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  • Amina Aitsi-Selmi

3 insights for creating your website as an independent professional [Wise Wednesdays]

Mainstream entrepreneurship views digital technology - like a website - as a tool for marketing and sales.


I’ve had some time to think about it as I’m redesigning my own website (it feels like it’s time!) and view it somewhat differently.


Designing a website can trigger all sorts of feelings - I’ve seen this many times. It can bring up procrastination, fear of visibility and soak up a whole lot of time, energy and money if not stall the whole initiative. This is counterproductive if you’re trying to operate as an independent professional. Hiring someone doesn’t always solve the problem and can make it more complicated.


What I’ve found most helpful (and helps me spend less time on my website and more time on the work I love) is to think about the website as an aid to conversation.


Here are 3 things I’ve learned about a holistic approach to websites as an independent professional:


1. Your website is a support for you (not a distraction or drain of your precious energy)


Don’t spend too much time on your website - especially if you’re just starting out. Your website is an information point where you share about yourself and how people can work with you. You can use a readymade platform like Wix or a free one like Google websites or Weeble. Experiment and have fun. Avoid spending big chunks of money and time unless you’re truly inspired to do so for some reason.


2. Your website is a support for others (not a trigger for your fear of visibility)


Your website is for the people you’re trying to help, it’s not about proving anything to the world. So you can relax. Often when people flip to this perspective, visibility becomes easier. Yes, you may still have some discomfort about being visible or having a digital footprint. But the visibility is to help the people who are looking for you! Your website is like a lighthouse to guide ships to a safe harbour. What signals do people need so they know you’re the harbour they’re looking for? What do they need to do to reach dry land?


3. Your website is a stage in a conversation (not a stage in a ‘sales funnel’)

Let your website be part of a conversation you’re having (not a ‘funnel’ or ‘social media strategy’). When people have heard about you or read something on social media, they may navigate to your website. It’s the next part of the conversation after ‘Hi, how’s it going?’ What would you like to know about them and how can they book time to speak with you or engage more closely with your work? Make it simple, clear and avoid overexplaining anything. Share from your heart and your mind.



I have by no means cracked the nut of conscious business. And compared to 2015, I feel more confident about where my boundaries are with conventional entrepreneurship and how I want to use technology to support the work (without derailing the vision).


I designed my first website over a Christmas weekend with my brother giving me feedback…Then revamped it a few months later. I modify it once a year or so. It’s always a work in progress.


Let your website carry your energetic signature (or vibe). Offer simple, clear information about who you are and what you offer. And help people decide whether they want to take this further.


Your gifts speak for you. Your website just helps.


Have a great week,

Amina


p.s. Join us for the next Deep Dive at the RSA on Power, Politics and Coaching.

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/transformational-conversations-on-21st-century-challenges-tickets-514863680127





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