Should You Focus on Websites or Social Media When Starting Up?

This was recorded LIVE at our Maidstone Rebel Business School on 5th July 2018 Subscribe to our channel here:

Note: This transcription has been generated with AI and there may be errors present. 


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what’s the point below? Some pains which include some pain and then feeding most the donor Some aren’t here. This is

shocking and wants to do surgery

right everyone leaves coming in with the camera is live you know what we wanted to look away? Hello Facebook rescue in less you? Right we’re live on Facebook. Hello Facebook, you are live in Maidstone. Quick Hi. Excellent. So the purpose of these Facebook Lives is as your business progresses, you’ll have different questions. And it’s for us to be able to answer those questions and to help you get your business to the next level wherever that is for you to grow at slightly different places. So that’s the purpose. Katie’s on social media finding the questions Liam’s doing this bit, and the other Katie and I will be answering the questions. Hello, so shall we like, I’d like to I always like to start with the people who actually here. Send us your questions, put them in the comments, we’ll answer them. Katie’s on it now. But like who would like to start from we’ve been here for days together now. You must have some questions.

We are going to focus on kept things from being broader. So we need to do a bit of rebranding, which do we do first the social media and getting followers on the website so that when we got followers,

I would do your social media first. The two business partners had two different views, I would do social media first. The reason is, that’s where your customers are. At this stage, your brand is important. Your name is important. Your colours are important, but not as important as talking directly to the people who can buy. So I would definitely go out on social media and talk to those customers. And we’ve seen lots of businesses who build up a big social following, before they’re even ready to sell. Because then when the product or service or thing is to sell, you’ve already got an audience, and it makes your job so much better. So even if you’re not quite ready, get out there and build the community of cat lovers or community of art lovers. When you are ready, then you’ve already done the hard work. So definitely I’ll agree with Katie, get online get social get out there first. Looks like the daughter one on this one. Unfortunately. Hello collect? Can you can you run multiple Twitter accounts? Yes is the simple answer I have at Alan Donegan, which is me where I mainly talk to my friends and talk about pizza and Lego. And I have x pop up business, which is the business account. And actually, the business account is accessed by Liam and me and Katie and the whole team have access to it. I definitely don’t want to give Liam access to my personal accounts, it would be great is split focus leads to split results. So if you’ve got five Twitter accounts, it’s very difficult to keep up and manage them all. So having one specifically for business and the people you reach will enable you to have better focus. We had a lovely lady in Poplar, she was running two businesses. She’d spent all day building a website. She came to me very proud of the website. And to be honest, they looked really good. On the homepage. It said, Would you like business a or business B? And business a was a recruitment business? So you’re looking to recruitment someone or are you looking for a job? And business B was would you like hen party gift baskets. So if you’re going on a hand, the party will send you a care package. Do the people who are looking for recruitment and jobs want to know anything about hen party relief packages and what comes in those and vice versa to the hidden party. People even want to be thinking about work when they’re doing that. And they’re two different. So if you’ve got completely different subject, you would have a different Twitter account or a different website. Otherwise you’ve got confused messaging. And we’re back to that confusing messaging confusing results. Yeah, did that. Happy? Collects happy. Excellent. Is anyone watching case? Yes.

Laura says she’s stalking you from Bridgend. And she’d like to know what are your top three tips for the best way to keep a good work life balance and build your business, the

