? (Yes) Did it take more than a day? (Yes) With webuyyourwheels.com you can get an instant online valuation and sell your car with one click. You can get paid the same day too. Here’s my business card with the QR code to download our free app.”

One of the additional benefits of creating an elevator pitch is it gives you so much quality material to use in your collateral and on your website. Featuring elevator pitch material in web design has become really popular. It helps generate leads and keeps sites clean of unnecessary copy.  It’s the simplest way of letting your site visitors know precisely what you’re about in a clear and concise terms.

Elevator pitches on websites are superb uses of white space and you can really make it sing by making good use of typography and colour to emblazon a bold statement on your website. It can be used across your social media to form a coherent narrative and on your landing pages.

Landing pages are often full of rich media, copy and internal hyperlinks which can take a little time to load. A pared back page with a powerful elevator pitch and compelling call to action would load in half the time and keep your most relevant visitors interested.

An elevator pitch is worth taking the time to craft so it is easily understood and says precisely what you do. And when done well it can really enhance your website’s ability to generate leads.

What makes a great logo?

A great logo can provide your company with a boost but actually visualising an image that embodies your company and projects what you stand for isn’t easy. Creating it is even harder so this article seeks to help you understand what you need to consider during the logo design phase.

The five main principles of design are: simplicity, memorability, adaptability, uniqueness and colour scheme. When your logo is being designed make a checklist of these five things to measure how viable and appropriate your logo will be.

Simplicity and memorability

Great logos are memorable and easy to describe. Ask the next person you see to describe, not draw, these logos including the colour scheme: McDonald’s, Apple, Twitter, Facebook, Nike, Adidas, Qantas and Vegemite. They’ll pretty much describe them to a T because those logos are simple and memorable.

Iconic brands like Starbucks are the exception to this which proves not all logos have to be overly simple but the easier your logo is to describe out loud the more eye-catching it will be in actuality.

Adaptability

Logos needs to be versatile so when designing a logo consider all of the mediums it will feature in. Detailed logos can lose a lot of its effectiveness when shrunk as they can if the colour is changed. Your logo is going to look different on a billboard than it will on a computer screen, in a magazine, on a business card or company stationary.

Uniqueness

They say there is nothing new under the sun but that isn’t an excuse for not even trying for some innovation. Copying logos or even taking heavy inspiration from a popular design isn’t a great idea as you risk looking cheap or being sued for plagiarism. Anyway, you want your logo to be about you, not a knocked off version of someone else.

Colour scheme

For branding experts it’s possible to identify patterns in logo colours that fit certain feelings and how they play a part in purchasing decisions and brand association. A study undertaken by the University of Winnipeg, Canada, found that almost 9 in 10 initial reactions to products and logos could be linked back to the colour.

The Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science also found that purchasing decisions can be affected by how colours manipulate and influence brand perception.

Colours are considered to be indicators of the personality of a brand. There are 8 main colour schemes that companies use to convey their personality or message: monochrome, green, blue, purple, red, orange, yellow and combination.

What do the colours say?

Monochrome is favoured by companies like Apple, Nike, Mercedes, Adidas and Playboy. It is said to project balance, calmness, neutrality, sophistication and aspiration, especially with high-end products like you find with Apple and Mercedes.

Green is used for health, nature, peacefulness and growth. You’ll see it with brands like Land Rover who market their cars to rural consumers; food businesses like Tropicana and Whole Foods to enhance their healthy living credentials and Starbucks to imply fresh, natural ingredients.

Tech companies like Intel, Dell, IBM, HP, Facebook, Twitter and WordPress use blue to highlight their trustworthiness, dependability, competence and strength. It’s also favoured by conglomerates, popular car manufacturers and financial providers like American Express, JPMorgan, Ford, VW, GE and Walmart because they want to be seen as reliable and consistent.

Food and drink brands like Coca-Cola, KFC and Budweiser, who appeal to under-25s more, employ red as it is considered an exciting, bold, youthful colour. It also plays well with new technology like video-streaming on Netflix or YouTube.

