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7 Free Productivity Tools that Will Save You Time in Your Business

You’re an entrepreneur, and you’re busy – I get it! Not only are you working at your craft, you’re also doing a lot of other tasks required to make your business succeed. Personally, I wish I could just design logos and websites all day, but as business owners, we have to wear a ton of hats! From networking, to make sales calls, to sending invoices, to managing social media, and much more, it sucks up a lot of time. So who wouldn’t want to save time on certain tasks where we can? Well, I have been using some pretty awesome productivity tools that have helped me tremendously, and I’m sure they will help you too. Best of all, these are all free! 7 Free Productivity Tools For Busy Entrepreneurs 1. Asana Of all these tools I’m about to share, I’m starting with my favorite! I’ve searched for months for a project management tool just to manage my business tasks, and I recently discovered Asana. I used to get overwhelmed with everything on my plate. My wife would always tell me to make a list, and she was right! Making lists gets tasks off your mind, you can visually see what […]

Why You Shouldn’t Hire a Web Designer to Build Your Website

If you are thinking about getting a website for your business, or redesigning your existing one, you’re probably trying to figure out the best route to take. With all the new platforms out there, should you do it yourself? Or should you hire a web designer? And if you were to hire a web designer, how do you know what kind of designer to hire? I am a web designer based out of Charleston, SC, but it may come as a surprise to you that I don’t think you should hire a designer to build your site… At least, they shouldn’t be just a designer. As a designer myself, I get excited at the prospect of building you a beautiful, modern website that will impress your customers. However, I know that you don’t simply need a beautiful website… You need a beautiful website that will actually help you meet your business goals – whether that be generating leads, converting browsers into buyers, building an email list, etc. While there are a lot of web designers out there, many of them only understand graphic design – they do not understand the fundamentals of marketing. Your website is one of the most […]

9 Hacks That Will Boost SEO On Your Blog

9 Simple Hacks That Will Boost SEO On Your Blog

Whether you’re trying to improve the search ranking of your blog posts, or make your business website searchable in Google, blogging can be a great tool for SEO. So, when you’re writing that next post, try and implement these 9 practical tips to help boost SEO on your blog and your website. In my last post, The Secret to Good SEO for Business Owners, I explained why blogging and producing great content can be your greatest ally for Search Engine Optimization. Now that you’ve created that great content, what you need to do is make it easy for Google to find it. That’s what we’ll be talking about here. While the previous post focused on the theory behind strong SEO, these tips will be very practical. By using the principles from the last post in conjunction with these tips, you’ll be sure to get your posts ranked on Google. 9 Simple Hacks to Boost SEO On Your Blog 1. Determine a Keyword Phrase. You need to determine a short phrase that encapsulates what your blog post is about. This keyword is a phrase that you believe a person will type into the Google search box. It should be fairly specific, something […]

The Secret to Good SEO for Business Owners

Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, can be a bear. You’ve got enough on your plate trying to run a business that having to worry about SEO can feel a bit overwhelming! You’ll find a lot of info online and a lot of so-called “experts” saying different things, so I know it can get confusing. But I want to give it to you straight. I’m going to give you one overarching principle that will set you on the right path towards good SEO! Essentially, good SEO comes down to producing great content. Content can come in the form of articles, videos, infographics, etc. But the most effective by far is blog posts. Yes, even as a business, you need to have a blog! Why Does Blogging Help SEO? The reason is that Google wants to deliver their users with quality content. Search engines have these things called “web crawlers” which scan the internet and index content. They are looking for that great content to put on the front page of search results. But here’s the thing, they generally only scan (and rescan) when new content is added or existing content is updated. (By the way, the following info applies to all […]

Write a good elevator pitch with this simple template

Write a Killer Elevator Pitch with this Easy Template

I’ve discovered the incredible value of business networking as a way to promote my design services and work with other like-minded people. But the thing about networking is that you often only get a short opportunity to make an impression. For these situations, it’s important that you prepare a good elevator pitch. If you follow this easy template to write a great elevator pitch, you’ll be sure to not waste those opportunities! I wrote this post because I see many business owners making crucial mistakes when given the opportunity to share about their business. In fact, I wrote about that in my post 6 Mistakes You’re Making in Your Elevator Pitch, and I strongly recommend you check that out before you look at this template so that you’ll understand the rationale behind this template. But in short, we are aiming to write an elevator pitch that is (1) brief, (2) clear, (3) simple to understand, (4) has a singular focus, and (5) shows how you add value. With each interaction, the goal is not just to make a good impression, but the right impression. This goes for whether you’re just introducing yourself to someone new or giving a short presentation. […]