top three tips to a good work life balance? I’m not sure I’m the best to tell that one because I’m not sure I have the best work life balance. Well, I discovered this a while ago. And if you love what you do, you don’t really go to work. So there’s lots of different tips and books about how to separate work from home. For me, they kind of merged. But I looked what I did. My business was part of our family. So we kind of talked over dinner. And we did the washing up and we talked more about it. It’s not right for everybody. Some people like to work here. Some people like to get home here, you got to find the right balance for you what feels right, what if you love what you do, and it’s exciting, kind of merges in a little bit, can emerges. And then you get to the point where it’s 10 o’clock at night, you’re feeling tired, and you feel like you’re losing because you want to go to bed where it’s actually you want to stay up and do what you do. And if you really do truly love what you love, do what you love, then it doesn’t. He doesn’t genuinely doesn’t feel like work. And we have breakfast in the morning and talk about work. Not like that. Then we have the sounds a bit weird, doesn’t it? We’re staying in the same hotel, separate rooms. But we talk a breakfast and then we run the workshop and then we debrief at nights. And then we’re working out like we’re sat at Curry thinking how best can we help the people we’re working with. And we really truly enjoy what we do. So I think from the outside in, I have a horrendous work life balance. But I’ll tell you what, I love it. I love what I do. I love helping people. I don’t really care. The only bit that I do have a cautionary tale is the health that make sure you make time to do fitness. Look after your diet. Sleep. Sleep is important and all that stuff. Sometimes I forget because I get so excited about life that I forget to look after myself. And I think that’s a big watch out for a lot of us. Yes.

Thank you for the question, Laura. We’ve had lots of hellos. Hello, from Dover. Dover, Dover. And we’ve had hello from Andre Griffiths actually asked a question last time on Facebook, which was, and it’s making money out of taking people on tours of small businesses in Cardiff. Number one, how do I do it? Number two, how do I approach them?

It’s quite a tough one. You go first. Well, I think cool. So if I was to set up a tour company, and I’ve toyed with the idea of doing tours of Basingstoke, you might be I think I could launch that. Because amazing stoke tours. That would be I could sell that. But basically, you need the description of what it is you do very, very simply. And then you need to find people who would buy it. And that’s kind of the key bit. There’s many ways to do this. Number one would be affiliates. So we spoke yesterday about you being affiliates of other people’s products. It works both ways. Other people can be affiliates of your products. An example of this recently as I was booking a flight to New York. And when I booked the flight, it said would you also be interested in experiences? And I thought, yes. So I clicked and there was a pizza tour of New York. What did you think I thought, like pizza tour of New York, I’m in and I booked right there. And then the airline was British Airways. Do you think ba was running a pizza tour of New York? No, it was someone else’s company and BA got a commission for selling it. So I would find affiliates who would sell your tour your product different places. So that’ll be number one. Number two, there’s Airbnb has just released Airbnb experiences for different towns. I’d be looking to get my tour of Basingstoke Cardiff on there. Then there’s going to be groups and Facebook pages and all the marketing methods we’ve spoken about. But the key is have a fairly simple description of what it is you do that sells and gets people excited. And then go big and promoted absolutely everywhere. I agree. I mean, when you say billiards, I would say, Coach companies to train companies. You don’t have to go to Airbnb, there’s lots of small places you can go to. Lots of taxi people also have the minibosses as well, that people they bring people out of town and in. So you can do this small as well. You don’t have to go to British Airways or Airbnb to do. Perfect. So get it out there and re just get it out there. She came on the card, of course, she’s fabulous. Launch it. press publish. Now

we’ve got a bit of a troublemaker. His name is Simon pain. He sends love from Zoho and he would like to know what’s the average airspeed velocity of an unladen? Swallow?

I’m in pain is my business partner? If you can find him online? Please give him abuse. He’s at Simon pain on Twitter? Or is on Facebook, just like send them some messages abuse? Maidstone is way better than both

Simon and Africa, European swallow?

Yes, we have a question from the back, your natural voice this one. About ongoing personal accounts. If you grow your business doesn’t matter. It depends. Like for some of us, our business might be us. And I would definitely say there’s a caveat, which is people buy from people, like they see the brand, but they don’t necessarily always connect with the big brand new guy from the actual person. So if you’re an individual consultants, your name is the company, that’s you, they’ll by you, when I was running training courses, they did not care that I was enjoy presenting. The companies wanted Alan to do the course. So I think as an individual consultants, it’s your name. And there’s no natural way around that that’s what people are going to buy. But for some of us like cat products, we might go for a cat related business. Cat related business name. But for consultants, absolutely. I would not dilute that at all. I go for one account one name, and then say what type of consultant what type of training what type of thing I do. Definitely, hello, leave.

