A while back I did a guest post for another site about DIY marketing resources that can help small businesses look professional but also be budget friendly. Taking on marketing tasks that many companies outsource can be a great way for a business to save money. I am a small business owner just like many of you reading this post. With that, I also try to do things myself to save money but I was reminded this week that taking on certain jobs isn’t always the best use of time and doesn’t always provide the best end result.
I’m in the process of reorganizing the way I may manage my business. With that, I decided it was time to get off my free email provider and subscribe to something that would protect my client communications more, plus I wanted an email address branded to my business name. I won’t name any names but I use one of the larger companies that advertise domain names, web hosting, emails, etc. I contacted them and told them what I was looking for and why. The first representative I spoke with made some recommendations and feeling confident he knew what he was doing, I went with what he suggested.
It was down hill from there because after you buy the product you then have to figure out how to set it up. For two days I worked to get my email up and running. That’s right TWO DAYS! And that was not because I couldn’t figure it out. I consider myself to be a tech savvy person, which I guess is why I thought I could tackle this project on my own, but it was because the company I trusted really didn’t provide personalized service. The first representative just sold me what he could and moved on. I won’t get into the details because this post will be way too long, but what he sold me wasn’t what I needed and converting to the product that was a better fit caused chaos. It was a colossal waste of time and after all that, I can only hope I got a product that is going to grow with me.
In hind sight, I should have contacted a small business in my area and started a relationship with a local company that could serve as tech support when needed rather than going to the national service provider to save money and do it myself. I may have paid a little more but I would have established a relationship with someone that can help me as I grow, I would have had personalized service AND I probably wouldn’t have wasted as much time.
The takeaway…know when to say “no” to a DIY project! Whether it be building your own website or managing your Facebook page, know your limits. Be honest with yourself about your skills and know when it is time to consult with a professional. Trying to tackle things you don’t know about (like setting up your email) can lead to wasted time that could have been spent working on your business. DIY marketing projects can also lead to a finished product that doesn’t represent your business in a professional manner so choose the marketing projects you tackle wisely!