Don’t Forget to Change Your Oil! Website Maintenance Recommendations

Keep your site up to date.

Website maintenance recommendations are coming your way. But first, let’s remember the work it took you to get there and why you need to maintain your website in the first place.

I know, getting a website created and set up is a big deal…from figuring out your niche and your offerings, getting your message just right, doing a fancy photoshoot, establishing your new visual identity to display all over your website. It’s a lot of work, but it’s really an exciting time! And it’s even more exciting when it’s time to open the doors and let the world know you are here!

I don’t want to be a spoilsport, but I do want to keep it real. I don’t have babies, but I imagine it being sort of similar (except the website reveal is most likely a lot less painful)! You plan, prep and get set up for the special day. Baby arrives and there’s lots of joy and excitement, but then…the real work starts. It’s sort of the same with creating your business and launching your website. It’s super exciting, but then…the real work starts. (Not a good metaphor? Hit reply and let me know).

Now it’s time to “nurture” that business so that it grows and prospers.

You need to make sure the website is working for you, so that people are actually coming to your site. You do this through networking, blogging, podcasting, socialmediaing (that might not be a word, but it is now), YouTubing, speaking, advertising, stapling posters to the community board, etc. When you start growing your business you will also inevitably want to update your site as your business goes through different changes. i.e. changing your offers, adding services, adding pages and so on. All of this can be fun, if you set it up that way. What might be a little less fun is making sure your site is up to date and secure so you can keep serving folks through your site.

Think of it this way…

You get oil changes every 5,000 miles,

You clean your teeth every 6 month or so,

You visit the doctor annually to make sure you are healthy,

Your smartphone has a bunch of apps that need to be updated so they run smoothly.

 

Similarly, this maintenance is needed for your website. It needs to be up to date to run smoothly. It needs be as secure as possible. And, it needs to be backed up just in case something does happen.

If your site is on WordPress, here is a “little less fun” list I would recommend you take a look at, or have a professional take a look at for you:

  • Back up your site
  • Research Theme vs WP versions for compatibility so it’s safe to update
  • Backup WordPress, theme, custom CSS rules and other possible items
  • Update your copyright if it’s passed another year
  • Update plugins (in correct order)
  • Clean out any unused plugins
  • Check that forms and links work

 

Lastly, make sure your site handled all the updates without losing any information or displaying in a funky way.

It’s pertinent to stay on top of this, because you have put in a lot of work to get here, and I know you don’t want to have to deal with your site being down. It’s not only time consuming but could be very costly.  If you don’t stay on top of updates you are opening the doors to unwanted guests, like hackers and malware. And before you say it, I know your site doesn’t have anything valuable on it (like credit card information) and it’s just a small informational site, but the sad truth is…it doesn’t matter anymore. For some odd reason that I don’t know or understand, people like to go in and break things anyway.

To end this post on a good note, make sure to stay on top of your oil change, teeth cleaning, smartphone updates and website check-ups, and I promise you that life will run a little bit smoother (at least in those areas)!

Basic SEO Marketing to Get You Going

If you ask me, it’s very important how a website looks!

But looks aren’t everything. 

As with all design elements, it needs to have both form and function.

One aspect of the function [yes, there are multiple] of a website is Search Engine Optimization [SEO]. As the name indicates, SEO helps with visibility of websites on search engines.  If you want a more detailed explanation have a read here.

As you most likely know, well-done SEO will help you get to the top of the search engines, such as Google, for free. You might also know that you can pay for ad space and your site will be put at the top or on the right side of the page.

But did you know that there are, on average, 3.8 million searches per minute on Google!?  That’s a lot of searching going on in the world. If your business got searched, let’s say, .01% out of all those searches, I think your business would be doing pretty well! 😉

 

With that said, I thought I would give some basic guidance on how search engines rank sites.

