Updated: May 10, 2021
Here are the quick key tools to kick things off: Business Growth Starter Pack
To get your business off the ground, you need to be easily accessible, easily found, and your brand needs to look consistent everywhere. That means you need the right tools so your clients can continuously connect with your brand (AKA - You!) anytime and anywhere. I've been in digital marketing for 10+ years and I've built multiple websites and brands from the ground up, so I get asked ALL THE TIME, where to start. So let's GO. This blog has 3 sections!
5 Best Practices for Building your Brand
1. Your name is your brand.
If you're the CEO/coach/yogi/trainer/FACE of your brand, then I highly recommend that your website domain, social handles, etc. be or include your name. Your name is your brand.
Even if you have another company/entity with it's own name, it’s a good idea to buy your name’s domain. What if someone else has already bought the website domain with your name? Have you checked? Go ahead and check now. . . I'll wait. :)
Buying your name's domain also future-proofs you to branch off into other business lines. Let's say you sell your company/brand in 2 years or want to diversify. Owning your name's domain gives you options. 2. Consistency Everywhere!
Your website domain, social handles, and email address should match. This may require you to change some of your social handles. Better now, than later! Embrace it, step into your brand! Good Website: www.kateamberyoga.com IG: kate.amber.yoga
IG: Yogagoddess42 (though I do like this vibe!) Your social profile images should also match! If they don't, go change them right now.
People need to be able to jump from your website to your IG and easily know that this is you!
Anywhere your potential clients, followers, and (honestly) friends go - there should be no guessing that this is your thing.
Protip: Pick out 2-3 brand colors and only use those on your website. Make sure the colors complement the look and feel of your brand (i.e. if you're a yoga instructor for people with trauma maybe you pick calming softer colors.)
3. Have a clear mission.
If you want to help people get fit, kick addition, calm their mind - whatever it is, get SUPER clear on your mission.
Write it down.
Put it everywhere. Have it front and center on your website and social bios. Talk about it in your stories. Give updates on your mission. It should be everywhere you show up so that your brand is telling your story for you. If you don't know your "WHY"/ your mission / why you're moving in this direction, then it's time to have a heart-to-heart conversation with yourself.
Here are short, clear, 1-sentence tag lines: 1. Yoga that plants trees (hmmm looks familiar!)
2. Meditation for new moms in San Francisco
3. Healing Familial Trauma through Breathwork 4. Just START.
It doesn’t matter if you can’t do all of these right now. Don’t wait until next week, just START. It will not be perfect right away - and now that we know that, we don't have that pressure anymore!
When I first launched my website, it was 3 pages, links were broken, and I used all stock photography because I didn't have my own. If you wait, until it's "just right", you're going to miss out on clients and valuable learnings. Just put it out there, and you'll optimize it with time. 5. Be Authentic
Come as you are.
Show up human.
People can feel the difference, so just be your awesome self! :)
Here's one of my most engaged post where I share a genuine, personal story and from the feedback and messages I got, it resonated with many different types of humans.
So be REAL.
Tools for Creating Social Media/Website Content
"Don’t use social media to impress people, use it to help them." - Neil Patel, Marketing Guru
Starting with this quote, because I believe it's an important message to keep top of mind.
1. Small Handheld Tripod with wireless remote
I bring mine with me to the beach and on nature walks, just in case!
Pro-tip: If you use IOS, you can also use your smartwatch to trigger videos and take pictures through your iPhone from the watch.
2. Gimble Phone Stabilizer with Selfie Stick Seriously one of my favorite tools when I'm recording in action/moving. It's a game-changer and makes your videos look PRO. 3. Preset Pack for Photo Editing
This is a must-have for a consistent look and feel across your website and social feeds. Use them on ALL your photos. It's a super-easy one-tap to edit. You can get my GLOW Lightroom Presets for Mobile here.
Recall that consistency is important for building your brand! It also creates engaging, conversation-starting images!
4. Download the Lightroom App Price: Free
Another must-have. Get this anywhere you download your apps. The Lightroom app houses your presets (above) so you can easily edit photos with one-tap.
Trust me on this one, you'll spend <1m editing and you'll look like a pro.
5. O-Ring Light Price: $36.99
For speaking virtually, Youtube videos, or anytime you want to look extra fancy. I don't use one because my content isn't heavy on face-time - otherwise, I probably would!
5. Canva to design virtually anything
You know those beautiful inspirational quotes people post with colored backgrounds and cool font. You can make these in under <1 minute with Canva. It's drag and drop, super easy, your parents could do it.
Remember your brand colors here! (whip out those hex codes!)
6. Splice App for Video Editing
If you're doing quick video edits on your phone - this is the app you need.
This is how I make fun video yoga tutorials for Instagram.
Get this wherever you get your apps!
Tools to Build an AWESOME Website
1. Purchase your website Domain
PAUSE - this is a big one!
What will your brand and business be in 5 years, in 10 years? Your domain is critical positioning for your brand’s growth. So think about it, then think again, then make the decision. You may not want to get a domain that is, for example, www.kateamberyoga.com, when your long term direction is to expand into teaching salsa lessons or vegetarian food recipes. This is exactly why you can’t go wrong with your name as a domain - you can go anywhere with it. Your name is your brand!
Purchase your Domain:
Make sure your domains and social handles match for. . . (say it with me). . . Consistency!
Protip: Keep your domain readable and short-ish (15 characters max, not including the www. or .com).
2. Create your own Drag-and-Drop Website
Do not be overwhelmed by creating a website. You really only need 1 page to launch: A homepage with one clear line on what you do and a form to intake clients. That's IT!
If you bought a domain, and signed up for Wix/Squarespace, you could have your beautiful homepage created in <1 hour. I created this entire site in <3 hours when I first started.
Again, don’t hesitate or overthink this one, start small knowing you'll add to it soon.
To enable purchasing from your website - $26/month - charge $0.30 transaction fee
To enable purchasing from your website - ~$30/month depending on package - charges 3% transaction fee
Other important pages for your website:
Intake form for new clients
About You section - trust me, people will read it before they become a client. Include a picture of yourself! People want to know who you are and what you stand for.
Your location - If you're not 100% virtual, then location matters to build community
Instagram, FB, Twitter Feed - if you’re active, meaning posting at least 2x a week, then put up your feed. I recommend only having 1 feed on your website or it could become overwhelming.
Email Subscribe form - this is a 1-field form, where people can simply sign up to hear from you. It normally takes 7-8 touches before someone becomes a client so collecting emails is a great way to stay top of mind and provide value to them.
Protip: Once your website is up, put your site in ALL YOUR SOCIAL BIOS. Always drive traffic to your website. Always.
3. Create your Logo
This is a fun one and can take <2 minutes.
4. Create your Favicon
Favicon? What's that?!
This is the icon used on your tab! If you’re like me, you have 20 tabs open and the favicon helps easily identify and come BACK to your website. It also reinforces your brand.
5. Get a Linktree
Price: Free - $6 (depending)
A linktree is great when you have multiple pages you wish to direct traffic to from your social page. You'll want to link to your top blogs, your order/client page, etc. 6. Stock Images to start you off
Price: Free Downloads
Price: Free Downloads
These can kick off the imagery on your website (it's what I did!) but you'll eventually replace these with your original content that's in line with your brand.