Decrease about what’s stopping me now from starting my business? And my answer was experience. So what would be your advice on how I can go

and find experience has gone on? So I’ve got an answer, Katie will go first. You don’t need experience. You just need to do it. Scary because that seems really scary. You need to do it. Face painting company. calm face paint. Big high profile client, really worried about doing it nervous. Just did it because I went along with it, did it? It happened, we all survived. The children survive. Everybody was fine. Face Painting wasn’t great. As my brother would say, live to fight another day. So then we did it again. Next time I’ve got somebody but I understood what it was like and I learned he can have to just go into it. Take that step. It’s worth it is scary. But it’s actually not that bad when you get there. Okay, we are thinking about way scarier. The way I did it was I went and actually did my product or service for free in different places. So I would go and do a taste for someone. And knowing that I’d managed to do it and that people liked it. And it was successful, gave me confidence. And there’s this whole thing that good judgement is often the result of experience, which is often the result of bad judgement. And actually, you’ve got to go out there and get it wrong. To know how you can get it right. Like when Facebook Live that launch, we’ve never done live TV. We’ve never done any of that we just went we’ll have a go. We’ll see what happens. This may or may not be amazing. I don’t know you’ll tell us in the comments. But you have to have a go and the 10th time we’ve done this, the show will be way better than it is now. The only way to get experience is to go and do it. I would say that it could be useful. Testing on clients. That won’t be your biggest paying clients in the future. So if you can test it on a friend or family, you can do it for someone that will give you confidence that it actually works. My version was going and speaking at Toastmasters, and then running different workshops. And then all of a sudden, I’ve done it for free. And I have proof for myself, which built my self confidence to actually go and do it. But you got to get out there and do it. The only way, the only way. The only way. Perfect.

Got a question from Naomi on the Facebook Live. She’s doing really well she has.

She has a van gratulations on the van, no man, she’s having

a bit of a dilemma. She wants to expand and take on another person. But she doesn’t think she can afford it straight away. On the flip side, she wouldn’t actually be able to grow her business without adding another person. She’s a dog walker. So what’s your advice on that?

I have no idea. Do you have an idea? Well, I would have an idea which goes back to, if you can do it for free, do it. So if you need extra, an extra pair of hands for dog walking is for a friend, is there a teenage 1617 year old school leaver she can take and then she doesn’t have to pay them, it can be a work experience. But it’s also you don’t want to exploit people either. So we have to kind of be nice to friends sort of thing. And then also, the other way to do it is to do it freelance. So rather than taking somebody on and having to go get an employment contract, and then it can be your corporate employee, you can do it freelance. So that person will invoice the company invoice the dog walking company. So I’ll say to leave, for example, I need help on Mondays and Wednesdays you’ll go great I can I’m free Mondays and Wednesdays, this is how much I am a day. Well, I believe that shake hands on that you send me an invoice for those days. And then I pay you one invoice. But you’re not my employer, you’re like my contractor, you’re almost like a take on another company to help him. So that’s an easy way to do it. That was how I grew my business. I got to the stage where I was selling more courses than I could cope with. That I wasn’t I didn’t have the money in the bank to get an actual member of staff. And I didn’t want that responsibility of pensions and stuff. So I took on a contractor, which then there’s no responsibility. Like you do a contract for a two week course. And if I don’t win another one, I don’t still have to pay their wages. So contractor if you can find another dog sitter, another dog walker, that doesn’t have all the business they want, find them and use them as a contractor. That’s the best way around it. It’s the actual getting the van, we’re back the five ways to start for free, which is can I get it for free? Can I borrow it? Can I barter for it? Could I sell stuff to raise the money to do it? Or could I sell my value before I create it? So could I get the people who want dog walking to commit upfront to doing it for a period of time and pay me some money upfront, that gets me enough to get the money to get the deposit on the van. Great way of doing that is to add an extra dog walk. So if you booked five paid in advance, you get one free. So rather than discounting, you just add value to it. And that’s a good offer for existing customers. The final thought is when I was running a landscape firm, we leased our vans on a monthly basis. So we didn’t actually own the vans. And there are companies out there that will do a no contract lease, you pay slightly more per month. But you can hand it back if it doesn’t work within a week or so. So maybe having looked at those as good way to start, but it’s not a long term solution. So there’s some ideas to get you going. I always get nervous when Liam zooms in and my face is like this zooming in and my face. What are you doing Liam? The people don’t need to see that. Excellent.