If you have…

  • high-quality, relevant information for a specific topic that uses the most optimal, searchable keywords…
  • other websites linking to your website… [Keep in mind, it’s important who you are linked to. You will up your game if you are linked to other trusted sites that get frequent traffic vs a site that rarely gets views.]
  • a lot of people clicking on your site…
  • a fast-loading site…
  • unique content… [I know, it’s convenient to get fed content from other resources, but when it’s original, it’s much more valuable for the search engine optimization.]
  • your brand or domain name mentioned frequently in other places…
  • high social metrics… [Facebook shares, LinkedIn mentions, Tweets, etc.]

 

…then search engines will love you and it’s more likely your site will populate at the top of the list when someone does a search relevant to what you offer.

What do you optimize for?

Before you take steps to get higher rankings, you first need to figure out who you are optimizing for [your audience] and what your audience is searching for [frequent keywords used]. That takes a little “brand” soul searching, but there are plenty of tools like Google’s own keyword tool that can help you figure out what that is.

You will then look at search volume, relevance, and competition to find which keywords or phrases will be the most useful for you. 

How to optimize?

When you have your list of keywords or phrases, it’s time to optimize your site. There are a plethora of ways you can do that!  Below are some of the top ones. But keep in mind, it’s constantly changing. [They just can’t make it easy for us can they.]

  • Title of your website
  • Meta description
  • Alt tags
  • URL name
  • Target keywords on your pages: Placing them higher up on the page is better.
    For example, a keyword in a title is more useful than if it’s buried within the body of your copy. But, either way, get those keywords placed on your page!
  • Built to share: if you give your audience an easy way to share your articles, your social metrics go up.
  • Engagement: whether on your site or on social media, engaging your audience is good.
  • User Experience: such as speed; a clean, visually appealing site; and simple navigation.
  • Local SEO: within a smaller market vs a larger market, broad terms (such as shoes) can produce effective results.
  • Hyperlinked text: when you link to another location, make sure to include keywords.
  • Content creation and promotion: remember, original content is best!
  • Mobile friendliness
  • Redirects: I do not recommend moving or changing your URL, but if necessary, make sure it’s done properly. Broken links can impact you poorly.
  • Duplicating content: this is never good. It dilutes link equity between pages (yes confusing, but in general, search engines will penalize you for duplicating sections of content.
  • Submit your xml sitemap: Share your sitemap with search engines so that spiders crawl your site and pick up your information more quickly.
  • Organic SEO: these organic optimization efforts are valued higher than paid advertising.
  • SSL certificate: this used to be just for eCommerce. Not anymore. All sites need to have it and it’s valued high for Google.
  • Back links: reach out to people who might be interested in linking to your articles.
  • SEO plugins: for example, Yoast SEO is free and an excellent tool.

This is a long list and there are even more ways to optimize, but hopefully this will give you a place to start. I know we all have limited time, but if you start with chipping away on this list, I’m most certain you will start seeing your site get higher up in the ranks. 

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out, and if this seems just straight up overwhelming, we can of course help do it for you.

Building a Personal Brand

Before jumping into how to build a personal brand, let’s establish what it really is.

Your personal brand is basically you being the face of your company with your values and your ways of doing things. It’s how you show up, and how you make people feel.

I was recently watching a video, where Marie Forleo was interviewing Seth Godin, one of my favorite marketers.  Seth breaks everything down to the basics and states the facts just how they are, raw and real. There is no fluff with him. In this specific episode, they talk about the practice of doing your work and how essential consistency is. (“The Practice” is also the name of his new book. I haven’t read it yet, but it’s probably as brilliant as all of his other work.)

Doing anything regularly is a big part of building a personal brand.

Next they talked about authenticity, which most likely is something that pops in your mind when you think about a personal brand…which make sense, but Mr. Godin puts a different perspective on this idea. He says that the only time you are authentic is when you are a toddler, because you don’t have any executive functions, but beyond that you are busy calculating what you would do as a civilized productive contributor to society.

Within this idea are the golden nuggets of what you should deliver to your audience.

an authentic experience that they can consume. Hallelujah.

So, although authenticity might come to mind when talking about personal brand, it’s really a calculated experience on how you want to show up. It’s about learning along the way how you want to be and how you don’t want to be. When you do that enough times, without being influenced by or desiring to impress, but instead doing what you believe is true, that’s when you are establishing your personal brand.

