Harper Alumni Center, Sacramento State University
make more money
time, energy, skill worth more than money coming through the door
design & development skill?
no balance between resources and demand
nobody buys immediately – even if sales cycle is short, they start at top of pipeline
top of the funnel, then have to work down – there’s a buyers journey that takes place, never instantaneous
bidding on a project might take days, weeks, months
meet someone for pizza, ten minutes later they’re a client!
help a client on that journey to keep the pipeline full
there’s work that still needs to be done, is there another project you guys can use me on?
content marketing – anybody read it?
throw darts in a dark room
money trickles in, sometimes more than others, sometimes zero
it’s all unreliable
(bit of a dark art)
An internet advertising model used to direct traffic to websites
Twitter or Facebook – reinforcing the sale after the fact
think or agree to work with you will look at profile to get further confidence in their decision
not reliable for sales
trying to generate business, wildly inconsistent
no equilibrium between resources and demand
no repeatable process that works
Most developers have capacity available – nobody is completely booked.
Desire for making a living while doing interesting work.
Ability – wait five minutes and turn around. You know more than the next person.
repeatable processes that bring more leads to the door
not how I want to spend my day – annoying, but can’t avoid
How many of you have a real specialty? Most Devs: AFAB (funny and sad)
Most successful developers, designers, agencies, have a specific sector or specific segment that they FOCUS in on.
chicken or the egg – the reason they are successful is because they’ve gotten good at something specific so that people think of them for that, and they’ve avoided being in the anything-for-a-buck business.
You don’t call the generalist, you call the specialist.
How many web professionals ($) are there in North America?
500,000 4,000,000 6,000,000
1.5 million attorneys
People call on experts, not generalists
It’s really hard; we have bills to pay, employees to pay, investments to make.
The only way to break out of now is to offer yourself as a specialist:
No one else likes to do migrations. It’s ugly, it’s unfortunate, there’s QA.
They found this place and decided to do this. It’s turned out to be a nice business. They built tools, they built scripts, and it’s worked out well. Is it sexy? Of course not; but they have a growing business.
high traffic sites with deep pockets
Mode Effect – Loves working with non-profits.
refer vs partner
referrers pass you opportunities out of need – closing the loop
Partners pass you opportunities out of want – my client will be thrilled!
recognize your own specialization
being the best in the world (not necessarily the entire world)
Let the “world” grow as you grow.
Start small but be the best. 1st choice.
best clients have in common?
profit well – client you can’t wait to get rid of, but need the revenue
highest margin clients, the work that challenges you?
Amazon Web Services – deploy cloud environment
so highly customized, keeps engineers engaged – client launches live, never hear from again. All margin, no call-ins for support – they’re happy for that.
What are the referrals calling on you for most often?
Listen to what they’re asking for.
Grow My Own Interests
Ecosystem – part where people check out; there’s some work involved
Who provides complimentary services? what will make your work look even better
introduce them to someone who can expand their catalog, then come back to the developer.
Who do you already know, what do you admire about them?
I know this person does good work, can take care of my clients.
Who would you like to know for mutually beneficial relationship?
Never a shortage of people willing to learn what you do, learing to work together.