Applying Lean and MVPs to Web Development

Applying Lean and MVPs to Web Development

When you are launching a new company, or product, or brand, it’s important that you like it. But it’s really really important that you have customers who like it. 

A business without sales, has a hard time sticking around. So while your idea may be great, and you have a passion and a vision for it  If you haven’t tested it you really have no idea if it will sell. Lean Startup philosophy uses a technique called Minimum Viable Product (MVP) where you create a website to sell or pre-sell an idea that doesn’t exist in physical form to gather data about how the idea or product will perform in the market place. . Here are some keys to ensuring your MVP is a success. 

Build a Website  (It should say who you are, describe the benefit, include illustrations and diagrams, videos)

Incorporate E-Commerce (It’s not enough to just track visits, you want to know who will  buy in)

Build A Marketing Strategy (SEO, Digital Advertising, Email Campaign, A/B testing)

Track Your Data (analytics, tracking, CRM)

Manage Expectations (communicate how/when your product/services will be delivered)

Setting up lean and MVPs (minimum viable product) in your website can be a great way to test new language and marketing with your audience and gather feedback, so that you can have more conclusive data before investing the big funds in your messaging and marketing.

As a design agency, we specialize in brand communications, and we get especially jazzed about digital platforms. We start by understanding who our clients are, and creating colors, logos, fonts, and styles that express this identity within a snap-judgment second of web scrolling. We also think strategically. Aside from visual strategy, we work with expert copywriters to ensure that content is relevant and engaging, and we talk about all of the tiered goals so that we know what should be built and implemented now, and what we want to build and implement in the future after some user feedback. 

Some advantages that come with leaning into a tiered web approach could be more clearly identifying your target audience and their pain points, understanding how they use the website and how they want to use the product, understanding your direct and indirect competitors, and learning what to highlight so that you are differentiated from the competition.

Ready to get started? Schedule a complimentary consultation. 

Brand Brag:

One great example of an MVP site is Groupon. When Groupon first launched, this was a brand new concept- digital coupons. They started with a simple WordPress site, and used downloadable PDFs as the groupons. Once they proved a desire and made some revenue, they stepped up their game, and now have a net worth of 0.69billion dollars. 

Likes, Comments, and Retweets- Oh My! How to Leverage Your Social Media in 2021

Likes, Comments, and Retweets- Oh My! How to Leverage Your Social Media in 2021

Now that social media has been around for more than 15 years it is no surprise that marketing and branding endeavors have taken a digital turn. Picking up our phones is becoming an action driven by our subconscious. Kids grow up understanding how to like, comment, and subscribe, without even being taught. Senior citizens, people who grew up in an era where smartphones were only written about in sci-fi novels and seen in bond movies, are even more tech savvy, creating  their own profiles on the social media platforms from Instagram to SnapChat. We can thank the pandemic for that. 

For business owners, social media is a powerful tool that acts as a gateway between your company and your consumers. Social media is a fantastic way to build relationships with them and create a strong customer base that can last the test of time. Whether you are starting a company or have been at one for forty years, odds are that you are using or have used social media to promote your business in one form or another. Here we’ve gathered five new ways that you can leverage it in 2021. 

1) Personal brand 

Now that social media has entered its adolescent phase the landscape looks a little bit different. What is the main difference? Personal brands. The ability to connect with anyone anywhere has given rise to the social celebrity. It is now normal, even encouraged for you to market your own individual work and ideas. Not only does it create professional opportunities to increase your visibility and sell your services, many platforms have developed systems to track your engagement and profit from it.  In addition, businesses are now reaching out to individuals with parallel brand ideals and an active following — we call them influencers — to promote their products and their brands. Side hustle anyone? 

2) Feedback

Social media has created a world where companies have a direct line to thier customers. Whether your campaign was a like, love, or a continuous scroll of comments, you’re sure to  hear about it from the people that follow you and the people that don’t. Want to leverage that feedback? Get ahead of it. Ask your audience for thoughts on your brand, product ideas or marketing campaigns. Check the metrics and see which posts are getting the most engagement then craft your social strategy accordingly. 

3) Social movements 

The power of social media hit its stride in 2020 as the pandemic forced mobility limitations and both businesses and individuals experienced the border-free world of virtual tradeshows, live stream concerts, and a new surplus of time to sit and scroll.  Although businesses in the U.S. have been steadily shifting to consumer driven sales since the “Coke is it” debacle of the 80s, social media has provided a platform for individuals to speak out in large numbers with complete anonymity. Individuals are now holding businesses accountable to both their core values and their ability to drive widespread change. We are now seeing marketing executives from Audi produce the “Daughters” Ad in response to the Me Too movement, and Jake from State Farm being cast as a Black man in response to the Black Lives Matter movement. Whether it’s the plus sized mannequins at Dick’s Sporting Goods or deciding to no longer carry the controversial illustrations of the beloved Dr. Seuss. Businesses now have a responsibility to show their customers what they stand for.  

4) Shop Now!  

Since Facebook went public a great deal of time and resources has gone into making social media profitable. Implementing technology such as Facebook Marketplace or the Shop Now! feature on instagram has created an entirely new avenue for businesses to leverage social media to maximize their visibility and profits.  Take my friend Mollie for example. She created an Instagram account solely for the canvases that she creates. People would leave a comment in the comment section ‘claiming’ the canvas that they wanted to buy, and then Mollie would mail the canvas that she created for you. It was just an activity that she picked up for the summer, yet every single canvas sold. And at a solid rate too! In addition to selling your talents, companies now have the ability to advertise products that customers can purchase right through the social media platform itself eliminating the need for a costly e-commerce site. 

Social media isn’t going anywhere, so utilize these tips and tricks to better understand it in 2021. 


Wish You Could Clone Yourself? 3 Places to Automate

Wish You Could Clone Yourself? 3 Places to Automate

As business owners, we’ve all had that fun challenge of learning to scale. How can we increase our revenue, knowing we can’t increase ourselves. When time, resources, and accessibility are limited, it can be difficult to scale without substantially increasing cost. Automation is a great way to bring in some recurring revenue so that your business can continue to make money, even when you take time off.1 ) Automate your customer relationships. Relationship marketing continues to be of the most importance. Word of mouth is still the number one referral. It can feel daunting to keep in touch with all of your customers while trying to make new customers. You can automate this. By using tools like email marketing, social scheduling, content planning, and a CRM system, you can keep track of your customers, and contact them automatically at the necessary times without even stepping foot into your office.

2 ) Automate your sales. It is easier to scale products than people. If you are looking for a way to automate your sales, consider creating a product line. This can be something simple like a digital book, or digital course, or branded material goods. By creating a product line, you are allowing income to continue coming into your business, even when you take a vacation.

3 ) Automate your processes. Instead of starting from scratch with each new customer, automate your processes. Create a sales funnel and think about what you want your customers to experience, from the first time they hear about you to years after purchasing. You can use things like landing pages and digital ads to bring people in, emails and social messages to stay in touch, and digitized onboarding and offboarding processes to reduce the amount of work with each new interaction. If you are a service-based company, there are many online platforms that offer digitized contracts and invoicing so your clients can sign and pay immediately online. If you’re product-based, consider a service like Shopify that can help you manage e-commerce online.

Whether you choose one or all three of these options, automation can make your business, and your life, run much more smoothly and profitably.

Would you like to automate your business? We’d be happy to help. Schedule a complimentary 30 min consultation call with us here.