A new business owner and I were talking the other day. She shared that she’s been struggling a bit lately not being sure where to start with everything now that she’s shifted gears in her business. Funny enough, a second person mentioned the same thing a few days later!
Making the Shift
When you’re shifting from side hustle to fill time gig some things on your website will need to change to reflect what you’re now offering. Many shift more than just the hours they are working when they invest full time hours in the businesses, but some don’t realize it when they do. These two ladies did, so they’re starting out realizing changes need to take place.
Just like you did some serious soul searching when your employment status changed, it’s a good idea to also pause to take inventory of what you have, what you need, and what needs to take place within your business to take care of those needs.
The two people I talked with both said they know they need clients, need a website and need a calendar. Their current websites don’t quite reflect what they’re focusing on now, but some content does speak to what they offer.
They both said they aren’t sure where to start. They aren’t sure what to tackle first.
I’m going to suggest they don’t start with getting a new website or setting up a calendar. At least, not at first.
Start with relationships.
I don’t mean the typical go to a meeting and be overwhelmed when you walk into a room full of 50 people dressed in business suits holding their cards ready to pounce on you with their 30 second pitch.
I mean forming relationships with others who serve the same people you want to serve but in different capacities. Form relationships with people who may be able to send clients your way, but who you may also be able to refer people to. Then reach out to network with people who may be ideal clients, but not with the intention of selling. That has a tendency to come across as tacky. Take a bit of time to be curious about them and their business.
It helps when building these relationships if you know what you do, who you want to serve and how you want to serve them, of course. Knowing your ideal client inside and out to know what they need as they perceive it and what they actually need definitely helps when you’re talking to others about what you do! Be able to clearly share this in a few succinct sentences will help the person you are talking to refer people to you more easily or to help them realize they need to work with you!
Set up a Calendar
Then turn your attention to setting up a simple calendar system so those new connections can hop on a call with you to see if they are a good fit to work with you or to talk about how you can refer people to each other.
Most online booking calendar options typically allow a few lines of text to share who you are and what you do so contacts know its your calendar when they land on it.
Review Your Website
I feel like as a website designer you might have expected me to list this as your first step. But you might not necessarily need a completely new brand and website right off the bat.
Review your site. You may be able to delete pages that speak to services you no longer provide, or alter your services page to include what you now offer.
Put it on your calendar to revisit your website after you’ve settled into your offers and have identified your ideal client. I also advise new entrepreneurs to put up a simple site while they’re narrowing in on their niche, so I’m not singling you out for shifting! So many people make several subtle shifts in their business, which causes a lot of website altering that could be avoided had they waited a few more months before investing in a full website.
A simple site may be all that’s needed for now if you’ve completely shifted gears from your old offers. It might not work for you long-term. Creating a site that shares your basic services along with contact information (or link to your calendar) may be just the right-sized website for you. You can always grow your site once you’ve zeroed in on your packages and price points.
For now having a place to send referrals to that has your basic information is what’s important. Bonus if that place looks professional and reflects the quality of the prices you are charging your clients. Once you have the rest in place you can work on creating content that speaks to them.
Where are you in your business journey? Have you been wondering what you need in place to get started?
Are you at the point where you know you need a website that looks as valuable as your offerings are to your clients?
Sometimes we are so close to our business that we can’t see what needs to be done next to move the needle forward. If you’ve made a shift in your business, or are about to make a shift and want to get clarity on what to do first, what to do next and how to stand out from the crowd, check out The Brand Focus. This can give you a plan to move forward, beyond setting up a calendar or reviewing your website to share your offers.