We have a couple of competition related questions. Tasha Sarita sure if I’m butchering your name, she says how do you manage the competition within your industry? When considering starting a small business for local people? Should we be mindful and considerate of those businesses doing something similar, especially in the close knit community?

Now, there’s two ways here is the entrepreneur in me. That’s that’s the way it says they’re responsible for their customers and what they do, and you’re responsible for your customers what you do. The way I’ve worked, I would never I wouldn’t ever go directly to where I was very small to somebody else’s customers, if I knew them, if they’re a small business and what my bottom line, as we grew, we did. We went to other companies that were the same size as ours. We looked at their Twitter feed and we had a look it was following them. We found out who their clients were, and we approached them direct. We didn’t do anything underhand. We didn’t do anything more every brand that every company does. But in a small community that can be issues with them. But I think your integrity, your honesty, you do what you say Say, we’re clear, you do your business properly. Honestly, I don’t think I like a bit of competition makes us all better. I love competition. I guess my analogy, imagine you were running a race. And there’s like five of you in a row. If you look over the people next to you, when you’re running the race, what happens? You slow down, you fall over, you trip, you stumble, I would say, run your own race. Always be better than you can be focused on what you’re doing and improving it and improving it and improving it. And I’ll tell you what, if you do that, you will be way ahead of everyone else. Just focus on getting your own stuff, your own work your own product better. I probably spend 2% of my time looking at other competition, maybe even 1%, maybe even know that I don’t really bother. I’m just like, how can we make my workshops? The best they can be? And how can I reach all the housing associations? I don’t care whether someone else’s client, I just do what I do. So I do me, they do them? And I’ll forge on no matter what. We have a question from collected the back or comment, question. But

just to add on to that, from my time in BNI, which is Business Network International, there will be about one member of each profession to group work come along with the people. And the thought is a competitor, I don’t want them. And when we sat down, we found that when they talked about their businesses, and definitely Java, they actually had some areas which have overlap. But there are other areas where the specialism and they can actually work together very well, in a small community may find talking to professionals to say, what do you what do I do that you don’t work together? And that happens for custom? Yeah, absolutely.

And in the spirit of working together as same industry, we had this recent pop up where there was a wedding photography, business, wedding cake business, and the like, what do you call them the gifts, the favours business, they’re perfect group to work together because they’re all going for the same customers, but there’s a non compete. So if you can find those people, they are fabulous to work with. My main focus is do what you do, who cares what the rest of the world is doing? Launch your own business, focus on your own stuff, go get customers and do your own stuff. The more time you spend focused on other people, the less time you spend focus on growing, improving, getting to where you want to get to.

Connie’s been in touch Danny came on the mesa an event that we did in April in Tahoe, or she did Pokemon and Pokemon Hey, Danny Pokemon events, she says what’s the best way to approach customers of a local rival or competitor that has recently gone out of business without getting negative responses. She says much of the customer base of our events is fairly loyal to their previous club.

The previous club is gone. If they haven’t got a supplier, someone has to fill the void. Someone does. So if the other company’s gone bust, there’s no reason why you can’t approach them. I would find all their followers on Twitter and send them a message. Like definitely, the one thing I would never do in business I try not to do is slag off the competition. I don’t want to avoid that. I don’t want to do that. So if we can stay positive and say well, like, have you fancy coming to this? Do you want to come to that and chat to them? Find them in the communities, we can do it positively that will work. What we don’t want to say is well, they were rubbish Anyway, come to our events that’s going to offend people and create a bad bus. We had some of our customers would ask us what we thought other competitors. And inside our thing, awful things about sometimes I knew that they didn’t do the job properly. I knew that they were thorough. I knew they cut corners. I would never ever say because once you start down that road, it’s just the wrong thing to do. I say they’re running a business too. You can see what they can do. We’re running our business you can see what we can do. It’s up to you to choose and they try and get you to you know to say stuff about whatever wish they did this. It’s up to them what they do. I do my thing and I do it like this. So never ever slack off. Ever. Golden Rule. Yes. And Danny play it’d be lovely to see you popping. Awesome.

