by Hassan del Campo
As a new and emerging business, you always learn to embrace the journey. But, sometimes we need to look more established than we already are. It’s just the nature of things – people are likely to be hesitant about a new business (especially if they suspect they are the first customer). Fortunately, there are an array of applications that you can use to transform your business from an inexperienced “newbie” to an energetic, new startup.
Presentation matters. Details count.
When you’re a new business you practically have all the time in the world to get it right, because no one knows of you yet. During this time it is important to not rush, but make sure you take purposeful steps with vision and care. It is during this pre-launch stage where the identity of your business takes form.
Here is a list (that will be updated periodically) to review that will help your business be one of the loudest in the room.
- Grammarly – People pay attention to the details, but they don’t always bring them up. Preventable distractions, such as a misspelled word in an email to a potential client, can leave lasting impressions and might sabotage the sale. Grammarly is a great tool for proof-reading nearly everything. The free version can be added to your web browser as an extension, giving you access to a powerful and intuitive spell check application for emails, blog posts, Word documents, and even tweets.
- HubSpot’s Email Signature Tool – Isn’t HubSpot awesome? This nifty tool allows you to create professional looking email signatures easily (and by easy we mean “copy-n-paste” style). Quiet as kept, email signatures are great, but under-utilized real estate for placing CTAs, promoting new products, and other ways to leave deeper impressions in communicating with prospects or clients. Lastly, it assists with branding. And this HubSpot tool makes sure you’ll be represented well.
- Get a logo made – More now so than ever, brand identity and marketing go hand-in-hand. Without one your business looks underdeveloped. Logos are an excellent way to build your brand. Fiverr is a decent place to get a custom-made logo between $5 and $30. You can always get professionally made logos from experts found on UpWork, Thumbtack, and several other platforms. Once you’ve found the right logo make sure you incorporate it on all your marketing collateral. YouTube even allows users to set a logo as a watermark.
- Get a copywriter to put the
finishingessential touches on your web pages. According to Lynette Tan copywriting for your website is important because “Unlike news or editorial writing, copywriting is all about getting the reader to take action- to buy, subscribe to emailers, or to keep updated with company news/products.” Copywriting is an often neglected, vastly underutilized tool – especially for new business owners. Having a sexy website can only get you so far. If your copy does not engage your customers and/or does not “read well” for search engines you’ve skipped over a very important step; optimization.
- Make sure you look good. How you present your business to the world is a direct reflection of how you feel about your business. While branding is important, equally important is the execution of how you present your business, visually. Fortunately, there are a plethora of awesome free tools online that can empower even the most artistically-challenged. One such great tool is Adobe Spark, which allows you to create personalized images and videos for free. With the popularity and efficacy of video on the rise, free applications like Adobe Spark make it easier for the novice to dive in and look like a rockstar.
- Have a company email. I know that is a duh statement, but you’ll be surprised how many business owners don’t have one. Sure, you can get by without one, but why? First impressions count and your customers & clients will most likely expect you to have a company/branded email. Google’s G Suite offers emails at $5/month per account. After our internal email disaster with SiteBuilder in which we lost emails on all three of our accounts, it’s better to use a reputable service that’s secure and stable.
- Have a company phone. If you need to start lean, Google Voice is still offering free phone numbers (though all the “good” ones have probably been claimed). You can forward your Google number to your cell phone or even a landline. It also comes with the capability to receive and send SMS text messages and images – which you can do from any computer or smartphone.
- Automate when possible. On this blog we talk about automation a lot because, well, it’s important. And automation just makes sense. Imagine how much more efficient you could be if parts of your business ran on autopilot. This is essentially the guiding principle behind automation. For starters, nearly anything internet-based can be automized.