This is a touchy topic for me, and I want to be transparent about that right out of the gate. I’m one of those people that love checklists, task lists, agendas, timelines, and even time-boxing. But when I am starring at multiple project management apps, multiple lists, and multiple deliverables, it can be debilitating.
Setting realistic yet challenging goals is key to achieving success as a small business owner. By setting goals that are attainable, you can stay motivated and focused, but by making sure they are also challenging, you can push yourself to grow and improve.
Have You Heard About the SMART Framework?
A good way to set goals is by using the this structure of Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound. I won’t get into each of them too much but the shortcut of all of those is to consider each part of that framework when you are creating or defining out your goals. If they don’t have each of these elements then chances are you won’t actually achieve completion. Remember, the “goal” of this is to be in or better align with your overall business objectives.
Keep your focus on the most important thing at the start of your day, which is to take action and make progress towards your goals, no matter how small. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve felt stuck or overwhelmed with so many things I want to get done or accomplish, but then shifting to low hanging fruit, or things that will give me a sense of completion really help boost motivation to go and tackle bigger things. We’ve all heard of “Eat That Frog” and sometimes doing that first makes the rest of what you need to do seem like easy downhill coasting. Every step you take, no matter how small, is a step in the right direction. And don’t forget to celebrate your successes along the way!
One last idea, put your goals out there in public. Peer motivation can also be a great motivator. Again follow the S.M.A.R.T. framework, and see how much more accountable you will feel and encouraged to digging into your goals and making consistent progress each day.
Download a free Goal Slide Deck Template: http://dthero.co/goalslidedeck
It’s important to have a an accepted end point that you and your team share, and then you can build the roadmap to how to achieve it. Having clear and defined goals help to ensure the success of your efforts with the redesign. It also will bring into scope what content, functions, specific designs, and other elements that will be required and allow you to break each goal down into silos with milestones and tasks.
Create Attractive Content For Your Audience
The best content is content made for specific individuals. The idea of generalized media with a spaghetti on the wall approach is meaningless and a waste of time (and money). So instead, do some research on what your custom avatar is challenged with and how your MVP is going to address their issue(s). You’ll want to lead with that on your home page, then provide proof of concepts, examples, case studies, and testimonials. If you have some big partnerships or known influencers, leverage their contributions and feedback as well. All of these can greatly help change a potential client/customer from kicking tires to frantically looking for a BUY NOW button.
Design For Mobile Use
The data shows that more websites are viewed on a mobile device over desktops. Yes widescreen monitors are nice and I’m sure your brand graphics could look amazing on them. But going back to the goals, what is the main function your online visitors are expected to want to do? Are they mainly going to pull up your website to see graphics and ponies scroll across the screen in a parallax or slider? Is that going to make them more inclined to use your call to actions or sign ups? If so and you can make all that work on a mobile device using average network speeds, go for it all. Otherwise it may be worth to disable some elements that are useful on the desktop but not necessary for a mobile experience so that your content loads even faster and satisfies the ever dwindling patience of today’s society.
Make The Navigation Flow Easy
A hamburger menu is those three lines at the top corner of the website – on mobile – that help visitors click to show a full menu of pages and subpages to navigate or jump to. If your site doesn’t have this as a feature, you’ll certainly want to incorporate it. Being responsive and Google Mobile Friends is also key for SEO purposes and for Accessibility. Those are the technical, but let’s also take a second to consider how your visitors “should” be navigating from page to page like as if they were reading a book. Will you have landing pages optimized with content that you’ll be using ads and retargeting so that when visitors do “click” and get to your landing page(s), they’re offered a seemless experience and then can easily tell what their next steps should be? Are large buttons and large arrows necessary? Or do images alongside content helping the eye navigate along a page clear interaction points shown. PRO TIP: On your current website, install a Heat Map so that you can see how and what people are using their mouse and spending time on for each page on your website.
