A copy of my presentation to the Exclusive Wedding Club on 25.1.17.
Earlier this week I had the honour of addressing a number of wedding professionals and suppliers at the Exclusive Wedding Club. This meets on the final Tuesday of the month in the Business Development Centre at Conleach Road in Speke, Liverpool. I was delivering a brief workshop on making the most of the web in your business. My aims for the workshop were to provide attendees with a range of free tools and some useful information and links that they could take away. Hopefully this would then empower them to make the most of the web in their business.
This has been a common theme amongst presentations and workshops that I have done over the last few years. As a digital business specialist and a freelancer, I am passionate about small businesses and entrepreneurs. I am even more passionate about helping these businesses succeed and utilising the advantages that the big companies take for granted.
Anyway enough of my ethics, let me talk you through the presentation as there may be something of value that you can take away with you.
Slide 1 – Introduction
Slide 2 – Pre-amble
In my years of experience, I have unfortunately witnessed some very dodgy practices from website companies. Mostly this is under the guise of “value-based pricing.” If you’re not sure what value-based pricing is, it basically means you can sell the same product to two different businesses. The difference is the value to them. For example if I I normally sell gas hob whistling kettles at £2.99 I raise the price of these kettles to all customers who have no electricity and can only use gas. Yet it is still the same kettle! It costs me the same to produce!
Some of you will disagree with me and say that is just business, but I do not use value based pricing in my business. Maybe that is why bootstrapping is so important to me. I keep my costs down and my customers get the benefit.
Slide 3 Managing Your Business and Tools
This is a list of free tools that I use daily. I have written two other blog posts related to this topic, so I will merely mention them here as they are covered in some depth in my other two posts. So go take a look at my “free tools to help you manage your work life balance post” and of course my “free tools for small business” posts.
Slide 4 – Lead Generation
It does not matter what business you are in, leads are the life-blood of any business. Your website is your place on the web where your potential customers can find you and check you out. I have five personal favourite tactics for on-line lead generation. In a nutshell, they are;
- SEO or Search Engine Optimisation keywords are everything. They should be the basis of your whole digital strategy, It is massively important that you get this right. My favourite tools for getting this right are Googles own Keyword Planner and Seorch website analyser. The second is a risky strategy, but if you cannot work Googles Keyword tool, then you could always consider using Seorch to check out what your competitors keywords are. (naughty, naughty, very naughty in the words of a 90’s dance hit)
- Content Marketing – No 1 Know your audience and what they need. No 2 Blog, help them, tell them what you are good at but more importantly what they need to know. No 3 Share, Get your word out on social media. Many people say they don’t know what to blog about or even what to share. Here is a monster list from convince and convert that gives you quite literally 100 ideas.
- Facebook Ads – Facebook wants your money. period. They do not mind if you waste your advertising spend with them. Be guided by Facebook by all means but first and foremost know what it is you want your ad to achieve. Do you want more likes? Do you want someone to buy or book something with you?The most important piece of advice create a custom landing page. Let your customer know they have landed in the right place. Please do not point the ad to the home page, where the browser is then overwhelmed with all of your other services.
- Google Adwords – The advice above applies here too. The only things I would add are do not use Google recommended settings. Change the most basic settings to match your needs. The key takeaways are, keep it simple and use the search network only in the beginning. Check that you are targeting the right location for your business and click the optimise for conversions button. A great blog post was written by Search engine land and I highly recommend giving it a read, if you have ever considered using AdWords.
- Email Marketing – Email is a very powerful tool if used correctly. If you can sell to your active subscribers, the people who open your emails. Not only have they heard of you but they liked you already. WoW. An Epic Email marketing post will be coming up later this month, so please look out for it.
Slide 5 – Browsers into Buyers – The Squint Test
The squint test basically means if you can squint (or get drunk) and see your call to action on your website, you have a better chance of converting browsers into paying customers.
Slide 6 – Browsers into Buyers Top 6 tips
- Navigation – make your pages clear and easy to find. Nobody should have to click more than 3 times to find something.
- Never lose the pages you have, just update them and improve them. The search engines have probably already crawled them. Please do not lose them.
- One call to action. What should people do? Join your mailing list, email you, call you, use your form. If you give people too many choices they will not take any. Keep it simple and ask them to do just one thing.
- Keep your contact form simple. Enough said.
- Shrink your images as it will help your page load more quickly. Most phones take high-resolution photos of anything up to 2000 pixels wide. Unless you want to make wallpaper with your image you do not need it to be that big. Make your image smaller before you put it on your web page.
- Trust trust trust. Make your reviews, awards, qualifications, professional memberships whatever it is stand out on your page. People will feel better about working with you if they can see approval from others.
Slide 7 – Other resources
Your local library is a great source of useful information for small business. Please do not forget about it.
My newsletter is also a great resource, so why not sign up
Lastly, the My Donut Website is a fantastic resource for free templates and other things you may need in your business. Highly recommended.
I hope you found my article useful. If you did please consider hitting one of the sharing buttons underneath as you never know who else may find this useful.
Thanks and if you have any questions do not hesitate to get in touch.