Purple implies creativity, imagination and wisdom – perhaps that is why wizards are so often pictured wearing purple robes – but it also blend elements from blue and red. Cadbury’s is an example of this as it wants to be seen as exciting yet dependable whilst Hallmark wants to be seen as trustworthy and creative.

Companies who want to exude confidence and cheerfulness opt for Orange. Orange works well with children and is favoured by Fanta and Nickelodeon. It is also used as an accent by companies like Harley Davidson and Amazon.

Yellow exhibits optimism, clarity and warmth. McDonald’s, IKEA and Best Buy are all about clarity. You know exactly what you are going to get with them. SubWay is dominated by yellow for clarity but they also accent with green for the healthy food aspect and white for balance.

Combination has to be done really well because it’s easy to confuse your audience – notice how the main brands who use combination are technology/internet giants like Google, Microsoft and eBay.

Get designing

When it comes to matching your brand personality to a colour scheme, remember that there is no evidence to suggest one colour will be more compelling than another. How your logo interacts with the colours is more important that the colours itself. The relationship between colour and brand is steeped in the perception of appropriateness and therefore your logo could be completely transformed with a colour change.

The feeling your logo creates will play a huge role in the perception of your brand and the strength of its persuasion. For that reason you must ensure that first your brand is simple, memorable, adaptable and unique before settling on a colour scheme. Think about your company’s core values, aims, strengths and achievements. This is what your company is made of and should be the factors that shape your logo.

We recently updated our logo to reflect the growth of our business and have had amazing feedback both from our business partners and customers. If you’re looking for assistance in this arena, you can learn more about here design services here. If you’d like to discuss what you’re after in a new logo, you can also contact us and we’d be thrilled to help.

 

 

How to Define Your Customer Profile to Reach Your Demographic

Customer profiling may sound like a politically incorrect term used in airport security but it’s actually an innocent business term for understanding who your customers are.

Imagine a manual for how to most effectively reach your target demographic with details on what they like to buy, how much the spend, how they use your products or services, what will help retain their custom and what matters most to them as consumers. That is your customer profile.

How to create your ideal customer profile

Customer profiles help you understand the things that matter to your customers so you can tailor your offerings and messages to better appeal to them.

Selling products and services without understanding what your ideal customer looks like is akin to doing paint by numbers with your eyes closed. You’ll get paint on the canvass, so in a sense, job done, but it’s not going to look pretty.

Let’s examine how you can easily create a customer profile to determine your target demographic.

There are four simple parts to creating profiles for the customers your business should be targeting: Describe. Connect. Locate. Understand.

Describe

The first thing you need to do is create a description sheet for each of your ideal customers. You need to determine, in a broad sense, the two or three main types of customer you have or want.

Build profiles by sorting customers using these basic criteria:

  • Demographics – age, gender, income, location, etc.
  • Psychographics – personality, values, opinions, attitudes, interests lifestyles etc.

If you work B2B then what you should define includes: Sector, number of employees, revenue and budget, national/global reach, and decision-making process.

Each type of customer will have varying motives for why they chose your company or your product. Not appreciating their individual motives means you cannot address their individual needs. Don’t lump them together.

Connect

Lots of companies use data-mining or just good old-fashioned polling of their customers to gather information. Interview your current customers and ask them what they like about you, what they don’t; what attracted them to you, how they found you originally; what makes them stay, what makes them want to leave; what others do they wish you did, what you do others don’t. Encourage complete honesty.

The information you get back will enable you to create your customer profiles. This information is vital in so many ways. It not only allows you to use that information in the most effective manner for your market strategies but also gives you invaluable feedback on your strengths and weaknesses.

Locate

Knowing where your customers are isn’t as simple as where they live. We covered that kind of location in demographics. What you want to know is where they go — be that physically or digitally. Where do they spend their time? What websites are they visiting? What papers do they like to read? What social media networks are they attracted to? What do they search for on the internet? Where do they go on holiday? What continents do they prefer to visit?

