Originally published November 16, 2009 on my original blog, Sales Training 2.0.
I’ve been talking to a number of people recently who fall into a couple of camps
- starting a training firm, or at least hanging out a shingle to be a training firm
- starting life as an IC for a training firm
- starting to represent multiple firms as an IC and wondering how to convey your new multi-faceted message
Some books and articles advise new ICs and business owners to avoid making the time and monetary investment of setting up their own website. I agree in principle because many new entrepreneurs focus on the wrong things when they start their business – especially when it comes to ‘advertising, marketing and promotion.’ However I know that many salespeople lose credibility with their prospects who look to the web to ‘authenticate’ the people selling to them.
I would suggest two options that can work for a new IC – one of which that can also work for a new 1 to 3 person training company.
- LinkedIn. If you fully utilize LinkedIn and create a deep profile – and definitely choose a good vanity URL – you can have a free ‘web page’ to give to clients and prospects in lieu of a full website. See my profile at www.linkedin.com/in/strategy2revenue. I have this URL on my business cards and embedded in my email signature line.
- WordPress. Many of you know of WordPress as a blog. WordPress (and other blogging sites) allow you to create additional tabs/pages that can easily be utilized to add info like “About Me” and “About XYZ, Inc..” Ideally you will create a few blog entries though those might be as simple as writing a paragraph and linking to pages or documents created by the training firms you represent.
For US$10 a year WordPress will redirect your ‘blog’ to another URL so that it even looks more like a regular website. For example, http://st20.wordpress.com is what I was able to get for free, but for $10 I can redirect people to www.salestraining20.com and no one has to know I am using WordPress.
For an even better example of building out a WordPress site check out Dave Stein’s blog.
If you are just starting out, or starting over, as an IC or a new training firm and want other ideas or advice please Shout It Out Loud¹ – ie call or write me. And for the heck of it here is a sample of what you can do in about 15 minutes: http://trainingic.wordpress.com.
¹ I couldn’t resist having a KISS reference in my blog. For those of you that know me you know I am pained that it took so long. Next up will be an AC/DC reference, come Hell or High Water. Wow, that was easier than I thought…