Necessity (and frustration) is the mother of invention
This may seem a bit indulgent, but as I'm now in business for and with only myself, it's important to establish my stall, and decide what exactly it is that I do that's different to the many other brilliant people who also say they can make your digital world better.
A bit of background: I started Mack Digital after being made redundant in the COVID summer of 2020 from a Head of Digital role in the hospitality industry. It won't have escaped anyone's notice that pubs and restaurants have really struggled through this process, representing as they do the trinity of COVID worries - lots of people; small (often indoor) spaces and booze.
Sitting back and thinking about what I wanted to do with my life and career it struck me that there's an almost perfect parallel between many people's experience of digital, and many disciplines that have existed for decades, nay centuries.
Ever tried to make sense of the law? Local government planning permissions? Had a car mechanic suck through their teeth, roll their eyes and say "It'll cost you, love?"
Of course you have.
It's what people do when they want to keep their well paid jobs and create barriers to other people learning how to do it themselves. Now far be it for me to claim that experts don't have a rightful place in many disciplines (we've all seen the world of pain that can lead to), but I am not alone on being cross when I find that explanations are deliberately opaque or acronyms and obscure words used in order to inflate the value of a relatively simple concept.
Many of my past colleagues will attest that a key aim of mine has always been remove the mystery from the whole digital sphere (and pay the bills, obvs). Being Yorkshire born and bred precludes any fluffy nonsense, and I figure the sector needs a bit of straight-talking rather than using acronyms and bull***t to justify huge consultancy fees and tech that's way too complex and expensive for the job in hand. I'm also a performance marketer at heart, and am far more interested in impacting the bottom right hand corner than winning self-congratulatory creative awards.
So I developed my core product - the Digital Health Check, which basically entails me spending time looking at a client's website, email campaigns & CRM segmentation, social and search performance (or whichever platforms they want help with), summarising what's good & bad and providing a checklist of the biggest impact things they can do to make each element better.
I can't solve all problems, but I can make each platform better in simple
and trackable ways.
The output is a one-off self-contained document that provides a set of tasks people can carry out themselves, without committing to an ongoing service.
I may be risking my own earnings by not tying people into a longer term plan, but the way I see it, if they find what I do and say useful and it helps their business, they'll be back for more.