It's not that Grant was struggling. Not really.
He was a talented network and systems administrator.
He handled enough work to pay the bills, do nice things and have the right tins for his handsome cat Jeff.
But this was his 16th year as an IT professional. And still subcontracting to other people's operations. It was getting a bit old.
It gnawed at him to realise that, given the chance to run things his way, he could deliver so many businesses much better results than what they were getting.
It was time to step up - to build something of his own.
When I first teamed up with Grant, he wasn't sure quite what he'd sell and to whom. He wasn't entirely clueless either. But we were dealing more with a list of skills and capabilities than of products and services.
And after so much time in the trenches, there was the potential to handle all sorts of work for all sorts of people - configuring wireless networks in the home, through to setting up small business networks and on to esoteric server configurations and legacy system migrations.
We needed focus.
We ruled out some services for being simple enough for a bright teenager - it would be underselling what we're capable of. We ruled out certain customers for not needing the level of repeat business that could sustain a new business.
Some services we ruled out because of the complex scoping processes. We didn't want to get bogged down in this in the early stages of a business.
In the end, we decided to build this business: support services for the workstations, networks and servers that business need working to keep their show on the road. And we decided to target these to non-IT businesses large enough to have outgrown the home office yet not at the size to keep an in-house IT department busy.
Now that we knew what we were offering, it was time to tell the world.
It was time to build a website.
To get the copy together, I spent a lot of time with Grant getting to really know what he does and how it impacts a business.
I then worked to strip out as much computer babble and industry jargon as I could. I wanted to connect the services to clear benefits in a way that non-IT people can readily understand.
We then presented the copy in a fast-loading responsive website built in static HTML and CSS, using photographic backgrounds to emphasise various points.
Check Out These Pages of Copywriting:
When it comes to IT services for workplaces, there's always going to be a section of the market who have an urgent problem and need a technician to fix it ASAP.
But not everyone's in such a hurry to splash their cash.
That's especially true when it larger IT infrastructure decisions.
Here, it helps to have a bit more than just a sales pitch. Nothing establishes authority, rapport and trust like genuinely useful feature content.
It's about showing instead of just telling.
That's why we came up with this big, 8,000 word guide to small business computer networks.
This is about helping business owners from a non-IT background better understand the business impacts of their IT decisions.
It's a great way to get in front of business owners right at the time they're thinking about what they need to do next with their networks and servers.
There's plenty of talented writers out there. Some of them even know a thing or two about selling.
But how many can honestly say they really get information technology as well?
I'm a recovering tech geek. I spent years as a computer programmer. I coded this website in a text editor. And it took a bit of swearing at the command line to get it working, but I use a Linux machine for home theatre.
All I'm really trying to get at here is that when your engineers throw all that computer babble, I might be able to follow along.
And I can turn the tech talk into everyday plain English that connects your solutions to their problems and your outcomes to their needs.
If that sounds like the kind of skill combination you could use right now, please send me a message using the contact form.