Make your BIZ + LIFE better and easier, by doing this…

woman in white suit

So… You and me, we’re the independent “march to the beat of our own drum” entrepreneur types…

You’re so independent + tenacious, you probably like to do EVERYTHING yourself—as much as possible. Especially if you’re a solopreneur like me. ;)

I totally get it. I’m a hands-on kind of gal, and I like having control over the details—doing things myself whenever possible, with only a few exceptions.

But I also know that, in order to grow the business + achieve the life we want—it’s essential to hire a professional service provider for certain things—to better leverage our time and resources, not to mention improve our quality of life.

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Why you might not need that re-design, after all…

money treeYou know how it goes…

The business you started with, never stays the same for long. We can’t help it, right? In order to grow and prosper, we have to change, and change we do.

Inevitably, that little seed of a business we started ages ago has morphed into something totally different. Perhaps even BIGGER & MORE AWESOME than anything we could’ve anticipated at the outset!

Uh-oh. Then comes the growing pains, when we realize that the brand we’ve presented thus far, is quickly becoming a liability. [click to continue…]

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excited womanYou know that feeling, when you land on a new website, and you’re instantly intrigued?

Like you just can’t wait to explore + learn more about that person/organization/business, because their home page totally speaks to you?

For me, it feels like finding a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow!

I mean, let’s face it—there are SO MANY businesses out there in any given category, but only a select few of them fit the criteria for what we want/need.

And whenever I find one that’s extra promising (Betty Means Business had me swooning, for example), it’s like—EUREKA! Here is the place I want to be…to explore…to purchase or subscribe…because they did and said all the right things, and had me at “hello”. ;)

Does YOUR website’s home page have that effect on your ideal clientele, when they come for a first look?

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Here’s the thing, about your website…

01 The Solar System PIA10231, mod02It’s like the sun around which all your other planets rotate. If your source of light & warmth isn’t there, or isn’t shining as brightly as it should, the rest of your solar system suffers (like your social media following, networking efforts, and other ways you market yourself to potential customers).

And with all that pressure to make your SUN shine, it totally makes sense that, when it comes to building a great website for your biz, you should invest a little extra time in the planning phase—before you ever lift a finger to install a WordPress theme, or pick up the phone to hire a designer, or start adding pages or blog posts.

After all, you wouldn’t build a home, or a brick-and-mortar office/headquarters for your business without a significant amount of planning and thought, would you? (Don’t worry, planning your website a heckuva lot easier than planning a physical building. Promise!)

The method I’m about to show you is very simple, doesn’t require much time, and yet it goes a long way in helping you get your thoughts together + forcing you to clarify what you’re looking for in the results you want to get from your website, and what your website needs to be like to accomplish them.

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girl on top of worldI’ve heard it said, that becoming an entrepreneur is the quickest path to self-discovery/self-improvement.

And I think it’s absolutely true! We have to know who we are, before we know what it is we’re meant to do & who we’re meant to serve. We have no choice but to build self-discipline, learn how to sell our skills & offerings, and how to communicate well with our customers—in order to succeed.

I’ve struggled with my fair share of those things (lack of discipline, for example), but the ONE I want to talk about today is this: BEING REAL. More specifically, stepping out from behind the mechanical curtain of the internet…to be ourselves, and not behave like a robot or a sales machine.

Why is that so important? [click to continue…]

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woman using her laptopIt’s part 2! Time to get to the meat, of actually making your website more effective. ;)

In my last post, I gave you some things to ponder, in regards to what you actually want to portray—what essential truths you want your tribe to get—on your website.

And, now it’s time to see how your website (in its current state) measures up to those standards, and what you can do to improve both the message you’re sending to your audience AND the effect it will have on them…

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web arrowDo you have the feeling that your website isn’t quite hitting the mark?

Maybe you’re getting a high bounce rate (first-time visitors leaving your site after only viewing one page)… or your subscriber/sales conversion rates are extremely low…or you have a gut feeling that you’re giving off the wrong impression, and you want to fix it—before you lose any more business!

Now, if your business has changed dramatically, or if your website has been a problem from the very beginning, you might need a “complete overhaul” to fix the issues you’re currently experiencing.

But many times, all you need are just a few minor adjustments here and there, to add up to some big payoffs!

If that’s the case for you, then start by first clarifying what your website should be saying to your audience (using the questions below), and then tweak your website so it says just that (more on that next week, in Part 2).

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When it comes to creative pursuits—outside of business—I love arts & crafts (painting, scrapbooking, even jewelry making, to name a few).

And likewise, for entertainment like movies and TV, I tend to go for the fantasy genre most of all…because it’s mind-boggling to see what fantastic worlds can come about, with a heaping dose of unbridled imagination + ingenuity!

Once Upon a Time - Captain HookLast week, I gave you the first half of 14 “biz lessons” gleaned from my favorite TV show, Once Upon a Time. So now, without further ado, we continue the exploration into what can be learned from this conglomeration of fairy-tales-flipped-upside-down-and-inside-out…

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happy 2014Oh, how I love new years!

I love the feeling of officially leaving the old year behind, and taking deliberate steps to create new goals and expectations, along with the plans to reach them, in the new year. It always feels so fresh, like the dawn of a new day, full of possibility. :)

Today is my first official day “back at work” in my business, and it also just so happens that, yesterday, I finally watched the (DVR-recorded) winter finale of my favorite TV show, Once Upon a Time.

Once Upon a Time - Snow WhiteSo when I thought about what sort of cool insights I could share with you—what 14 ideas I could give you for 2014—my mind quickly wandered to this ever-awe-inspiring twist on fairy tales. “What business lessons can we learn from the crazy tangled web of characters, stories, and adventures of Once Upon a Time?”, I wondered…

Turns out there are plenty of insights to be gleaned! If you’re a fan of the show, you’ll get a kick out of them…but even if you have no clue what the heck I’m talking about (maybe you’ve never even heard of Once Upon a Time) you can still appreciate these timeless lessons in business.

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holiday wreath on whiteFirst off, let me just say, this December is flying by way too fast.

This is the first year that I’m putting my foot down and giving myself the entire two weeks of Christmas & New Year’s off (yay!)

All at once, I’ve been trying to wrap-up my biz activities for the year, get in the Christmas spirit (observing the season of Advent + celebrating the birth of the Lord Jesus ♥), AND contain my excitement about all the ideas that are popping up in my head + all the marvelous plans I’m making for 2014. New issues of Designed2Flourish! A brand-new website (coming in April)! And lots of other stuff I haven’t yet decided on!

So in the spirit of all this creative discovery & new idea stuff, and also because this is my last post until January, I’ve made you a gift! [click to continue…]

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