When you understand where your customer types are at any given time you can target them more effectively. You might be spending money on ad spaces in a national gym with loads of members but few of them fit your customer profiles. That’s wasted money but it can sometimes seem like a good idea to go for numbers.

Knowing where your customers are located can help you decide what numbers make more sense. A small online forum where the average user is 60% likely to fit one of your profiles or a national newspaper with 5x the active readers but with an average profile fit of 25%?

Understand

We all have a purchasing process — an unconscious method for making spending decisions. Understanding what drives your customers to make the decisions they do is a key part of building a winning strategy.

You need to understand what their problem or need is. Are they making purchases proactively or reactively? Are they trying to fix a problem or fulfilling a desire? How are they researching solutions to their problem? How are they researching ways to fulfil their need? What benefits are they looking for?

How are they making their final decision? Are they looking at reviews? Comparing features and benefits with competitors? Are they buying on a whim? Do they need to get approval?

When you understand how they make purchases you can tailor your message to speak to them on their level. Your strategy can be designed to match the flow of their purchasing process resulting in higher conversions.

Create personas

One of the best ways to create specific profiles for each distinct group is to name them and give them a picture — this is known as a persona. Visual aids are really helpful in building customer personas and familiarising your team with the motives, desires and concerns of that type of customer. Also, down the line it will enable seamless switching of strategy between customer sets.

An extraneous example would be marketing for a new face cream. A broad target would be “active females in their 30s and 40s”. Customer profiling could allow you to break that down into ‘Molly the stay at home mum’, ‘Charlotte the career woman’ and ‘Adventurous Alice’.

Molly is in her mid-30s; she has two children, one at school, the other is under a year. She lives in the suburbs, drives a hatchback and has a household income of $80000. She doesn’t get much sleep so is concerned her skin is starting to look tired. She wants to try a new face cream but is easily put off by negative reviews on a mum’s blog forum she visits most days.

Charlotte is in her late 20s, has no children and is dating. She drives a convertible, lives in the city, travels for work a lot and earns $50000. She has noticed a few wrinkles around her brow and wants sometimes to help smooth them. She’s always busy so tends to take the advice of sales clerks or chooses products she has seen in her favourite magazine which often has free samples.

Alice leads a very active, outdoors lifestyle. She surfs, cycles, swims, rock-climbs and runs. She’s into extreme sports and spends most of her life in the sun. Alice is worried her lifestyle is drying out her skin and wants a product that is compatible with her activities. She tends to use consumer comparison sites to find the best deals and research the benefits of products.

All three would benefit from using the same product but they have different motives, purchasing processes, incomes, backgrounds and lifestyles. You can’t create a campaign that will reach everyone but by creating customer profiles you can create appropriate and targeted campaigns for your ideal customers.

Acutely targeted marketing strategies, created with these ideal customers in mind, should enable you to better reach the new and existing customers to positively affect sales and grow your business.

When Is a Good Time to Rebrand

The decision to re-brand your business is a big one. A lengthy process that can sometimes cost a bit of coin, and it’s certainly a decision not to be taken lightly. However, if done for the right reasons and at the right time, a rebrand can be a great investment to the immediate and future growth of your business.

Done for the wrong reasons and at the wrong the time it can not only be a costly mistake but a PR disaster.  A recent example, one we can all learn from was by a household name, with a product we all grew up with and loved. Arnott’s rebranded their famous Shapes biscuit ‘updating’ some of their renowned flavours in the process. Australia went into meltdown. It’s possible we’re still in the midst of this meltdown as the benefits of this change have yet to be seen or understood.

Another famous example on the worldwide stage was when Coca-Cola made an attempt to re-brand their product to appeal to younger consumers in 1985. A strong consumer backlash forced the company to bring back the original “Coco-Cola classic” a mere three months later.

