Video: Why I Restarted My Business

Video: Why I Restarted My Business

Kimberly Inez Mays

Kimberly Inez Mays

Online Brand Strategist, Founder

With over 10 years of web design and development experience, I help entrepreneurs build and grow their online brands. I love everything tech and can’t wait to help you shine online!

I currently reside in NYC with my 2 selfish cats and I’m addicted to caffeine (which helps with the late night coding). 

Fun fact: My initials are K.I.M 🙂

Should you build your own website?

Should you build your own website?

If you know you need to build your website now, what’s your next step?

As an online band consultant and web designer, I will tell you that you absolutely can build your own website. The question is: should you?

There are numerous products and services out there that will help you build your own website. You don’t need to know any code and you can click, drag, and drop and get a website very quickly. Who wouldn’t love that?

That’s where most entrepreneurs get it wrong.

Your success online is not about getting your website up. It’s about building the right website for your business. No drag-and-drop tool is going to do this for you. Building a successful website is not about implementation, it’s about planning. Planning takes time.

I’ve written a whole blog post about planning your website, but if you want a brief summary, here it is:

  • What exactly do you want your website to do for your business?
  • Who are you trying to attract?
  • What do you want those people to do on your website? How?
  • How will you know if your website is successful?

Planning entails knowing the answers to these questions before you decide on the platform, colors, images or text.

Many website builders will put the ‘cart before the horse’ and force you to use a predefined template or layout. You may be restricted to what you can achieve technically, but there are some benefits to building your own website, if you choose to do so.

When you could build your own website

You can build your own website using Wix, Squarespace, WordPress, or any other platform. What you decide on will be determined by your own comfort level and technical ability. You will need to put the time into researching the best platform for your business. Each has its own learning curve.

Generally speaking, the easier the platform is to use, the less flexibility you have to customize it.

Building your own website might be right for you if:

  • You are very comfortable with technology. (A basic knowledge of HTML helps too)
  • You have at least 40 hours to commit to setting up the site. (Trust me, it takes that long!)
  • You don’t have the budget to hire a designer.
  • You have a solid understanding of how to brand yourself online.
  • You are not easily frustrated.
  • You are a brand new business owner testing the waters.
  • You’ve completed all of your other business tasks and are not delayed by working on your own website.

Or maybe you are a nerd (like me) that really enjoys building websites. 🙂

When you are better off hiring a web designer

Opportunity costs are defined as the opportunities you lose as the result of choosing to do something else. So let me ask you:

How much time have you already spent on your website? What have you given up in order to do it yourself?

If you are like me, you like to be in control. However, there’s freedom in delegating. You will get your time (and sanity) back to do what you do best.

Are you really closed for business because your site’s not live? Luckily that’s an easy problem to solve. Just hire someone and get it off your plate.

You might benefit from a web designer if you:

  • Dislike technology (or spending hours on something you don’t want to do)
  • Haven’t done anything else while working on your website. (No marketing, no client work, nada!)
  • Have a website, but you hate what you’ve built thus far
  • Generally unhappy with the restrictions that website builders impose on you
  • Want to look more legitimate online.
  • Already spent more than 40 hours and you are still stuck!

Or if you are generally just like:

The bottom line

You need to take an assessment of your skill level, the current state of your business, and what you want to achieve. Another added benefit of hiring a web designer is that you get a professional (and objective) assessment of your business. Your designer is your partner in your online success.

Do you want to know what working together could look like? Contact me for a free strategy call. Let’s spend 30 minutes together talking about your website, your online presence, and even your business goals.

I’m waiting to ease your frustration. (Making web design let frustrating since 1998)

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Kimberly Inez Mays

Kimberly Inez Mays

Online Brand Strategist, Founder

With over 10 years of web design and development experience, I help entrepreneurs build and grow their online brands. I love everything tech and can’t wait to help you shine online!

I currently reside in NYC with my 2 selfish cats and I’m addicted to caffeine (which helps with the late night coding). 

Fun fact: My initials are K.I.M 🙂

What comes first: my business or my website?

What comes first: my business or my website?

What comes first? If you are reading this, you likely already have a business or business idea. And among the millions of things you need to do to be an entrepreneur, getting online is one of them.

So at what point do you decide to build your website?

Do you need to be in business first? Or do you need the website to open/grow your business?

