Many of my clients are people who are changing directions in their business or changing complete industries. They may have awesome jobs they love, but are thinking about starting a blog, writing a book, or becoming a speaker.
When you’re thinking about creating a new brand, business, or starting your own personal brand there’s a MILLION things you read about and hear about on podcasts, but the first things you can do to get started are to choose a name for your project, select a domain, grab an email address, and spend the rest of the day signing up for every single social media platform you can.
Choose a Name
There is much less pressure to this than people think. They key is to set a deadline to select a name, pick the best choice possible, and move forward with the next steps. You can ALWAYS change your name- yes it will be some work to do so, but what you name your brand or business is much less important than actually building a brand.
Starbucks did not mean “an amazing espresso experience” before they spent years perfecting that art. It was just a word someone picked out of a novel. Your name doesn’t HAVE to clearly reflect what you do, but it can if you choose.
When in doubt, just go with your name to start. Remember, you can always pivot and change your mind.
Select A Domain
Now that you have your name, it’s time to grab the domain for it! To keep everything streamlined I love using Google Domains. They start at $12 for the full year, and make everything easy to integrate with the next step, grabbing your email address.
When you start a business or a brand and you have a million apps and software services, things can get really muddled and confusing. You may get to a point (I know I have) where you’re paying small monthly fees for so many things that you can’t keep track of what you’re paying for and you don’t know what tools you’re actually using. This is why I love combining payments in anything I possibly can and streamlining my systems. Of course you absolutely can use any other domain host with G Suite or the email host you prefer, but if you’re not super tech savvy going with something that’s the most user friendly is going to save you time and confusion.
Get an email address
Most people will grab a gmail address for free, but for just $5 a month (the price of ONE Grande Pumpkin Spiced Latte, my friend) you can get a custom email address branded with your domain. So it wouldn’t be (yourname)@gmail.com, it would be hello@(yourdomain).com. This makes you look a little more polished and professional, and give you that little push of accountability to take your project seriously, whether you are selling something or not.
I recommend every one of my clients go with G Suite now, since it gives you a ton of extra features and integrates so seamlessly with your Google Domain AND it’s super simple to add the account to your mobile device. Nothing’s worse than being confused about how to check your email, and Google has done a great job of fixing that pain point.
Get every single social media handle you can
BUT it does mean that in the future if any platform starts to get really popular with the audience you’re trying to speak to, you already have your user name so you’re not having to have different handles for different platforms (like @rosemarywatson on Instagram and maybe @rosemary_watson on Snapchat or something). So many times I’ve come across either business owners or their social media managers that are annoyed that someone has taken the handle they want and are not posting on it or holding it hostage for a fee 🙄
It also means that you can at least put one post on every platform to direct traffic to the platform you want to create consistent content on (otherwise known as your Core Platform). If you hate Twitter, pin a post to the top saying your party is on Instagram, so follow you there for daily updates. Do that on every platform either in a post or on the bio and send people where you want them to go, no matter where they discover you.
Now, this is also where people kind of freak out because you have to keep track of all the places you grab your profile online, keep track of your passwords, etc SO I’ve done you a solid and made an Airtable spreadsheet to keep everything organized so you don’t lose your mind. I’ll send you a link to the template to your inbox where you can save it to your own Workspace in Airtable.
If you haven’t signed up for Airtable yet, or have any idea what I’m talking about, you can watch this FB Live video where I share my love affair with this new spreadsheet app (which is free BTW) and you can sign up with my affiliate link which will give me an Airtable credit! Thanks my friend! 😘
I’ve put together a little video walk-through of this spreadsheet so you know how to use it & add it to your own Workspace in your Airtable account
Congratulations! You survived the first day of the rest of your project’s life! There’s obviously SO much more to do now, but at least you can finish Day 1 with a glass of wine a proud feeling of accomplishment that now you’re ready to get to work on the right foot. Cheers to you 🥂