Evolving

If your business has evolved since opening its doors, it’s possible that the logo and brand you started with is no longer consistent with your current message or offering. It’s good practice to have a brand that consistently reflects your business’s message. New direction is the primary reason for re-branding.

Moving or Expanding

Moving your business or expanding geographically? If your branding includes geographic information or contains messages or meanings that only apply to one area, re-branding to appeal to the new location will be required.

Updating

Has the market or trends within your industry changed considerably? Has your brand become outdated as a result? Your brand reflects your business and is directly responsible for prospective client’s perception of you. An outdated and dull brand will not appeal to new customers- especially if you’re a company that sells these sort of services. It’s important not to get this confused with you feeling bored with your current branding – which can happen to the best of us.

While it is totally normal for any business owner to want to shake things up, it’s vital to recognise that this isn’t a good enough reason to re-brand, at least not on it’s own. If however you’re considering updating due to an outdated logo or niche a complete change may not be needed. A simple refresh may be enough.

Appealing to New Audiences

If you’re wanting to appeal or attract a new audience, then this is a solid enough reason for rebranding and one of the most popular. If you want to break into a new demographic, updating your brand to reflect their behaviours, likes and interests can position your business favourably. It is important to make a well-informed decision backed by research if considering this. Using an experienced agency to assist with re-branding is beneficial beyond the obvious design reasons. An agency familiar with branding will have years of knowledge and tested and tried experiences behind their expertise.

Merging or Acquiring

Another reason you may be considering a rebrand is if your business is merging with another or you are you acquiring a new one? Updating the brand to reflect the new dynamic not only creates and helps keep the brand consistent with offerings and message but it can also be a great marketing and PR strategy. Just be careful not to alienate existing loyal customers.

It’s not only important to get the timing and the reasons for re-branding right but to also make sure it’s done with longevity in mind. We can’t stress how important it is for a brand to remain consistent, solid and trustworthy in the eyes of consumers – no matter what type of business you’re in.

When considering rebranding you need to consider all elements of your business’s marketing platforms. With website and digital being a strong player in today’s business environment it’s important that a brand presents well in a digital environment as well as on traditional promotional material.

Get Expert Advice

Rebranding can be an expensive exercise and even more expensive if it isn’t done right. It’s a good idea (and a good investment) to get advice from a team who know and understand the branding process.

We recently re-branded our business to reflect the growth of our business and have had glowing feedback from many of our partners and customers. Digital is an important part of a re-brand strategy, contact us today to discuss how we can help.

White Knight becomes WK Digital

 

White Knight Web Design was formed in 2008. The name represented a time in the industry where a customer focused quality web designer was needed, given a reasonable proportion of the web industry operated out of their car boots. We worked hard to not only provide quality websites but help those stranded by other companies who couldn’t finish the job.

We’ve grown together with many of our customers who are still with us from the early days.

White Knight to WK blog post image
 

The digital landscape is constantly evolving. We have added an office in San Francisco, at the heart of the evolution. We want to focus on maintaining our core services, but also ensure that you have access to proven cutting edge revolutions in the digital space.

Rebranding to WK Digital reflects your growth and our growth. We are still here to help, but we’ve grown to provide you with more. WK maintains our heritage and our core ethos; but it also reflects our transformation into a mid tier multinational digital agency.

We still have the same dedicated local staff and we remain resolutely focused on you. This rebrand to WK Digital reflects that we are now in a better position to provide you with digital tools that will enhance your competitive position.

The best CRM for your small business

As more small businesses embrace the Internet and move, it is becoming essential to have the right Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software so you can keep track of customers. Having the right CRM also makes it easier for you to interact with your customers, providing help where needed and give them a good experience as they shop with you.

The CRM you choose, and how right it is for your business, depends to a large extent on the kind of business model you have. While there are many great CRMs to choose from, they don’t all have the same features. For instance, lawyers may need a document and file sharing feature and that would not be important for a retailer who would benefit more from a Live Chat feature.

