I'm a carpenter with two similar but distinct business lines. I build/sell furniture and perform light contracting/handyman work. I currently have two separate websites which advertising these services under different business names.
I'm planning to hire out the creation of a logo and new website design. Before I do I'd like to combine both of these services into one business entity and unified message.
What I am confused at is what kind of professional resource do I need to look for. Should it be a marketing consultant, a branding expert, graphic design company or something different all together?
I would look for someone to give you feedback on branding, then find a graphic designer (or someone who can do both). Check the websites like elance, odesk, 99designs, etc. for the logo part, but I think you need to be very clear on the message that you want to send.
The thought that popped into my head was - I see the benefit of being able to cross-sell services from existing clients to your other service, but I don't know that I would completely combine the websites. I can't see someone searcing for "I need someone to fix my doorjamb and I also need a new nifty chair." Someone looking for a handyman will be looking for a handyman. Seeing pictures of your quality woodworking skills may help someone decide to use you, but if your website is half handyman, half custom furniture, I think it may dilute both messages.
If you have a way to have a unified message (really your handyman work is really all woodworking), then go for it, but if you are trying to sell true handyman services, I would be careful about mixing the two completely.
I look forward to seeing what others think!
Good luck, make sure to let us know how it turns out!
The number one thing to consider when developing a website is make sure that your visitors know right off the bat what your services are as soon as they land on your page. You have about 4-7 seconds to communicate your message- the problem your solving.
Try 99 designs to get an idea of what you want your logo to be. Then, look for a digital marketing agency in your local area. They will teach you how to run a google Adword campaign in your local market- be careful with anyone with the title of expert. Send me some links of some agencies and I'll look over them with you.
I've been helping my wife with her website design and marketing in her direct sales business for a few months now and I've learned a lot.
Hi Richard. It depends on what you want your resource to do. I would suggest coming up with a mission statement & design your business website and/or company logo around that mission statement. For example, you may decide your mission statement is to "provide services to make a home or business space conceptually functional." Then your services can include plumbing, electrical maintenance, furniture designer, and/or furniture sales. When it comes to your website, I agree with Serg below. Remember communicating the design of the website to a web developer or graphic design artist, use the KIS (Keep It Simple) methodology. You don't want someone to come on your website and leave frustrated because items, contact information, or location is not easy to find. I'm a software developer and I know one of the most frustrating things to see on some websites is "too busy" method where too much is going on the page. You don't have to have a lot of items on the home page to keep everyone's attention. Simple is the best method. I hope this helps
Hi Richard - you really need someone who knows, not only web and graphic design, but understands marketing and marketing research, SEO, and content optimization.
I've done a few posts on my blog about how to approach developing your site and planning things out. But it only will really work if you've got your business plan together (at least in your head) and you know what you want your goals and targets for your business are. I've dealt with TONS of clients who drag their feet about their web marketing goals because they don't have a clear strategy for what they want to accomplish. As you merge your services, be thinking about how you would present your business' offering to potential clients.
Here are a couple posts that might help.