We have a few from last time.

On the internet,

internet, you can tell Alan’s over 30 Because he says the title The Internet.

Maria has been running her business for three years around her full time job. She’s got a Facebook page, Etsy and new Monday. You’re not in direct competition with Etsy Oh. She says she’s making very few sales, any tips, she makes glass suncatchers and gemstone jewellery,

cos suncatchers, and gemstone jewellery tips for saints, the first thing I would do is look at what has sold. So see the thing that has sold and then look at the type of person who’s bought. And think are those two things. This is the information I’ve got at the moment, that’s real. This person will this, this person bought this. So like my best sellers, and the types of people that are trying to research and understand why they’ve bought. So I look at the type of profile when I find them on Twitter, find them on Facebook, where do they live? What do they do? What their interests? What was it about these products that they liked? And then try and do more of those products, similar ones, see the versions, different colours, whatever it is, that’s clearly that’s resonated with people that try and understand these two people or three people or 10 people that bought, what do they do, they’re gonna try to find other people got similar interests, clone them, just really simple things. It’s one or two people, it’s a start that moves you forward. And I would say as well as the number of people you approach. And I think that’s the big thing. Definitely from Sales Day. It’s the number of people you put the product in front of. So my first question, if it’s not selling is, how many people see your product every day. How many people do ask to buy every single day and I know you’ve got a full time job. But that doesn’t mean you can’t send an email out, you can’t send tweets out. If you’ve asked 200,000 people, if they want to buy your product, and you’ve not got many sales. Well, that tells me one thing. It may be the price, it may be the description. It may be that you’ve asked the wrong 200,000 people and they’re not your market. But first question is, how many people have you reached? How many people have you got your sales message out in front of if you’ve not asked many people, there’s a direct Well, you’ve asked 10 people at the top, you’re lucky if you get one person at the bottom of the sales one. So question one, how many people then if you’ve approached everyone, then we need to look at pricing? Do we need to increase the price to get more sales. A lot of new entrepreneurs charge too little for what they’re doing. And in the UK, there is a massive belief, you get what you pay for. And it’s ingrained into us. My mom always said buy cheap, buy twice. And you these sayings are ingrained into us. I always remember this incredible guy we met in Colorado, his name was Ted and amazing white bear giant guy. And he was selling writing guides. And it was a guide How to be a creative writer. How much do you think his writing guides were? Two bucks $2 It’s like one pound 40? When you see that, like what do you think my first reaction was to they’re so cheap. Can’t be any good. Like, and actually, I would prefer to pay more to get the best because my time is valuable. And I’m making this judgement without even knowing if it’s good. So sometimes, like I’m sure you’ve done this in supermarkets, you go in and there’s all the wine, and you I don’t want a four pound bottle, the seven pound bottle will be better. How do you know? Have you done the blindfold taste test? You just think because it’s worth more, it’s more is better. So actually, sometimes with new entrepreneurs, what we found is I need to get you to double your price. So how many people have you reached? What’s your price? And then how good are your pictures and your marketing material? And actually we need to analyse all this stuff. So maybe you can like like stickers, a link to your website sticker some details. We’ll have a look at it in the comments. You actually need to sort of go through this step by step to analyse, uncover what’s actually happening with the business,

come back and say she has 31,000 followers on Instagram

31,000 followers. That’s an incredible number. When was the last time you asked them to buy? And did you directly ask them? How many direct messages have you sent? How many likes do you get? Do you reply to all the comments? Like it sounds like we’ve got a fabulous first step in the number of people. My thing is how direct are we been? How direct can we be? And if you don’t ask, you don’t get and it’s great to post pictures of stuff and get likes. But that not put cash in your pocket? We have a question from the room.