6 Mistakes You’re Making in Your Elevator Pitch

Since I moved to Charleston, SC a few months ago, I’ve been pushing myself to get out and network around town. I’ve found it to be a valuable way to get my name out there and build people’s trust by making those personal connections. My elevator pitch is something I’ve needed to have ready at all times. Already I’ve given it too many times to count, and I’ve heard the elevator pitches of many other business owners – a lot of good ones, but also a lot of not-so-good-ones. Even if your elevator pitch needs some work, it’s not too late to write a good one. I’ve actually created a template on how to write a killer elevator pitch, but before I teach you what to do, there’s a lot we can learn from what not to do… 6 Mistakes to Avoid in Your Elevator Pitch 1. Talking For Too Long With my Elevator Pitch Template, you’ll actually come away with three different pitches for different scenarios. The pitches can be divided into 10-second, 30-second, and 60-second pitches, but in reality, you shouldn’t even come close to taking up that much time for each. I’ve sat through many “60-second pitches” […]

Define Your Target Market with these 5 Simple Steps

In a previous post, I talked about the importance of defining your target market and the ways you will save a ton of time and money by doing so. Now I want to show you how to define that target demographic so that you can start generating those warm leads and referrals. 1. Observe who currently uses what you offer Perhaps this may be obvious to some, but I understand that it’s easy to get caught up in the nitty-gritty of our business that we fail to consider some of the basics. Ask yourself who it is that currently uses this kind of product or service. Let’s say you offer a new health food product. It’s easy to think, “Well, everybody needs this product.” That may very well be true, but that doesn’t mean everybody would be likely to buy a product like yours. So focus on the people who currently buy similar products. Trust me, you’ll waste a lot of time and money trying to reach everybody. Determining your target demographic doesn’t mean you can’t sell to someone outside of that demographic—it just means you don’t waste your resources trying to market to them. 2. Research your competition If it’s […]

Why Your Instagram Engagement Has Suddenly Dropped Off and What the Shadowban Means for Your IG Marketing

Maybe you are one of the many people who has seen a sudden drop in engagement on Instagram. Don’t worry, you’re not alone – many Instagram users are experiencing the effects of the shadowban – myself included. As a business owner trying to market my business on Instagram, I know firsthand that it can be very frustrating. That’s why I want help you understand what’s happening, and what you need to do to fix it. What exactly is happening? You may be a victim of what they’re calling a “shadowban”. There’s some history behind this term, but in short, it refers to when your account gets blocked or stifled by moderators. And here’s the kicker: it’s done in such a way that you don’t even know it’s happening! On Instagram, this has been going on since February, but it seems to be affecting more and more Instagramers even recently. Instagram has not fully owned up to the fact, and because of this there’s a lot we still don’t know, but here’s what we do know… We know that Instagram is cracking down on “bots” and services that automatically post, like, and comment for you. This, of course, is a good thing because […]

Why Defining Your Target Market Will Save You Time and Money

When I started my company, I had zero business background. No MBA, I’d never taken a business class – never even did the whole lemonade stand thing. So, if you’re like me, you probably found that there’s a bit of a learning curve when starting a business. I want to help you out with one of the biggest tips I could give that will save you time, money, and headaches! You’ve got to define your target market… We’re talking about determining who those people are who want to buy from you. How old are they? What are their interests? Are they a Consumer or a Business? and so on. It’s about getting specific. Many business owners I speak to say they are trying to reach everybody, so they don’t take this step seriously. So what they end up doing is aiming at everything, and hitting nothing! If you haven’t taken this crucial step yet for your business—or if you’ve only done a half-baked version of it—I’m going to give you 4 reasons why you absolutely need to now! 4 Reasons Why You Need to Define Your Target Market 1. Never need to cold-call Cold-calling sucks! I know very few people […]