How do you make it happen? Well, that is simple, but not that easy.

You do uncomfortable things, until you do them well. Then you rinse and repeat.

You do things and then take a step back to evaluate if that is how you would do it again.

It’s about looking inwards and then really listening to your truth. It’s a constant growth process, but as time goes by you start gaining clarity on what feels right and how you’d like to show up.

Then, you incorporate those values and ways into your business and “all of a sudden” you have built a personal brand. The neat thing that comes with all that work is that you are building a business that also stands out, because you are doing it your way.

I hope this gives you more clarity on what a personal brand is and how to create one.

How to Get More Done

I might be a bit of a nerd when it comes to getting stuff done.

But I just really like checking things off and moving on to the next thing! [Except for the things I love to procrastinate, of course.]

Any other to-do list addicts out there?!

Getting stuff done is not only about prioritizing, it’s also about optimizing the best time to do different things, because not everyone wants to get up and workout at 5am, for example.

I hear a lot of people say things like “you should get up in the morning and do your stuff”, which is great for people like me whose work is most effective in the morning, but there are just as many night owls out there who get their stuff done in the middle of the night. Crazies 😉

We all have 24hrs in a day… Do you prioritize, optimize, and get stuff done in that time?

Below are some of the things I do to get more done. Check them out, and if you have some tricks up your sleeve that I didn’t mention, let me know! I’m always up for optimizing. 😀

01. time blocking

This is probably one of my favorite things, because after 3pm, I just don’t function well enough to do creative work. So that is what gets done for me first thing in the day when my brain is firing on full blast.

02. Notifications

This is probably the biggest life saver… turn off ALL of your notifications when you are trying to get stuff done.  If you have a team, and don’t feel like you want to hold them up, it might be hard not to be available, but if you have timed blocked and they know about it, then things can be planned around it. Also, put your phone on airplane mode. I never have my email push notifications on. I only get them when I choose to go look at them, and then I turn on do not disturb on my computer too.

03. Schedule time off

Not only do you need to schedule time to get work done, you have to schedule time off as well. If you happen to be like me and really like your work, it could be hard to turn it off sometimes, so make sure to schedule your workouts, time for family/friends, and hobbies in order to rejuvenate.

04. delegate

Do you have somebody who helps you? If not, stop what you are doing and get somebody to help you, even if it’s just for a few hours a week. It can be with whatever it is that you are not the best at. It can be anything from accounting, client relations, marketing, cleaning, or even cooking!

05. templates

Having templates for things you do often is a time and life saver. For example, I have templates for my client work, emails I send, and even for articles like the one you’re reading right now. I love templates because they save me and my team time, which in turn saves money, and that’s what I call a win-win!

06. Multitask

No, I’m not saying to work on multiple work projects at once, but you can however, schedule calls when you are commuting (which happened more often pre-covid for most of us), listen to books/podcasts while working out, or even invite a friend to an activity to be able to catch up while doing something fun at the same time.

07. plan out your travel around town

Just me? I like to plan out my stops, so they go in a nice loop and not back and forth all over town. Lots of time is saved that way. 

I hope these suggestions inspire you to get more done! Oh, and don’t forget to let me know if you have any other ideas on how to optimize your day.

How to Write Your Service Page

A website is sort of like a goldmine for the right person.

Well, at least it should be!

It should help your audience learn about you, your team, your work, how you do your work, your exceptional knowledge, how you eliminate their sleepless nights and possibly how much that would cost [we will get to this one later], perhaps where you stand on your values and beliefs, etc.

 

To make it all digestible, your content should be organized into clear and obvious sections on your site, so that your potential client can easily find what they are looking for. Kind of like, why kitchen utensils are almost always found in a top drawer in the kitchen.

 

Today I will be talking about the lovely service page, because honestly it’s the one page where we often spend most of our time when building sites – not because it’s necessarily the most important page, but because a lot of content needs to go into this section without it feeling cluttered and overwhelming.