So going back to what you’re saying is, you should double what your we think you’re worth. So say I was charging 80 pounds as a personal trainer for one hour session. I’d say I’ve in the last two weeks, I’ve been getting in contact with people directly ask them, they’ve said you’re too expensive. So how do I? Because I know that I’m likely to commit an hour? But how do I get them to believe that just by talking to her,

you’d have to look at who you’re speaking to. So are they the right people to ask? Have they got that much money to spend? My personal training is that it’s a lot of money to spend on personal training is for me, but not to people I know. So people you know, in my neighbourhood or the neighbour next door, there’s a lot of money there, they will be more interested in it, I wouldn’t necessarily say it’s possible, you’re asking the wrong people. Because it’s a premium service is a premium price. I’ve read things that you know, don’t have a personal trainer, if they cost less than 50 pounds an hour. That’s exactly what Alan says, is expensive. We think it’s good. But you’ve also got to look at what cash people have got to spend on certain things. So I think it’s about who you’re talking to. And maybe tuning that and looking at your market. I would add one little bit to that the most expensive personal trainer I’ve come across. There’s a guy in London who does personal training for entrepreneurs that are growing businesses, people who are incredibly busy, busy, and earn a lot of money. He has eight clients. That’s the maximum he will take any one point. And he does it on a yearly basis. How much do you think he charges to be your personal trainer for a year? 40 grand. So there’s anyone, everyone from someone who charges 40 grand wait clients, you can do the maths, all the way down to people who are charging 10 pounds an hour, and they can’t get people to sign up. There’s massive clues in that. And if someone’s saying it’s too expensive, it’s rarely the price. It’s the fact they don’t see value in what they’re getting back. So if we can show them what the actual value is, like, can you get twice the results that a 40 pound an hour person gets? And can we show that that works? And what happens? And can we persuade them of the value? There’s a real value bit. And if the person struggles to pay 10 pounds an hour for something, they’re never going to pay 80 But a really wealthy person 80 pounds an hour? Yeah, it’s nothing. paying to have the best for someone who’s got a very successful business. They’d rather spend more to have the absolute best. So it does depend who you’re marketing to. We have a question from Katie, I had an idea. But we had an idea.

Sorry, personal trainer. praising you could take a risk and have like fees based on when you get results or not for what for like the first client just to get your foot in the door. And then you’ve got that case, but you can use to prove that it works to other clients. Example, just say like, you’ll do it for free, or for a reduced price for the person, no money back, like 90 day guarantee or your money back. You know, if you don’t lose the however many stones they want to lose. You have your money back, something like that. And then it takes away the risk for them for results

based so you could do on body fat percentage. So you measure them and week one, and you measured them at the end on two months. If we hit this, then you pay the full amount that will motivate you to work them out. But yeah, results based is very interesting. And taking away that risk of committing can help. Can Help. Cool. We’re going to be doing pricing on Friday as well. So we will do way more on pricing. Awesome. So it’s 219 like pretty much we’ve overrun on the q&a. Were there any more line that we Okay, everyone’s Alright. Perfect. So we’re gonna wrap up the q&a. Katie, do you have any closing comments? Oh, thanks very much Facebook. That was the first one I’ve ever done. I was brilliant. I can’t wait to do the next one. Excellent. So we will be back again on the Facebook live in two weeks time. So we do one every two weeks on the Friday. So like Maidstone Thursday, Thursday. Thank you. It’s on Thursday. Don’t listen to our Thursday two weeks time. So if you’ve gone out there and tried everything we’ve said come back in two weeks time and you can quizzes online and will help you and answer questions. People on Facebook if you want to find this go to pop up business school dot code UK forward slash events You can see all our upcoming events will be in Westminster coming up. We’ve got one in salt ash in Cornwall then we’re going to Bolton and Wigan plus Namibia. If you’re in Africa, come along. We’ll see you there. So we’ve got all those events coming up. Make sure you come along. Thank you for tuning in. Goodbye.