Another consideration, especially for small businesses, would be budget. The cost of many CRMs is worked out by how many employees will be using them as well as what features they have. You may be surprised to find one – Zoho – is free and is packed with some handy features.

Zoho

The biggest advantage of Zoho is that up to 10 employees can use it for free making it ideal for small start-ups with a tight budget. Crucially, it also has a free mobile version. It is easy to use even for those with no previous experience and if you get stuck there is a help button and live chat.

Features include: client interaction tracking, files sharing (not real-time), web forms, purchasing reports and Google docs integration.

Like all freemium products many of the best features – like creating and sending invoices, data backups, multiple currencies, lead capture from social media, marketing campaigns, integration with Google AdWords, customer support, inventory management, analytics and greater security – are saved for paid versions. You can purchase software that will integrate seamlessly with Zoho to perform these tasks though.

SugarCRM

This is a trustworthy CRMs used by many businesses worldwide. A cloud-based service, its better features include: – sales force automation and forecasting, real-time sharing, email integration, mobile app, large storage plans, up to 24/7 support and support for MySQL, Oracle and SQL Server. The user interface, while uncluttered and easy to use, is considered a little too simple and overly-focused on commerce.

Workbooks.com

In spite of the downside of a 25 users limit, this CRM is has a powerful suite of sales and marketing tools that can support sales teams around the world. Features include real-time sharing and easy configuration and customisation. Some users recommend taking a staged approach to integration to avoid headache.

Maximizer

A popular CRM for over 20 years, Maximizer can automatically generate email campaign based on company input. The design, similar to several Microsoft Office applications, makes it very easy to use. With many features, it is available in the cloud or on the premises. Reviews suggest the cloud version is improving but still has many bugs.

MailChimp

Whilst not technically a CRM – and in fact MailChimp is mostly used as an integrated add-on to manage email marketing campaigns – many small businesses are using it as a form of Customer Relationship Management tool. If all you need is a simple way to bulk contact your customers and create email campaigns then MailChimp could be for you but be aware that you won’t be able to benefit from all the clever analytics, lead tracking and reports you get with a true CRM system.

Apptivo

Another affordable CRM, Apptivo offers customisable solutions and has 24-hour support. Considered one of the most flexible and affordable solutions it has many features for just $10 per month per user. This makes it ideal for small businesses or sole traders.

Batchbook

Its cheap cost makes it ideal for the tiny business or entrepreneur that only needs to monitor social media and streamline customer communications. It’s good at what little it does, but if you want automated features to take care of invoices or anything else, you won’t get it from this CRM without third party add-ons.

Salesforce

They say you get what you pay for and Salesforce CRM comes with a price worthy of its consideration as one of the best, if not the best, CRMs on the market. Salesforce is not only intuitive, uncluttered and easy to use; it also has a great many features that will help you reach your business goals quickly and efficiently. As a cloud-based system, Salesforce keeps your information from accidental deletion and boasts robust security to fend off unauthorised access.

Contact information from Outlook or Excel can be imported into this CRM and you can also dial clients, send out automatic mass or single emails or send only to specific groups. It also boasts one of the largest third-party marketplaces for add-ons and apps with seamless integration – and it has its own social networking platform.

One downside is that when it is necessary to add a new contact, a new company account with a designated account number must first be created. Then the new customer can be added to it. Some people find this extra step a little frustrating, especially when they are in a hurry. However, managers will find this software invaluable for keeping a check on customer/employee interaction to make sure that the customer gets what they need, as well as for many other jobs. Performance evaluations can easily be carried out by managers.

Having the right CRM for your business will ensure that things run much more smoothly and efficiently but don’t get wooed by functions you won’t use. Select a CRM based on what you need right now. It might cost you a little more in the long-run should you need to migrate to a different platform but it’s better than getting stuck with something you feel obligated to use because you paid a lot of money for features you never needed.