Here are five things your service page should include:

01. First

It should be clear in the menu bar where your potential client can find what you offer. Service(s) is an excellent, straightforward name. I don’t recommend getting clever in this area unless the word choice is very clear. If you confuse, you lose.

02. Second

Second, at the top of the Service page, I typically start with a strong statement of how you can help your potential client and then follow that with a call to action (CTA). CTA suggestions include signup for a seminar or workshop; schedule a call; fill out a form; take a quiz; etc. Whichever CTA you use all depends on how accessible your company wants to be or how you want to sell your services.

03. Third

Third, explain what your offerings include, all of it, in a clear and succinct manner. This one is not easy, I know, but you want to let the potential client know how you can help, what they can expect from you, what you expect from them, how long it will take and possibly how much it will cost. The more direct you are on this, the more clarity you’ll give the potential client and at the same time build authority and trust. Win-Win.

04. Fourth

Fourth, having previous clients back you up on the great work you do with videos or written testimonials is glorious. Keep in mind, some industries have to follow compliance rules so testimonials may not be allowed.

05. Fifth

Fifth, pricing is an interesting topic. Should you have it on there or not? I would say, it depends!

  • If you offer a specific set of services that don’t vary, put your price on there. It will eliminate questions, filter out potential clients, who really are not potential clients, as well as further indicate what your brand experience or value should be.
  • If your offerings vary based on what the client needs, do not include pricing on your site, but instead talk to them first.
  • If you have time to talk to a potential client, don’t put pricing on your site. A conversation gives you the opportunity to build rapport and a connection. Even if they are not a great fit now, they certainly could be in the future.

Now, head over to your service page and make sure you have all of these pieces in place.

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out – I’m happy to help.

Or if you are ready to drive your business to the next level, fill out the form HERE and let’s connect!

How to Pick a Designer to Work With

I talk to a lot of different types of business owners who are looking to take their business to the “next level.”

But, what does “next level” really mean? It’s subjective and the solutions are different from one client to the next.

 

So, with respect to brand design and development, where and what should you spend your money on? And, how do you find out who the best person or company is to help you get there?

 

I get these questions all the time and the options are seriously endless. Although my company is not the right decision for everyone (far from it), I have developed a sense for what people need, and at what time they need it.

 

Take for instance a recent discussion I had with a prospective client. This individual was ready to build out a brand spanking new business and jump into the excitement of entrepreneurship! However, the individual had little experience in the exact field of business.  This individual had an idea of who to serve yet was not sure about the specific offering. Yes, a lot of uncertainty!

 

Oh, but this is where the excitement begins — bringing clarity and focus to key business decisions which will guide brand design and development!

 

That said, I also understand what an investment this undertaking can be for a prospective client, so when I hear uncertainty (especially a lot of it), I always let them know all of their options.  

 

You see, this specific person had spoken to several marketers and all had been eager to jump into a branding project without suggesting options.

 

For example, there is nothing wrong with launching your business on your own, then circling back when you have spent some time “in your business” and gained new insights (e.g., a bit of experience to gain some initial clarity of your offering or audience).

 

The important point to make here is all about truly understanding the client’s circumstance and meeting them where they are. In this instance, I suggested they take some time out in the market to gain some real in-the-field experience first. Due to timing, resources or circumstances, employing my company may not be in their best interest now. And that’s ok. Sure, I might lose a client in that moment, but I believe a win-win situation is where we all win in the long run.

 

Having this recent experience in mind, I wanted to offer some considerations to help guide you.

BUT FIRST, WHERE ARE YOU?

A. You are curious about starting a new business venture, but not really sure about a lot of things regarding it? Your budget is small but you’re eager to dive in.

B. You have a startup business idea and you have a pretty good idea of your vision, who to serve and what to offer? When you take the leap, you are ready to do it up right. Watch out world, here I come!

C. You have you been running your business for a while, yet you still feel a bit uncomfortable about bigger expenses, so you take it a bit more slowly and chip away at your growth.

