[quote style=”boxed”]Always put yourself in your clients’ shoes. If you can setup a situation where your growth is based on your clients growth, you will acquire clients for life.[/quote]
Over the past ten years, Edward Garber, president of The Florida Design Group, LLC, has been on the cutting edge of search engine marketing, search engine optimization, website design, and business growth and development. Edward has increased search recognition and has improved brand images for companies such as The Virgin Group, Ford, Coldwell Banker, Holy Cross Hospital, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital and thousands of small- and medium-sized businesses.
Edward’s keys to success are constantly staying ahead of marketing trends and working diligently and effectively at understanding that the success of The Florida Design Group is directly derived from the success of its clients. Edward wants to see every business succeed and enjoys collaborating with business owners to bring their design and marketing concepts to fruition.
Edward, his wife, Jamie, and their son, Keyton, are residents of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where they are active in the community and enjoy all of the nuances of living in the tropics. Edward is involved with Women In Distress of Broward County, Joe DiMaggio Hospitals Miracle League, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Broward County, the Southeast Florida Chamber of Commerce, Broward County Webmasters Group and South Florida Entrepreneurs Group, and enjoys doing volunteer work in the community.
What are you working on right now?
An innovative and easy-to-use lead tracking system, called LeadStat.us, for small business owners.
Where did the idea for LeadStat.us come from?
While servicing our client base of mostly business owners or managers, we found that they did not have time to visit our statistical client management center for things like analytics data, ranking reports, etc. Ultimately, they cared about one thing: having the ability to easily track leads. LeadStat.us leverages state-of-the-art systems like Twilio and gives business owners the ability to see real-time data for all calls, internet leads and quote requests in a simple dashboard. It also allows them to take notes and assign tasks to employees through the system.
What does your typical day look like?
I typically split my days between managing the workflow and production of my six-person website design shop and visiting clients on-site to brainstorm new ideas and go over weekly/monthly trends. We literally rely on our reputation for all of our business; we do amazing marketing and design work, and in return, people refer their friends and family members to us.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I am a one-man idea factory. Typically the good ideas make it to my program team to see if they can be built. If so, then I perform some pretty intensive market research. Once an idea passes those tests, we wireframe a working model and bring the idea to market.
What’s one trend that really excites you?
Crowdsourced anything. We market our clients to the masses, and the idea that numbers dictate ideas and products appeals to me.
What was the worst job you ever had and what did you learn from it?
Washing dishes at a restaurant in college. It was non-stop manual labor, and no matter how hard I worked, the dishes kept coming. I realized that to succeed, you do not necessarily have to work harder, but you do have to work smarter.
If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
I would work at Facebook for stock options only.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Make mistakes. The only way you learn is to try and fail, and I have learned some of my best lessons by not winning.
What is one problem you encountered as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
Balancing work, free time and family. I set boundaries at my house, and certain times and parts of my house are dedicated to work. Once I am done, I am really done–unless there is a real emergency.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Always put yourself in your clients’ shoes. If you can setup a situation where your growth is based on your clients growth, you will acquire clients for life.
If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be and how would you go about it?
Childhood obesity. There are many issues that we do not have control over, but this is one that we theoretically do.
Tell us a secret.
I am the king of pointless trivia, yet I have major short-term memory lapses on a daily basis.
What are your three favorite online tools or resources and what do you love about them?
Google Analytics, Mynt and Wikipedia. The first helps me track our clients’ campaigns utilizing 99% of what a client would need to see, the second helps me organize my life, and the third helps me find useless knowledge 24/7/365.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
The Power of Now. It is a life-changing book, and if you read it, you will know why.
Three people we should follow on Twitter and why?
Matt Cutts from Google, CNN’s page and Andy Samberg. I like to learn and stay relevant, and Samberg is actually really funny.
When was the last time you laughed out loud? What caused it?
This morning. My son, Keyton, is a comedian in training.
Who is your hero?
Honestly, I look for inspiration from many people. I do not have a hero.
How did you know it was time to leave your job and start your own business?
This is a tough question. Some people have the choice and some do not. My advice is to make a list of things you would do as soon as you had the opportunity to leave, and then keep that list for when the time is right.
What do you recommend for new entrepreneurs?
Make sure your goals are sincere. There is nothing wrong with making money, but remember that ultimately, you may be doing what you do for a long time, so make sure you enjoy it.
The Florida Design Group on LinkedIn:
The Florida Design Group on Facebook: facebook.com/flseo
The Florida Design Group’s website: www.thefloridadesigngroup.com
Edward Garber’s email: [email protected]
Mario Schulzke is the Founder of ideamensch, which he started a decade ago to learn from entrepreneurs and give them a platform for their ideas.