This post is not some sort of cheap attempt to get a measly few more views on my site from this community. I genuinely want your ideas on my situation.
My situation (A new beginning):
I just started an IT business a few months ago on the Gold Coast (IT Support, Web design, Computer repair, Computer sales etc). I went all out and QUIT MY JOB to make this happen. Most of my available funds and time have gone in to equipment, general setup (server, web site, some starter clients). I have a couple of refered clients (from friends and family) but not nearly enough to cover my old wage as an Network Administrator.
Dilemma (The news):
Soon after Quitting my job to start this business I found out I AM GOING TO BE A DAD! Great news...! I am ecstatic! but fearful at the same time because of my situation. My wife will soon be unable to work and I will need to support the family myself. Doing the sums, I figure that unless my business makes an extra 10k in the next 2 months (to cover some financing etc) I will have to give up on the Business and look for work. That would not be a good option as it is hard to find a good salary in IT on the Gold Coast to cover living expenses for Me, My wife, My Mother in-law (living with us) and a new born due in in a few months.
So you see, my business MUST WORK! I have no other option. About 5 - 10 new steady clients would do it, but how?!
Done so far:
Here are some of the things I have done so far (Please be honest with your criticism on these, I need to know what to change):
*Registered a business name "DO IT Solutions" (Direct & Online IT Solutions)
*Purchased a 1300 number (cheesy I know)
*Created a dot com dot au website (I hope I am allowed to put this:)
*Created a "DOITSolutions" a social site page with a custom welcome page using FBML
*Created a twitter account
*Linked the special offers on my web site to an RSS feed which updates a social site and Twitter
*Offered a discount for a social site fans (to help raise the amount of fans that will in tern receive my specials via a social site as listed, there are 47 at the moment I think, just friends of mine)
*Added links from the front page of my web site to become a a social site fan or follow on twitter
*Listed with online advertising on Truelocal (com au site) for $300 / month, considering cancelling it as only getting about 1 view per day and no calls :(
*Listed with many other free online advertising sites and some cheaper paid ones (Clickfind, dlook etc)
So far I just haven't managed to penetrate the market enough.
Please help me think of ideas:
1) Brochure, local handout:
I am thinking of creating a brochure. One side with an IT Support special and the other side with a Web design special. Maybe a cheap monthly payment plan for a new website (eg. $70 - 80 / month, maybe including domain registration and web hosting or similar) instead of reducing my upfront amount web site amount. And then delivering it to my local businesses. I would hate being one of those annoying people that drop and to give you a brochure unannounced, but I am that determined to make this work.
Please, any ideas will help. Share a story about a a similar experience, or a possible idea for a plan. Any input would be much appreciated! :)
Ok, I removed the bits that broke the rules...as you clearly skipped them when you signed up (please take 2 minutes to read them next time you're on).
About 4.5 years ago, I left my job - my kids were only 3 and 4 at the time, so not on the way, but daycare is expensive where we lived at the time, trust me.
What you're doing wrong: marketing. Sorry, but, unless you have a list of reputable clients...why would a strange company hire you? What you need to do is leverage the network you have.
Those people know you, trust you and can assist you a great deal...but, they may not unless you either offer a discount to them for referrals or if you give them a percentage of new business you acquire.
Also, in terms of freelancing...well, you should become familiar with elance and similar sites that offer contract work that you can bid on. Those systems can be good, if you're looking for work.
Craigslist or similar is a good one to find contract, temporary work. etc.
Last, before you quit your job, there must have been a reason you quit: eg, you thought companies hired consultants in your field. Did you make a prospect list? Do you know why they hire, what the most important factors are when they make decisions of vendor A vs vendor B? That's a really good one to spend a day or two on, to make sure your value proposition is in line with the client's biggest pain areas. Good luck.
You could actually go and have meetings with businesses and see if they want to use your business. Don't just wait for people to come to you- push yourself in their face.What is going on with american econemy?
Thanks for the answers so far.
Also, thanks for fixing up my original post to allow it in here, much appreciated. :)
I will need to ponder these things before tackling the next marketing project. Your ideas and advice have been very helpful so far, keep them comming. This is great :)
Michael A.do I have to go to collage to work at ebay??
I would for sure stop paying $300 dollars a month for an advertising agency that only gets you one view per day...thats a little ridiculous...
I hope everything works out for you and your family and the new baby...congrats by the way:)What trucking school can a felon go to