It’s easy to view your website as just another marketing tool. Sure, it can definitely play a big role in generating sales but it is so much more than that. I like to view it as a book cover. Like it or not, we judge a book by its cover and the same is true when viewing a website. It’s the book cover of your business. And that’s just the beginning of its potential.
In this blog series, I will be asking inspiring small business owners about what they do and the importance of their website. The series is intended to inspire you to see beyond the text and images on a page and also to relate to others who may be on a similar journey to you.
Remember, your website is worthy of time and energy to really showcase just what your business is all about.
Nell Casey of Nell Casey Creative shares her insights below.
How long ago did you make the trusting leap to start your business and what was the catalyst that told you “hey, I can actually do this and do it well”?
I launched my copywriting business 3 ½ years ago after spending around six months building it up as a side hustle. When I went full time with it I had a couple of clients already on board and a decent amount of work in my portfolio and I think that was an important element of feeling confident that I could do this on a full time basis.
I also figured that if it didn’t work out, I could go back and get a job. Thankfully I haven’t had to consider that since then.
What is your ‘why’? What lights you up each day to continue doing what you do?
As a copywriter I honestly still get a thrill every time I see my words live on a website. But more than that, I like to know that my words are making a difference for my clients. The best feedback I get is when my clients tell me how much their customers connect with their copy or buy as a result of a really funny or engaging product description.
Each business is unique and no one marketing plan works for everyone. For you, which marketing activities have really helped to propel your business forward to attract more of your desired clients/customers?
There are a few things that have really helped to grow my business over the last few years. One of these is being active on social media. I don’t mean just posting for the sake of posting. I mean getting active in Facebook Groups and really looking to help people (rather than just drop a link to my website).
As a result of this activity, naturally people head over to my website to find out who I am.
I also get a lot of work through referrals from my existing clients, and even clients coming back to me after we worked together a few years ago. That’s probably the most rewarding thing as it means they’ve really enjoyed working together.
For the past year I have also been working on improving my rankings in search results through SEO, which has led to a steady increase in enquiries.
Often we take our website for granted and think, “oh that thing, that’s just a requirement of my business”. Obviously your website plays a bigger role than this so, upon reflection, what role does your website play in your business?
My website is basically the hub of my brand – where potential clients can really get to know me, before contacting me to find out about working together.
At the start of 2016 I rebranded my website and worked really hard to put as much of myself as possible into it. Clients consistently tell me how much they love my website, which is great for my ego (obviously). But it also means I’m attracting clients who share my approach, values and odd sense of humour.
As with anything business related (or life related for that matter) there’s a learning curve and some trial and error until we get it right. What advice would you give to your just-starting-out-in-business self about how to go about your website and online marketing?
I think you have to accept that your website and marketing approach will evolve over time, just like your business.
I totally get the temptation to get things ‘just right’ from the start. But that can often be a barrier to moving forward or experimenting with things. If you can let go of that and get things ‘good enough’ you’ll free up time to better serve your clients and figure out what you really want to do.
What are one or two things that are on your website wish list and how do you see them coming to fruition?
For me there are two things I’d like to incorporate into my website, and my marketing as a whole. The first is incorporating an online course platform into my site so I can expand who I work with beyond my one-on-one clients.
From a marketing point of view, my goal is to include more video content on my website in 2018. This will involve learning about how to create and edit images using my phone and creating some consistent branding so I can use this content to find more clients.
Nell Casey is an SEO copywriter and content strategist who works with creative small businesses to help them tell their story, connect with customers and build their brands online. With a speciality in working with ecommerce brands in the fashion, lifestyle and design space, Nell is adept at taking bland product descriptions and turning them into sparkling copy that turns browsers into buyers.