Why Your Business Needs to Focus on Google Reviews

While Google+ has decided to say adios to their inbuilt review system, the standard ‘Google Reviews’ are here to stay. Most business owners can identify the importance of this review system but often fail in their attempts to get customers to leave reviews. In this post we will discuss what Google Reviews are for those of you who haven’t been acquainted yet, why they are so vital for your business and most importantly how you can get your customers to give you the glowing review you deserve.

What are Google Reviews?

Google Reviews is the app Google implemented into the popular search engine for customers to review a business or place. When someone Google searches your business name, the first thing they may notice is how many stars you have. They are eye-catching and give a pretty good indication whether your business is one they want to deal with. The reviews present the reader the only information they need before committing to continue to your website. See for yourself with this local example:

montville mountain inn Google Search

Why They Are Important

It doesn’t matter if you have hundreds of reviews on Facebook or other review sites in your industry, if you don’t have Google reviews you have no way to impress your potential customers this visibly. It’s almost like you don’t have any reviews at all if they aren’t on Google, which is arguably the most likely way for these prospects to find you. Your competitors also will have it one up on you in terms of outranking you, regardless of whether their reviews are favourable.

How To Give A Review

You need to understand how to give a review before you start asking customers for them just in case they ask you how. Luckily, it’s really easy to leave a review for a business. You just need to be logged into your Google account (Gmail, Google+ or Youtube). See below some handy screenshots:

1. Search for a business

2. On the card that appears below the search box, click ‘Write a review’.

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3. In the window that appears, click the stars to score the place. If you want, you can also write a review (try and keep the review constructive).

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4. Hit ‘Post’.

5. That’s it!

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How to ask your Customers for a Google Review

So now you understand what they are why they are important, how on earth do you get them? It’s pretty simple and sometimes you can overthink this step. The easiest way to get a Google Review is to simply ask for one. People are busy, so although they may have had an amazing experience with your business they may forget to give you praise. With this being said customers who have had a negative experience are more likely to leave a review, so it is really important you chase the feedback from the good interactions.

How you ask for customer feedback really depends on your industry but here are few straightforward ways to reach out:

  • Ask in person at the conclusion of your service.
  • Send a follow up email to your customer asking for their help. You can make it really easy for them if you include a couple of print screens.
  • Post a social media update requesting help. This is less personal, but you can reach more people this way.
  • Ask family and friends to give you a hand to establish your business reviews.

 

Creative Incentives for Your Customers

You’d be surprised at how many people will just be happy to help you, especially if they’ve had a positive experience with your business. If you are after a little more motivation for your customers though, a little incentive never hurt anyone. Again, it does depend on what your business does, but here a few suggestions to get your brain juices flowing:

  • Your humble gratitude. This is by far the cheapest option, being authentic is powerful.
  • Discount their next purchase (either a % off or a $ off gift voucher).
  • Monthly draws for a prize for one lucky ‘Google Reviewer’.
  • A thank-you gift. It doesn’t have to be physical, think about digital gifts like desktop wallpapers, downloadable guides or e-books and other types of useful downloadables relevant to your business offering.
  • Create a special ‘Club’ that receive access to specials and news before the general public.

 

There are lots of ways to approach your customers and get them to leave you a precious Google Review. Do try to keep it relevant to your business and keep it low key and not come across too ‘salesy’. With all types of reviews it is important to keep your eye on them and try to respond to them. Even the negative reviews can be turned around if you reach out and try to remedy the situation. Google is a powerhouse for your business so you need to utilise their tools if you want your business to have maximum exposure to your prospective customers.

A letter to my daughter on International Women’s Day

Why do we celebrate this day anyway? I can hear you ask that and “haven’t we come far enough?”

Well I’d like you to know that yes, in 2016, we have come a long way.
We can vote, we can play sports, we can be CEOs, we can start and successfully
run our own businesses.

My industry, information technology, is a male-dominated industry, so right away women already stand out. So we
don’t have to fight to get noticed but we’ve always have to have a clear focus on getting noticed for things that impact us specifically.