Create Multiple Landing Page With Specific Strategies
I’ve hinted about landing pages above, but let’s talk a bit more about it here. Landing pages serve singular purposes, and that’s to provide information on a product or service with a clear and sometimes repeated offering or call to action. The normal top or side page navigation menus are not aways displayed because we’re hoping to keep the visitor focused on just what they see on the page. There may be an introductory video, infogrpaphic, product images, before and after photos, you name it. All of these along with supporting text that better describes a need or challenge that the visitor can have solved by taking another step. Maybe that’s to sign up for a newsletter, purchase a product, subscribe to a newsletter or mailing list. There’s no limit on the amount of content needed on each of your landing pages or a limit on how many landing pages you can or should create. Having multiple can help with A/B testing, segmenting your audience, providing variations for your digital marketing ad traffic and audience and more. Consider your landing page almost like a deal closer that can speak to anyone in your target audience, but in a specific way that they’ll understand individually and appreciate.
I hope that you found these points useful and relevant if you’re going through or planning a redesign with your company website. Each business is different and there are many other things to consider. If you’d like help with a strategy for your own redesign be sure to contact us.
I’m not sure about you, but I’ve been impatiently waiting for a new social media offering that isn’t Facebook. While I know that millions of people are active on all of the arms and legs of this giant, I’ve had fatigue for a couple of years now. But we can get into that another time. Clubhouse is a breathe of fresh air.
Audio Only & Exclusivity
One of the biggest and more unique features is that it is audio only. Where video is still a powerhouse, audio has been mainly used for podcasts. Though that sector is still booming, live audio is relatively new. So Clubhouse is an invite only social app and this is different when compared to most where anyone can get on (including bots). With this, invites are tracked by who invited you. And your invites are limited at first but grow with your engagement and prolonged use. This makes for a more exclusive feeling when you launch the app and it furthers that by curating rooms in your feed based on who you follow and interact with most. It helps to make it easier and quicker to jump right into a room and join a conversation.
Conversations & Stages
Joining a room is easy, but the key is to get up on stage. Not all rooms allow for everyone to be brought up on stage. So again, some exclusivity being exercised again. This is a good thing because it allows for room moderators to ensure whomever is going to be on stage is someone who will add value to the conversation. If you happen to notice people’s microphone icon go on and off repeatedly, that means they’re applauding what the speaker is saying.
Networking & Growth Opportunities
This is probably the biggest advantage to early adopters of this platform. As it is very organic right now, most of the interactions you’ll have will land you follows. It’s advantageous for your to follow others as well because you’ll get notifications of rooms that they enter as well as rooms they create. If they’re active with getting up on stages, chances are they’ll also get you on stage too. And being up there providing value to the crowd is where you always want to be when you put time into this app in my opinion. Very much like any other public opportunity, you’ll want to position yourself as an SME (Subject Matter Expert), that others will quickly come to regard you as such and seek you for more insight.
Another key element here is to create your own rooms, invite others to join you, and do this on a consistent basis. I’ve seen people do daily ones on open ended topics like a Lunch & Learn. Those are great because you’re not locked into a singular topic or stressed to think of a new topic for each day/room session. I’ve included screenshots on how to create and schedule a room. I found it hard at first to figure out so I figured I’d share.
Recently I was featured on a webinar with the African American Chamber of Commerce of Central Florida where I presented on How To Keep Your Business Relevant During Covid-19. We’ve been telling our clients during strategy consultations what they’ll need to be doing to keep their brand recognition alive during this time of quarantining and social distancing. Not all businesses are open, and some are but operating with limited products and services. Meanwhile others are taking steps to keep their marketing efforts in tact to be ready for when the marketplaces open back up.
In this webinar I give a bunch of tips, strategy, and resources that you can use right now to create engaging content for your audience and keep relevant during this time.
Special thank you to the AACCCFL for having me as a guest presenter. They’re really doing a great job with featuring various local business professionals as well as elected officials each week answering questions and providing resources for the community here in Orlando and beyond. Be sure to visit their website to see upcoming webinars and resources.
If you have a business, you need to have performed a SWOT Analysis. SWOT stands for:
In each of those parts you’ll want to identify as much as you can and try your best to document or illustrate areas for awareness and/or improvement. This is a practice that should probably be done once or twice a year, but have your findings reviewed by leadership and staff on a regular basis. If you’ve never performed this before, download this FREE template that will help you document each part of this analysis. If you have any questions please feel free to contact us!
Finding your target customers can sometimes be hard to do as a business owner. You’ll find yourself asking a bunch of questions that may sound simple, but the answers could be really cloudy. Especially in the days of online marketing, social media, and digital networking.
This slide deck will help if you’re just starting a new business or even if you’ve been in business for some time but are looking for ways to find and attract new customers for the products and services you offer.