The answer is not always so straightforward. It really depends. Every business is different.

When you should focus on your business first

Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither should your website. Implementing a website is easy, but planning for it is harder. You really need to know what it is that you offer, who you serve, and what is it in for your client. You must clearly state the benefit of working with you – and you need to be clear on that yourself.

You can hire anyone to build your website (or do it yourself). But that investment would be better spent actually getting clear about your value proposition, building your business, and attracting your first client.

You might not be ready for a website (yet), if:

  • You are unsure of your ideal client (and you don’t have a niche)
    • If you don’t know who you are speaking to, how can you expect them to buy from you?
    • How do you know what their needs are? How will you communicate the value?
  • You haven’t determined your packages and pricing.
    • If you don’t quite know what you are selling, you will spin your wheels constantly revising your website.
  • You don’t have a plan to promote your business website.
    • No matter how fantastic your website looks, if you are not consistently promoting your business, no one will visit your website. You might get some traffic, but you’ll miss out on getting your ideal clients to your website.
    • Promoting your website consists of: including it on your printed materials, driving traffic to it from social media, producing high-quality blog posts and content, and having other websites link to it.

When you should build your website now

Social media can only take you so far. So when do you know it’s time to actually get a website?

I like to say: When you are fully committed to the business, not the idea of being in business. This means when you have an ideal client and have definitive products and services to offer. The level of time and monetary investment is wasted by the ‘wantrepreneur’. You might not have made a single sale, but if you are now willing to work every day on your business, you are definitely ready for a website.

Here are some of the criteria I look for when I take on new clients:

  • You are ambitious and motivated to make your business successful. (Quitting is not an option)
  • You have an active and engaged presence on social media.
  • You have a real market for your service.
  • People are already interested in buying from you, but you want your website to facilitate you in getting more leads.
  • You have a plan to actively promote your website.

… and if you already have a website …

Your website is never ‘finished’. Your website will need to grow and evolve with your business. The website that you started out with may no longer serve you now.

So how do you know when it’s time to uplevel? It’s simple: When you are getting fewer visitors to your website. When you’ve stopped promoting it due to irrelevancy. When it no longer represents your business in its current state.

This might be a project that you take on yourself as a busy entrepreneur, or this might be a project that you delegate to a professional. When determining your next step online, you need to decide how much time or money you want to invest and really consider your desired result.

In my next blog post, I’m going to talk about the pros and cons of building your own website.

As always, I’m here to talk to you about your next steps.  If you are still stuck trying to figure out what to do, contact me for a strategy call. Let’s spend 30 minutes together talking about your website, your online presence, and even your business goals.

Your website is never 'finished'. Your website will need to grow and evolve with your business. The website that you started out with may no longer serve you now. Click To Tweet

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Kimberly Inez Mays

Kimberly Inez Mays

Online Brand Strategist, Founder

With over 10 years of web design and development experience, I help entrepreneurs build and grow their online brands. I love everything tech and can’t wait to help you shine online!

I currently reside in NYC with my 2 selfish cats and I’m addicted to caffeine (which helps with the late night coding). 

Fun fact: My initials are K.I.M 🙂

Impostor syndrome: 3 ways to identify and defeat it

Impostor syndrome: 3 ways to identify and defeat it

What the heck is impostor syndrome?

Ever feel like no matter what you do, it isn’t enough? Do you often feel unfulfilled with even seemingly significant accomplishments? Do you downplay praise and compliments? You might be suffering from impostor syndrome.

There are many definitions of impostor syndrome, but here is mine:

Impostor syndrome is the insidious condition that prevents us from enjoying nice things by causing us to feel unworthy of receiving them – even if we worked hard for them. It is a dumb fear of being exposed as a fraud because we are not comfortable with our own genius.

Impostor syndrome is not merely a fear of failure – it’s worse than that. It’s the discomfort and eventual numbness to success. But it doesn’t have to be this way. In the video below, I describe 3 ways in which you can identify and overcome impostor syndrome.

1) You are hoarding information

Are you an information hoarder? I wrote an entire blog post about it.  But if you have enrolled in more courses than you have time for, have purchased dozens of ebooks you haven’t read, and have downloaded every freebie that you find – you might be a digital information hoarder. You may feel that there’s a higher level that you need to get to before opening your business. The problem is, you’ll never know ‘enough’ and you aren’t giving yourself credit for what you DO know.