D. You have been in business for a while and have outgrown your setup. Perhaps your audience or direction has changed or become much clearer and it’s time to do something about it.

THIS IS WHAT I WOULD SUGGEST:

IF YOU ARE TYPE A

There are so many great online tools or classes that can help you set up a business, logo and website.  For example, you can get a logo at a fairly low cost from places like Fiver or 99Design.  This could be a great place to start, and honestly might be the perfect option for you at this time.  

Budget: > $1,500

IF YOU ARE TYPE B

You are ready to have it done for you and because you are a startup it could be helpful to have somebody give you extra guidance as there are typically a lot of unknowns, even those things you don’t know to ask about just yet.  With that in mind, it’s important you get the right guidance and understand what their capabilities are. Look for a company that puts emphasis on creating clarity and focus prior to executing design.

Budget: $5,000-$10,000

IF YOU ARE TYPE C

It’s okay to build your business slowly, as long as you are still taking action and making moves. In this situation I would consider getting a consultant to give you guidance on what you are building/creating.  Perhaps you might consider working with a freelancer or small design company that offers al a carte services. Or, you might benefit from a Brand Review that provides insight on a specific area of your business, such as messaging, design, SEO, content marketing, etc.

Budget: > $3,000

IF YOU ARE TYPE D

It is time to make sure you find an agency or designer that jives with you. Their design style and values should match yours. They have experience working with businesses in the same field as yours, or who share a similar avatar. They use design for problem solving. They can bounce around ideas with you and challenge your thoughts with their expertise.

It’s a critical time and even if the budget is there, it’s essential that it’s being utilized properly, as there are a plethora of ways you can spend your money, including strategy, design, development, SEO, lead generation, marketing, social media, PR, etc. It’s important you have somebody on your side who has your best interests in mind and who really can guide you on a lot of decisions.

Budget: > $15,000

 

BUT WHERE YOU ARE AND WHAT BUDGET YOU HAVE IS NOT EVERYTHING.

THE RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR DESIGNER/AGENCY IS ESSENTIAL TOO.

here are some things to consider:

  1. How do you like to work? Is it important to collaborate and work closely with your designer or would you prefer handing the reigns over completely, so you can focus on what you do best?

 

  1. What is the size of your project? Is your project large with many requirements and complexities and you’d prefer a bigger team to tackle all components or is it a smaller, more straight-forward project requiring less resources?

 

  1. What values are important to you? Are there certain viewpoints or sensitivities around topics or causes that you’d like your design agency to support and/or have experience with? Perhaps you’d like an agency that gives back to their community, has experience with a variety of cultures, is LGTBQ friendly, etc?

 

  1. Are they forthcoming with information? Do they take the time to understand your unique situation or needs? Are your questions being thoroughly answered? Do they ask smart questions to gain greater insight? Is it clear how they think, how the project would be executed and what’s included in your project? Just because they can create a logo or build a website does not mean they are able to assist you at the level you need.  Make sure to get on a discovery call to find that out before you dive in.

 

  1. Would they be fun to work with? You will most likely spend quite a bit of time with your designer or agency, so make sure it’s a pleasant ride!

 

 

I hope this information helps you. Or forward it to somebody who could benefit from this kind of guidance right now. That would be lovely!

 

If you have any questions, I’m happy to help!

When and How to Say “NO” in Your Business

Saying 'no' is the hardest part.

If you are a people pleaser, saying ‘no’ can be especially difficult. Additionally, if you are in the beginning stages of your business, ‘no’ might not and probably should not be your answer. In that respect, saying ‘no’ is almost a luxury to look forward to, but it should be used sooner than later.

Down below I have included three different stages that you might be in, in your business, and the appropriate response at that time. i.e. how to say ‘no’. Find your statement (or read them all for reference) to see where on the ‘no’ scale you are.

As always, there are also some extra goodies in the accompanying video.  (The wind in particularly, is meant to be there 😉 )

Being self aware in your business will help you know when to say 'no'.

