There are many sites out there that offer free or cheap “build your own” websites, but they often come with hidden catches and costs, and while they can be simple enough to use that you can build yourself a functional website, there are a few things to consider before going down the low cost route …
- Is it really free? Do you have to upgrade to get “premium” features, like using your own domain name?
- Can you really make it look as good as a professional? A poorly put together site with any mistakes can put potential clients off at the first hurdle …
- You are never completely in control of your own site when it is built using one of these free / cheap online services
- If you are paying a monthly fee indefinitely, you will eventually overtake the cost of having a professional site built … and keep paying
- But the most important question is … How long will it take you to build … and how much is your time worth?
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine’s unpaid results – often referred to as “natural,” “organic,” or “earned” results.
It’s all very well having a lovely new website, however the next major hurdle is getting people to visit it! Obviously standard marketing and advertising will help here, however search engine optimisation is extremely important for ensuring your website shows up in the search engines when people are looking for a business like yours. This is called “natural search” and includes the list of results you get in a search engine whenever you type in a keyword or query – not the paid ads that appear at the top and side of the page (although I can help you with paid advertising, too!). SEO is a very specialised field, and is not inherent to all websites or website designers, in fact I have been approached by other website designers in the past to assist with their own websites. There are lots of tried and tested ways to help get you ranking, and with the right person analysing your site, researching your market and putting these methods into practice, you are more likely to start ranking quickly.
Virtual Business Support
A Virtual Assistant is a business support professional that works remotely to undertake a variety of tasks to assist you in the smooth running of your business.
Perhaps you are just starting up your own business, while still trying to hold down a full time job, and need someone to be on hand to answer phonecalls, emails and deal with general day to day administration.
Perhaps you have an established business and would like to outsource some of the admin you currently do yourself. Maybe you’re looking for somebody to do your accounting, assist with some research, help with P.R and marketing, but don’t have enough work for a full or part time employee. A Virtual Assistant can step in to help with practically any business task that doesn’t require physical presence in your office, and while many people can’t quite fathom how a “virtual” employee can possibly be the lifeline they need, once they try it, they find it to be an incredibly cost and time effective way to work!
The kind of work that a Virtual Assistant does is the important, but rather time-consuming and joyless aspect of running a business … you know it needs to be done, however you want to be out there, doing what you do best, selling your business and making money. Think about how much your time is worth – whether it would be time better spent on earning more money, or personal time that you could begin to re-claim – paying someone else to keep on top of your admin can work out to be more than cost effective.
And if you’re trying to weight up the benefits of a Virtual Assistant over an “in-house” employee, then consider this … with a VA you only pay for the time you need, and there are none of the costs associated with permanent staff or even temporary staff working on your premises. You don’t have to provide a workstation, equipment, support, pension, deal with payroll (including those costly N.I. contributions) or worry about health & safety aspects. On top of that, you don’t have to pay for breaks, sick time, holidays, uniform / specialised clothing.
A V.A. is used to knuckling down and getting things done, and can usually complete standard tasks in a fraction of the time of your usual office administrator, so once you’ve factored in all the above, the “water cooler chatting”, general faffing and Facebooking, the V.A. who costs more per hour might just work out cheaper!
A Virtual Assistant can also be of great help to larger organisations as an emergency stand-in, to cover sick time, maternity leave, holidays or even just as an extra pair of virtual hands during a busy period.
If you need any kind of assistance, but are not sure if the virtual kind will work for you, then please do get in touch and I will be happy to go through all your requirements.
SMM (Social Media Marketing)
Social media marketing is the process of gaining website traffic or attention through social media sites. Social media marketing programs usually center on efforts to create content that attracts attention and encourages readers to share it across their social networks.
Like a website is now an integral part of running a business, so is a social media presence. Most people have a personal account on at least one of the main platforms, but setting up a business page, and using it strategically in order to gain exposure and traffic back to your website isn’t quite so easy. Like with any kind of marketing, having the advice of a professional can make or break a campaign.
There are different levels of assistance I can give with social media marketing.
The first is that I can research your specific business and industry and provide you with a bespoke toolkit with step by step instructions on how to successfully set up and run your social media accounts. This would be a one-off cost.
The second, is that I can effectively run your social media campaigns for you, monitoring your accounts, interacting with your followers, creating strategic posts in order to encourage likes, shares and commentary and then reporting back on a weekly basis on your activity and successes. Regular monitoring and reporting is vital to the continuing success of any marketing campaign. This would be an ongoing monthly cost.
Or we could meet somewhere in the middle. You run your own campaigns, but I monitor and report, giving my insights and recommendations for moving forward.
Whatever your requirements – or if you’re not really sure what you need at present! – please do get in touch and we can discuss further.
As part of the work I do with digital agencies, the collection and presentation of data has become extremely important. I have worked on campaigns for large, household-name brands collecting data from various sources, including:
Crimson Hexagon sentiment monitoring
This data is usually collected on a weekly basis (to provide both an ongoing weekly and monthly report) and presented to the account manager for further analysis. Careful monitoring of trends and patterns in the number of visitors to a website, the number of people liking and interacting with social media and the relationship between these numbers and the preceding weeks’ activity is extremely important for very large companies and brands. Digital agencies need the numbers as a snapshot of activity, however there is not always somebody in the office with the time to build these reports.
I have been collecting data in this way for several years, am highly adept in using most online insights and analysis programmes, and can prepare reports according to your specification and on a regular basis, in line with your requirements. All my work is confidential, and all logins and data are completely secure with me. And I am completely reliable, ensuring your reports are with you at the specified time every week and / or month, without fail.
If you are a digital agency or in-house marketing team looking to outsource data gathering and reporting, then please do get in touch to discuss your requirements.
Are you interested in:
- Graphic Design
This is not really my wheelhouse, but I’m happy to recommend the very talented Rob Wagstaff, who can do all this and more! Either visit his website direct at https://www.robertwagstaff.co.uk/ or drop me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll put you in touch.