2) You are comparing yourself to other people

It’s normal to compare ourselves to others. I’d be a liar if I said that I didn’t. The issue with impostor syndrome is that the comparisons consume you and you never stop finding new people to make you feel ‘less than’. There needs to be a moment where you realize that you could be an inspiration or a blessing to someone else – if you only put yourself out there and get started.  Impostor syndrome never affords you that opportunity.

3) You are romanticizing the ‘hustle’

What is pleasure without pain, right? Wrong.

Honestly, I have abolished the word ‘hustle’ from my vocabulary and never looked back. We don’t do what we do just for the ‘hustle’. Hustling is just a means to an end. There’s no trophy at the end of life for the person who has hustled the most. There’s no virtue in spinning our wheels and there’s no way to ‘cash out’ on all of your suffering for your due reward. You already deserve success! Yes – you have to work for it, but you really don’t have to hustle for it.

I think that romanticizing the hustle is the worst form of impostor syndrome because it allows us to be okay with ‘not being ok’. (And when did hustle become a positive word anyway?))

Let’s defeat impostor syndrome together!

If you have felt just a little bit better from this blog post and video, then I have done my job. Because I’m not just a web designer, I’m also an entrepreneur and an imperfect human being. If impostor syndrome is preventing you from taking the actions that you need to take, then you have an obligation to overcome it! Know that you are not alone in this.

You aren’t really alone in anything you do in your business and you certainly are NOT an impostor! If you need help with certain things, it doesn’t make you a phony to ask – it makes you smart. And I’d like to help you.

What are you struggling with in your online business? Let me know. Send me an email at Kim @foolishlycreative.com or if you want to go further book a strategy call with me.

Continuously rooting for your success!

I have abolished the word 'hustle' from my vocabulary. We don't do what we do just for the 'hustle'. Hustling is just a means to an end. Click To Tweet

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Kimberly Inez Mays

Kimberly Inez Mays

Online Brand Strategist, Founder

With over 10 years of web design and development experience, I help entrepreneurs build and grow their online brands. I love everything tech and can’t wait to help you shine online!

I currently reside in NYC with my 2 selfish cats and I’m addicted to caffeine (which helps with the late night coding). 

Fun fact: My initials are K.I.M 🙂

10 ways to completely annoy your website’s visitors

10 ways to completely annoy your website’s visitors

Happy opposite day! I’m going to show you my top 10 ways to annoy your visitors … because you might do the opposite and get better results.

Annoying your website’s visitors is easier than you think and you may not even realize that you are doing it. But if you really want to drive away traffic, I have some really neat tips on how to do that.

Without further ado …

1) Increase the time to load the site

Visitors hate this. If you want them to abandon you before they even see your website, do whatever it takes to slow your website down!

This means adding as many photos to a single page as possible. Don’t bother to resize your images, just load them straight from your computer. Add your photos to the top, above all the meaningful text about what you do and who you are. They can wait for that!

As an added bonus: If you want your visitor to be entertained after they’ve waited, automatically play music. After they’ve waited so long for your music/video to load, they’ll appreciate you if you audibly play it without warning.  Or maybe they won’t. Maybe they are in a quiet area like the library, or at work, or at (gasp) church. It’ll scare the bejesus out of them!

A speedy website, along with the strategic use of imagery and content, will only make people stay on your website … don’t fall for it.

2) Make them read paragraphs of text

Don’t make it easy for them to scan your site to understand your business. Create several long paragraphs without headings or images. Your visitor will hate you!

And don’t even think about line breaks. One solid paragraph is just fine. Tell your backstory first, then the names of your kids, followed by your favorite pastimes, and only THEN talk about what you do! Don’t give them any actionable items or next steps. After reading all of that, they’ll need to lie down. Sure, they may never come back, but you can rest assured that you’ve made them tired.

By including descriptive headlines with concise paragraphs explaining what you offer, your ideal client will want to work with you. Be careful.

3) Make your website tacky as hell

Brutalist web design is making a comeback. Follow the trend and choose colors and font sizes that look awful. Get your design inspiration from Craiglist and the “Space Jam” website. (Check it out it, I promise it’s worth it)

Nevermind that you are a professional who sells high-end coaching and consulting services. You want to appear cheap and you want to make your visitor regret ever visiting your website. Clutter it with photos and text – everywhere. Make everything move.