Knowing yourself and where you are at in your business is critical to be able to make educated decisions in your business. Check out these statements below. Whichever one is you, that is how and when you will say ‘no’.

Number 01. "Hey there, just starting out"

When you first start your business, you say ‘yes’ to everything left and right… and I think you should as long as it’s not obvious you shouldn’t. i.e. if saying ‘yes’ goes directly against your values or isn’t in the ballpark of the service that you provide.

By saying yes, you figure out who you want to work with, what you like to do and how you like to do it.  It’s the perfect time to hone-in on a process or system and build a foundation for the future.

 

The most important thing, during this time (and any time really), is to work with the intention of figuring out who you want to work with, how you want to work them and what you want to work on.

 

I know it can be hard when people like me say that you need to know why you are doing things, and proceed to ask you who you want to work with and how you are serving them… and frankly, in the beginning, you most likely don’t know and that’s OK.

It’s actually more than ok, it’s really where you should be.

Just like when you are learning anything, you just have to start, mess up a bit, adjust, and keep going.

Number 02. "oh yes, I have been around for a bit"

 

If you are passed the beginning stages of running your business, you might be asking yourself when it’s time to say ‘no’ or how you know when to say ‘no’ to new work or “opportunities” that might not be aligned with what you want, what you like to do, and/or where you are going.

When you have worked with clients who do not value time like you do, who are cheap, who micromanage you, who are late, who are on time, who don’t question your pricing, who laugh at your jokes … (AKA the good and the bad), then, you will start to be able to see who and how you serve your clients best, and at the same time, you will also know the opposite— who you don’t want to work with.

[Sometimes it’s easier to point out who or what you don’t want to work with/on]

 

So basically, the answer to the question “How do you know when to say ‘no’? is by doing the work.

 

When you do that, you will also start realizing what you enjoy more and start looking around to see what possibilities are out there that you can create and then, all of a sudden, your vision on how the future should look becomes clearer as well. When you know where you want to take your business and what kind of opportunities you are looking for, you also know which ones you should not take.

Number 03. "I am ready for the next of everything"

Then it’s time to say no more often! 

If a project doesn’t align with you, if it’s not going in the direction you see your company going, if you don’t have bandwidth, if something doesn’t feel right or if you really aren’t the service provider for that project— let it go. 

How do you say no? Simply be honest. You don’t have to over explain anything. Respect yourself, respect others and let them know. You most likely would want that courtesy yourself— so give it to others.

How I see it: It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it.

Yes, of course business is about providing service and making money, but it’s so much more than that too. For us, it’s a lifestyle, so I believe working in a place of joy and from heart, is just as important.

The sooner you start to say no to work that doesn’t align with your values or direction, the sooner you give space for the work that does.

Round up:

  • Mess up and realign
  • Pay attention
  • Reflect on your intentions
  • It’ not what you say, it’s how you say it.
 
Let’s get to work!

How to Connect with Your People

be yourself + be really clear on who you serve and how you serve them.

As always, to every deep question there is a short answer and a long answer.

That being said, the short and simple answer to how to connect with your people, has three core parts.

– Be yourself
– What problem are you solving?
– For whom are you solving that problem?

But, I know what you are thinking— ‘that’s easier said than done…’

Well, that is precisely why I include the long answer as well. 😉

In this week’s video I broke down how to find your people and answered these core questions by using one of my lovely clients as a sample. Hopefully, that will make it easier for you to answer the questions for yourself.

Oh, and I also added a little something extra at the end, to help you understand how to take action and actually find your people.

Watch the video to find out how; you + solution + who = your sweet spot

and I’ll see you on the other side.

Part of being me, is being personal and real with my clients.

Of course, I am still professional and there are boundaries, but for me building professional relationships in a way that makes people feel like they can come to me with any questions, is very important.

In your situation, you have to define and understand YOUR personality, and what makes you different. The more you understand this, the easier it will be to connect with your audience. Whether that is in person, over a call, on social media, or wherever else you interact with your current and ideal customers or clients.