#WomenInIT

Through my career in IT I have evolved an interest in the inner workings of computers
and software into fixing real world problems for lots of people in lots of industries.
In this way, getting to work in many different environments provides the ultimate diversity and
variety that I know most people want. This is what I love about IT, but I also know it’s not a career choice
considered by enough women.

#PledgeforParity

I also know that across all industries the gap in pay between men and women for the exact same jobs is real and its
too big. If I stand by and don’t do anything to see that change then I’m letting you and your friends down now, for later.

#GirlstotheFront

What I’ve also learned talking to other women, as professionals and as mothers, is that we can’t forget to put
ourselves first when it matters, even if we need to be loud about it sometimes.

So to me, today is important because it’s the day we get together as a group, 50% of the world’s population, and celebrate
our successes and how far we’ve come. And with a loud voice today I tell people I support:

– Setting goals and encouraging more women into information technology careers
– Sharing gender pay data across all industries so we can talk about real solutions for reducing the gap
– Women putting themselves first, professionally and as family members, because we always bring the rest of
the team up with us!

How to Start Building Your Business Empire Today

Back to the grindstone, back to the same old maybe not going anywhere job, feeling closed in by a company that is anything but merit-based? Time to run your own show?

Naawwww…yeah? If you’ve even spent an hour investigating running your own company then you’ve probably heard the black and white, the bad and the good, but what about the grey,  and the not so written about?

After 8 years in the digital space maybe our experience can help give you a picture of how you can start your own business and build it into something that replaces and then expands on the money bring in now.

 

Changing Financial Focus

 

Realistically starting a business means changing the focus of your financial investment strategy. You need to be prepared to budget for what you want to do, putting estimates around the costs you think you’ll need to outlay. You’ll also need to be realistic about other investments – thinking of buying a house? That may need to wait.

 

Supporters and Advisors

 

You need to run your ideas by people you respect and by people that know about the industry you’re about to jump into (these could be the same people). They’ll help you flesh out what you want to do and how you can get potential customers to respond positively to your ideas.

 

You need to talk to your significant other and make sure they support what you’re doing and can give you some encouragement on tough days when things aren’t going your way. And don’t forget about your mum or dad – at least one or both think you hung the moon regardless!

 

So how do you start making money?

 

Get a Shopfront

 

You need a marketplace/showroom/shopfront where people can come and find you. Even better if that place is open 24/7. eCommerce might not be for everyone but in our experience using a website to complete some or all of a transaction with your customers will mean they save time and so do you – this of course is almost as good as the thing you are selling.

 

Build a network

 

Maybe you already have one but they don’t know what you’re up to? Every week you need to be pursuing opportunities large and small to get noticed for what you eventually want to do full time.

 

If you’re selling to other businesses then LinkedIn is a great way to professionally advertise what you do and establish your credibility. If you’re selling to consumers then you need to consider Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest or even Snapchat, it all depends on who your target market is.

 

Just as valuable as online is good old face to face networking. It’s so much easier to build credibility and get people’s attention when they’ve met you face to face. Investigate industry bodies and groups that potential clients belong to and make sure you attend industry events – this is always money incredibly well spent.

 

Know your Sales Process

 

Statistics continually tell us it takes an average of 7 interactions with a client to bring them onboard. That means you need to build a marketing plan around how you will reach them multiple times without having to invent 7 different types of marketing.

 

You should also have a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool that you can store current and future customer details in.

 

A CRM will allow you to track every time you spoke with a customer, what messages and marketing they received and where they are in the sales pipeline – cool, warm or hot lead?Preferably its something you log into online so that you can access it anywhere, anytime.

 

Back in 2008 we put as many of our tools of trade online as we could. That was surprisingly more challenging then you would have thought but it’s been the bedrock of scaling our business for success.

 

Having a shopfront, building a network and knowing your sales process will lead to the ever important dollars you are seeking. Even more than that it will give you control over your current and future destiny and that should continually lead to informed business decision making.

 

Even if you have another gig, it is possible to starting empire building right now. Good luck!