Hurt their eyes. Use red as a background. Experiment with different color texts on multi-colored backgrounds. Provide no contrast.

If you do some thinking and planning before you build your website, it might not look like a hot mess. But a hot mess is what you are going for, so don’t do any planning at all!

4) Include pop-ups on every page

Oh yeah! EVERY page, not just one. This will force them to close your pop-ups over and over and over and over – until they just leave.

Can’t you just imagine the frustration as they reject your persistent pop-ups and try to navigate your site? Can’t you see the furrowed brows? The sighs? The ‘whys’?

You could just limit the pop-up to once a day … but you are looking to piss people off. Don’t limit yourself.

5) Offer no solution

Don’t tell anyone what problem you solve. Instead, focus your website on YOU and YOUR breakthroughs. Your visitor will become so enthralled with your transformative backstory, they automatically give you their money.

Or maybe they won’t relate and will leave. But that’s okay because you aren’t looking for real business anyway.Your website is too show off how awesome you are!

If you actually described your client’s problem and your solution to that problem, they might do business with you. No good!

6) Design for mobile, nah!

Don’t worry about how your website looks on mobile. Seriously?

Look. You don’t have time to make your website look good on mobile. You don’t really use your cell phone to surf the web, so why should your visitors? Make them use a desktop … like you do.

Nevermind that they can’t properly view your website and will likely leave forever. Oh well.

Just whatever you do, don’t optimize your website for mobile devices!

7) Never update it

Because you don’t have time for that either.

Your last blog post was two years ago and it was time-sensitive. Oops! Your posted phone number is out of service. Oops! Your email address has changed. Oops!

And that photo doesn’t even look like you anymore! Remove it and leave a broken image in its place.

If you actually appear like you are in business, you might get some business. But a zombie website is the best way to frustrate people. So let’s go with that!

8) Include nonsensical navigation

Navigation is for suckers! You want to make sure that your visitor is really confused. You want to avoid giving them a clear path on how to find their information that they are looking for.

At the top of your website, make sure that you randomize your pages. Make sure that the content on each page has nothing to do with the page title. People just despise a good bait and switch!

If you really want to get annoying, eliminate the pages that thoroughly describe your services and your value proposition. Providing relevant information really attracts your ideal clients. Don’t.

Instead, go for the element of surprise. Leave them wondering why they even bothered.

9) Have a super long (or ambiguous) URL

When choosing a domain name, make it as long as possible. It’ll prevent more people from directly visiting your website and increase the likelihood of misspellings. Sweet!

Your domain name should also contain hyphens that people will forget to type in. ‘Dashes’ are a cool way to get the domain name you want if the other domain name is already taken. Your visitors will likely end up on someone else’s website.

Lastly, be sure to intentionally misspell words like a middle schooler. If a word ends with S, replace the S with a Z. Because you’ll seem cooler (to yourself at least)

Whatever you do, don’t make it easy for someone to type in and get to your website on the first try!

10) Let your hosting/domain name expire

You didn’t want to pay that bill anyway! Let your website expire until it’s only but a shell of its former self.

Let your domain expire and become available for purchase by anyone who wants it. After all, it’s only your business name. It’s not important anyway.

Don’t renew your hosting either. When someone visits your website, they’ll get nothing that pertains to your business. At least they’ll know that you had a website.

Paying for services to run your business website is responsible. But who wants that?

Umm, yeah … so … don’t annoy people.

I didn’t really mean any of the above, I was being facetious. But I wrote this blog post to make a point.

Many coaches and consultants are making these same mistakes, unintentionally. And it’s a shame because a bad website can hurt a good business. I’m genuinely rooting for every entrepreneur that is reading this.

Please take the time to improve your website. Pick a day this month to see if you are making any of these mistakes. Get feedback on your website.

And if you are still stuck trying to figure out what to do, contact me for a strategy call. Let’s spend 30 minutes together talking about your website, your online presence, and even your business goals.

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Kimberly Inez Mays

Kimberly Inez Mays

Online Brand Strategist, Founder

With over 10 years of web design and development experience, I help entrepreneurs build and grow their online brands. I love everything tech and can’t wait to help you shine online!

I currently reside in NYC with my 2 selfish cats and I’m addicted to caffeine (which helps with the late night coding). 

Fun fact: My initials are K.I.M 🙂

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