Number 01. Define your own personality & what makes you different

The first thing I would ask yourself here is: How would I describe myself to a complete stranger? (like an elevator pitch, but for your personality).  I have added a few more of my clients as samples here, so you can see different answers:

  1. Are you that clever and funny person, who, no matter what you say, somehow makes everyone laugh?
  2. Are you the fashion forward professional, who gets a kick out of knowing and studying rules or laws?
  3. Are you the person who loves bringing people together, doing good in the community and loves a culinary experience?

No matter what it is, I can’t think of a single time that it isn’t better to be yourself… [if you can, definitely let me know].
So, the first step is to be yourself. That will help you connect with the people who you are supposed to connect with.

Number 02. What problem are you solving?

Adding on to the samples mentioned above, this next step shows the problems they solve, which helps to further clarify each of their brands and takes us one step closer to their sweet spot of connecting with their people:

  1. How to plan clients financial future and build their wealth so they can live a worry-free sustainable life.
  2. Helping people understand the rules of golf, so they can be more efficient on the course and enjoy the game more too.

  3. Creating an unforgettable culinary experience in an exceptional ambiance and educating folks on Mezcal, Mexico and its culture.

Number 03. get specific on who you solve that problem for.

Now, if you are farther along in your business, this might seem like child’s play to you. But you would be surprised how many business owners I’ve worked with that weren’t NEARLY as clear on the people they serve as they thought. 

Most everyone says that they can help everyone, but although, truthfully they can… when they try to connect with everyone, what they are really doing is connecting with no one. Connecting with your people means saying things that makes your audience get that ‘holy moly she is in my head’ feeling. But the problem is, when you try to talk to everyone, nobody gets that feeling… so what you are left with is a message to a bunch of people that doesn’t resonate with anyone. yikes.

Therefore, when you are trying to narrow down who you solve the problem for (questions 2), you have to narrow it down to a defined group. I know it may feel like you’re cutting off a limb, but I promise that if you talk to a very defined group of people, they will start to get that ‘holy moly she’s in my head’ feeling, and they will be knocking on your door begging to work with you.

So, to keep going with the three samples:

  1. Ladies in the tech industry, who know they thrive by having a community of light hearted support surrounding them.
  2. Ladies who are between 40 and 70 years old, who love the game of golf, the golf lifestyle,  fashion and traveling to magnificent places.
  3. People who love a beautiful culinary experience, don’t just want to eat to cure their hunger, but really want to enjoy it. People who have an interest in spirits, Mexico, Mexican cuisine and like giving back.

Alright, so now it’s time to add it all together, and when you do you will have a big part of your brand or niche clarified (and with that, know how to to connect with your people)!

YOU + SOLUTION + WHO = YOUR SWEET SPOT

These questions, tend to look easy to answer from the outside, but when you sit down to really answer them it can be a bit daunting, so I hope these samples help you out.


Also, if you pay extra attention to who you like to work with while you are providing your services, that is also a super helpful way to get clear on who your people are.

The best part is, when you start working with more of your people— it all becomes worth it.

 
Now, write down your answers to these questions, and be brutally honest and succinct about who you are, what you offer and who you want to serve, and I promise you that if you do this and it shows up in your messaging everywhere… you will attract the people you want to work with, and they will be so excited to work with you too.
 
Do you have any questions?

How to Write Copy for a Website

I have always had a hard time writing.

Have you ever heard anyone say to focus on the things you are good at, instead of always trying to get better at the things you aren’t good at?

 

Well, in the entrepreneurial world I’d be surprised if you hadn’t… but if you haven’t, now you’ve heard it from me.

Everyone has weaknesses, but something you probably didn’t expect here is for me to give you advice on your website copy right after I tell you that one of my biggest weaknesses is writing.

 

Stay with me!

 

Everything about writing is not grammar or spelling.

 

A big part of writing is the structure and over arching concepts, and how to use it to connect people with what they are looking for, which is what I have mastered and what I want to share with you today.

So, even if I keep telling myself that one day I’ll work on learning how to write,  the truth is, it’s probably a skill I will never really master. In other words, I will keep improving on the overall concept, and keep surrounding myself with skillful writers for the rest.

 

Sooo, if you are a client of mine, don’t worry, you will most certainly keep getting emails along the lines of:

..as good ass that sounds, I think….or I’ll be happy to hope on a call with you… or I can’t remeber the last time I saw….

The giggles are on the house, you are welcome (and if typos are your pet peeve… sorry, I might not be your gal).

I'm not here to teach you Spelling or grammar.

I’m here to teach you structure and give you overall tips for copywriting that I know work. 

I have 4 rules for copy that have nothing to do with grammar or spelling that are vital for the success of any website.

Ready?

Number 01.

You must simplify to amplify. I know that people use this phrase a lot for different reasons, but when it comes to your website less really is more, so what I always tell clients is to follow the 3 R’s: Refine, Rinse and Repeat. When you think you’ve simplified enough, think again and simplify some more. The goal is to get your point across as directly as possible without losing your tone of voice.

(Side note: This does not apply in the same sense when you dive deeper into the website. i.e. on your blog.)

Number 02.

Be honest about your company size everywhere on your site. For example, if you are a one man show, don’t use the word “we”. Your website is there to let the viewer know who you are and to build trust so you can, at one point, exchange money for your service/product… and what kind of trust are you building if you are pretending to be something you are not?

On the other hand, if you are the show, but you have a team, you can use the words “my team and I”. Additionally, if you are a team or partners, “we” is appropriate.

Number 03.

What is the purpose of your website? (every website or page should have 1 main one). 

For example: Do you want them to sign up for your email list? Do you want them to call you? Do you want them to buy a specific service?  (HINT: I typically try to guide the viewer to a soft connection first, like a lead magnet or a discovery call – It’s nicer and less pushy)

Number 04.

Finally, structure.  When it comes to writing great copy you need to have the right structure to help the viewer find what they are looking for. Remember, we are not trying to force sell anything here; we are helping the right people find the right stuff for them.

On that note, the analogy I  like to use that helps people better understand how you want to structure  website copy is that of somebody asking for directions to a restaurant or a bathroom. 

Yup, something along the lines of: go down the hall way there, take a left and another left and then on the right you’ll find it.

You want to guide your user to their desired destination in sort of the same way….

Read here, scroll there, click the big button here, add your name and then BOOM they get what they are looking for!

I will use the home page as a sample of my ‘copy order of operations’, since that is one of the most if not the most important page on your site.

 
Now go look at your website to see if you are following these 4 rules! If you do, I will promise you are set up for success, leads and sales!
 
Do you have any questions?

How to Up Your Game – Nerd Style

Success is subjective.

Meaning that it looks different for everyone.
I was recently in a bit of a rut…not the normal motivation and drive I typically have (even before coronavirus started putting all of us into a tizzy). So even though I sort of want to just hide, my logical mind knows that the only way to get out of it, is to make some moves.

Not always easy, but necessary.

Sooo, I made a chart and created a 30 day challenge for myself to track a few activities that are important to me, (using big Xs to make sure I do them).

Creating a visual has always helped me, it’s tangible and real aaand I get to check things off and that feeling just makes any rut at least a tiny bit better!

That being said, big goals are fabulous and got to have them, but I believe it’s the small ones that make the big difference, really.

That is why I listed the things I wanted to do on the Y axis and days on the X axis, and I get a big X on completion every day!

Satisfaction!

Now I can easily keep myself accountable and see when I do well (…and not so well).

My Y axis:

1. Movement— got to move every day even if it’s just a walk in the park (pun…sort of intended)

2. Sugarless days (with one cheat day)— I love to bake, Swedish candy and such and sometimes I might have a tendency to over do it… so it’s time to keep my self in check!

3. Social interactions— If you want interaction you need to interact. (Which is easier said than done, if you ask me.)

4. Daily Journal— Everyone always talks about journaling, everywhere… and I sort of journal… but now I’m testing out the hype!

 
4 big Xs in a day, and I’m happy(ier)!

How about you, how do you get yourself to make moves?